FACT CHECK —Lingle: Hirono 'Flip Flops' On Budget Cuts

Chad Blair/Civil Beat

WASHINGTON — Republican Senate hopeful Linda Lingle says opponent Mazie Hirono can't make up her mind.

Why's that? Because, Lingle's campaign says, Hirono has changed her tune — and then changed it again — on the across-the-board budget cuts facing the federal government if negotiators can't strike a deficit-reduction deal before the end of the year.

"She voted for the budget cuts in the first place, then said in the first debate and in recent media interviews that she opposed the cuts, and then voted again last week to keep the cuts. Mazie has flip flopped twice on this important issue. So, what is Mazie Hirono's position?" Lingle campaign manager Bob Lee said in a press release late Sunday.

The stakes for Hawaii are high, as Lee notes in the release. The cuts would hit Medicare, federal education funding, and, perhaps most important for the U.S. Pacific Command in Hawaii, defense spending. Civil Beat has explored what the automatic cuts would mean in the islands:

The sequence of events Lingle's campaign outlines in the press release is right enough, but the interpretation of them as a double-flip-flop is a stretch. A little context is needed.

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