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Dick Cheney's Transcendent Cynicism

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Source: The Nation


Dick Cheney has been supporting the Tea Party. (Licensed under Creative Commons/Courtesy of the World Economic Forum)

Dick Cheney's cynicism knows no end.

Yet, it still has the power to amaze -- especially when Cheney's political machinations go to extremes.

Consider his current embrace of the Tea Party movement.

At a point when the Republican Party's favorability ratings have collapsed to the lowest point in the history of Gallup polling, just about everyone who has an interest in the future of the Grand Old Party is fretting about the damage done by a movement so politically tone deaf that it thought the American people would embrace a politics of government shutdown and debt-ceiling brinksmanship in order to advance the impossible dream of "defunding Obamacare."

But here's Dick Cheney -- taking time out from pitching his new book, Heart: An American Medical Odyssey -- to rally to the defense of the movement.

Hailing the Tea Party as a "positive influence" on the Grand Old Party, he announced on NBC's Today show that "it's an uprising, in part, and the good thing is it's taken place within the Republican Party."

Despite the chaos it has unleashed within and around the party for which the 72-year-old former vice president serves as a grouchy grand old man, Cheney declared: "I don't see it as a negative. I think it's much better to have that kind of ferment and turmoil and change in the Republican Party than it would be to have it outside."

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John Nichols, a pioneering political blogger, has written the Online Beat since 1999. His posts have been circulated internationally, quoted in numerous books and mentioned in debates on the floor of Congress.

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