There are many ways for politicians to interpret unfavorable polls. Some temper hardline views to more accurately reflect the will of their constituents. Some argue about polling bias, and some bide time until the public forgets.
But Texas Republican Rep. Blake Farenthold takes a another approach. To Farenthold, polling "numbers" and "percentages" are just random marks on an abstract expressionist painting. They don't really mean anything, man. It's up to the viewer to define the meaning.
And Farenthold is choosing to coat the shutdown in particularly glossy paint. In a recent interview with KRISTV reporter Andrew Ellison, Farenthold appeared unfazed by public opinion. Although a recent Gallup poll states 81% of Americans are unhappy with the government, Farenthold denied that GOP tactics had anything to do with the numbers.
Instead, he said the government distrust was caused by the Benghazi and NSA scandals. Or perhaps it was that time Bill Clinton had an "improper physical relationship" with Monica Lewinsky. Maybe the nation is still reeling from the Harding administration being in bed with Big Oil. Maybe it's just the doldrums of being exposed repeatedly to Miley Cyrus' "Wrecking Ball" video.
Ellison reminded Farenthold that much of the drop in support is directly related to the shutdown, pointing to a group of retired veterans who were facing a loss of disability checks should the federal government crumble. Fiddle-dee-dee said the congressman, those checks were just collateral damage.
"I feel like my mandate when I was elected was to go reduce the size of government, lower taxes, and increase freedom, and freedom isn't free, and sometimes you have to make a small sacrifice to move forward with what you're after," Congressman Farenthold said.
The freedom train doesn't chug on goodwill. Sometimes you need to throw in some coal. Farenthold will just have to keep squeezing until he has a diamond.
Watch below as Farenthold chooses his own adventure.
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