Hypocrisy Charge Needs Context

Hypocrisy is defined as “the practice of professing beliefs, feelings or virtues that one does not hold or possess.”

I needed to double-check the definition after reading a Quick Hit from Arizona Republic editorial board member Linda Valdez who wrote that Arizona’s deficit could reach $700 million this year.  She then added, “But prior to new federal assistance, the shortfall had the potential to reach $1 billion.  Those railing against the Obama administration might check their hypocrisy meters.”

If this is a shot at Gov. Brewer, then Valdez should say so.  Brewer has been critical of Obama on a few fronts, namely ObamaCare (in which she filed a lawsuit against) and the Obama administration’s lawsuit against SB1070.  It is also true that Brewer has accepted hundreds of millions of federal stimulus dollars to plug gaping holes in the state budget.  Does the criticism of ObamaCare and the 1070 lawsuit, while accepting federal dollars to backfill the budget constitute hypocrisy?  No, they have nothing to do with one another.  Brewer never said she thought SB1070 was unconstitutional, nor did she ever claim we needed ObamaCare.

Moreover, Brewer has not been overly critical of the federal stimulus dollars as have other governors, and Brewer has publicly fretted over cutting enough spending to balance the budget.  Heck, she even raised taxes to avoid cutting spending.  So accepting federal dollars as part of her budget fix is not only NOT hypocritical, it’s consistent with her view of state spending.

Maybe Valdez wasn’t directing her Quick Hit toward Brewer.  Maybe it was directed at the (very) far left (Maher, Olbermann, Matthews, Valdez, etc.) who are “railing against” Obama for not being “left” enough.  “Well, he may have fallen short on some of our issues, but at least he prevented even more state cuts to education and health care.”

That’s the only way I see the hypocrisy charge sticking.

(I’ve emailed Valdez for clarification.)