Friday, March 18, 2016

Flipping For the Team

Rep. Lacy Clay (D-Mo.) noted the dissonance between Chaffetz and other committee Republicans calling out for stronger rules while also frequently bashing the EPA.

“Republicans have been absolutely slamming the EPA for overreaching at every possible turn,” Clay said during Thursday’s hearing. “Now they criticize the EPA for not doing more when Governor Snyder fell down on the job.”

Reporters asked [House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason] Chaffetz [R-Utah] about the apparent contradiction after the hearing.

“You gotta look at it on a case-by-case basis,” he said.
Arthur Delaney, Kate Sheppard "Thanks To Flint, Republicans Love EPA Rules All Of A Sudden"
I would suspect that it's less that Republican members of Congress like Representative Chaffetz suddenly love the Environmental Protection Agency, or even the Lead and Copper Rule that they are claiming needs to be more stringently enforced. It's that they see a chance to burnish their images in the eyes of their voters by coming down on a Federal government agency during a Democratic administration. It's likely that if the political seating chart were reversed, that Republicans would be defending the EPA and looking to blame Democrats in Flint's administration for the water issues.

In the end, this isn't because politicians are hypocrites, as much as their political opponents and dissenting commentators like to say they are. It's because politically active people in the United States; the ones who write donation checks and can be counted on to vote and to help get out the vote, are often staunchly partisan and have little problem with giving people a pass for taking contradictory positions in the name of the cause. So wanting to de-fund the EPA one week and then complaining that it's incompetent the next? Not a problem.

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