I’ve gotta say, I’m a bit surprised by this.

I knew Mitt Romney wasn’t nearly as popular as he’s made out to be in the media. Sure, he’s got a tiny segment of vocal conservatives with established platforms that adore the guy, but it was always obvious that most Americans simply don’t like Mitt Romney all that much.

Still, to only pull an 18% favorable rating is pretty sad.

Less than a fifth of Americans view Sen. Mitt Romney favorably.

The Utah Republican is looked at positively by just 18% of Americans, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Sunday. His favorability has dropped from 43% since October 2012, prior to losing his presidential bid to then-President Barack Obama.

Romney is viewed very positively by 2% of Americans, somewhat positively by 16%, neutrally by 37%, somewhat negatively by 19%, and very negatively by 19%, according to the poll.

Romney falls somewhere in between licking a hot stove and stubbing your toe in the dark. At these levels of suck, I’m not sure it matters all that much. If you take out the neutrals, you still get Romney at an 18% favorable to 38% unfavorable rating.

I’m sure some conservative writers would have no problem going 1000 words explaining how this poll really doesn’t show Romney is deeply unpopular, but I don’t believe that though. I think this is fairly simple. Romney is seen as a two-faced, flip-flopping politician who will say and do anything to elevate his profile. The right doesn’t like him because he’s spent most of his career trying to appease the left. And the left don’t like him because, well, he’s Mitt Romney.

Despite what some claim, Republicans don’t demand absolute fealty to Donald Trump. Ask Ben Sasse, who still garners plenty of support despite levying some fair criticisms along the way. What they do demand is not having people in their own party who take every opportunity to virtue signal against the President but who sat silently through eight years of Obama. Romney had a chance to rebuild his brand after 2012 and he took the easy way out, only now trying to reassert himself on the public stage when it’s convenient and safe. Because attacking Trump is the safest thing you can do in the current atmosphere. Nothing will earn you more plaudits and back-slaps than doing so.

There’s also the fact that Romney is just fake. He’s presenting himself as the high-minded statesman one minute and the next he’s retweeting Adam Schiff from his burner account on Twitter.

Regardless, Romney’s tact doesn’t seem to be playing well with anyone.

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