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Amid water crisis, Flint residents want Michigan governor out

FLINT, Mich. -- Michigan Governor Rick Snyder is asking President Obama to declare Flint a disaster area due to the city's water crisis. But residents say the governor is the disaster.

Flint residents stormed the State Capitol this week, calling for the resignation of Governor Rick Snyder after learning their drinking water is contaminated with lead.

Demonstrators in Michigan Capitol building protesting against Gov. Rick Snyder over the water crisis in Flint on January 14, 2016
Demonstrators in Michigan Capitol building protesting against Gov. Rick Snyder over the water crisis in Flint on January 14, 2016
WLNS-TV

"Right now, what we're looking for is accountability," Flint city councilman Wantwaz Davis said.

The problems began after the city switched its water supply to the Flint River in the spring of 2014. The corrosive water stripped lead from pipes, and children in the city were found with high levels of lead in their blood.

The city has changed its water source, but environmentalists say the water coming out of faucets in Flint is still unsafe.

This week, the National Guard started distributing bottled water to residents.

Now, health officials are investigating a spike in Legionnaires' disease. There have been 87 cases of the pneumonia-like illness since the water switch -- and ten people have died.

Troy Kidd's mother Debbie died of Legionnaires' in August.

"Did she die because someone didn't want to say, 'Hey, the water might be bad?' That's my questions," Kidd told CBS News.

Dr. Marc Edwards of Virginia Tech has been studying Flint's water.

"If indeed it is true, that this can be linked to the water system -- and there is a pretty strong likelihood that it is and that it will be -- yes, unfortunately people will have died because of this decision," Edwards said.

FEMA says it will respond to the governor's emergency request as early as this weekend. The move would unlock federal funds to repair Flint's water system and help residents.