Here's Hamilton's key question:
Did anyone else find irony in the fact that new Gov. Mary Fallin, who tapped into anti-federal government fervor in order to win election last fall, turned to the federal government for help, even before the month's first snowflakes fell?As it happens, we did notice this flip-flop, a common one in Oklahoma conservative politics. The state GOP loves to whine about federal intrusion at the same time it lobbies for as many federal dollars as possible. (Sen. Jim Inhofe, anyone?)
Hamilton also points out not-so-Republican positions of GOP House Speaker Kris Steele and Senate leader Brian Bingham regarding prison reform.
As it happens, the state's conservatives are big on locking 'em up and throwing away the key—no pity for prisoners. But the state's GOP Republican leadership is now looking for ways to reform the system to save cold hard cash.
The top Republicans know we can't afford the cost of incarcerating thousands and thousands of men and women. As Hamilton notes, this new focus on rehabilitation is likely to produce squeals in the Republican caucus.
In short, Oklahoma Republicans are talking out of both sides of their mouths again, saying one thing and doing another.