An interesting Politico piece about how folks charged with Republican Party politics in the real world aren’t so thrilled with the Newt/Cheney Comeback Tour is far too kind about public’s view of Dick Cheney:
After a one-two punch from Newt Gingrich and Dick Cheney, House Minority Leader John Boehner and other Republican lawmakers worry that their party has overplayed its hand on Nancy Pelosi.
The Republicans’ fear: Gingrich’s call for Pelosi’s ouster has set an unattainable goal, and Cheney’s jabs at her during a speech Thursday will allow Democrats to portray the controversy as a partisan attack by one of the GOP’s most polarizing figures.
“If the story becomes about us and not her, it’s a problem for us,” said a senior Republican lawmaker.
When I think of a “polarizing” figure, I think of someone about whom the public has strong, but closely divided feelings. Like if you were at 45 percent “strongly favorable” and 45 percent “strongly unfavorable” with only a few people in the middle. Cheney is just unpopular:
That’s different, I think, from being polarizing. And note that the poll from which I’ve taken that lower-than-Cuba favorablerating for Cheney gave him an unusually high rating. It’s possible that strident public advocacy of torture and law breaking has, in fact, raised his popularity to within spitting distance of an impoverished Communist dictatorship. But it’s also possible that that poll was an outlier and that Cheney’s true favorable rating is considerably lower.