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CNN to host Flint debate between Clinton, Sanders

By Andrew V. Pestano Follow @AVPLive9 Contact the Author   |   Feb. 7, 2016 at 12:45 PM
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FLINT, Mich., Feb. 7 (UPI) -- CNN will host Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders for a debate in Flint, Mich., scheduled for March 6.

The debate will be held two days before the Michigan and Mississippi primaries. Flint has been at the center of the national spotlight as the city deals with a contaminated water crisis.

"Our Democratic candidates have run spirited campaigns focused on how to best move our country forward, and our upcoming debate in Flint, Michigan, is a critical setting to highlight what's at stake in these elections," Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz said in a statement distributed by CNN.

Since officials in Flint switched the city's water source from Detroit to the Flint River in early 2014, complaints about the smell of the water and high levels of lead in children have increased. More than 100,000 people are affected in Flint and some surrounding areas.

Lead toxicity is dangerous for children because it can interfere with the development of the brain and nervous system, and carries other health risks for many organs and systems, some of which may not be apparent for years after exposure, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The city switched its water source from the Detroit system in April 2014 as a temporary solution while a pipeline is completed to bring water from Lake Huron's Karegnondi Water Authority.

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