Cheney named "Conservative of the Year"

Human Events reaches back to the Bush administration, giving an award to the former vice president

By Alex Koppelman
December 21, 2009 11:35PM (UTC)
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For most people, the year ending now is 2009. That's apparently not true at the right-wing magazine Human Events; reading it Monday, you could be forgiven for thinking that the Bush administration is still in office.

The magazine has named former Vice President Dick Cheney "Conservative of the Year." The article about the honor praises him for "caus[ing] so much angst at teh White House and in the mainstream news media."


That's not the only throwback aspect to the award, though. The piece that lays out the reason behind Cheney's receiving the honor was written by former UN Ambassador John Bolton, one of the most hawkish members of the previous administration.

There's an interesting perspective to the piece, one that isn't particularly shocking given Bolton's orientation and the magazine's having chosen Cheney in the first place, but is still somewhat hard to square with reality. Bolton repeatedly makes a case that the White House worries about Cheney and his influence on public opinion. That's true, to a certain degree -- but it's also true that the reason the White House has been so quick to publicly engage with the former vice president is that Cheney is remarkably unpopular. The Obama team figures, rightly, that they're better off in any fight in which Cheney is the face of the opposition.

Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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