IMMIGRATION POLL….A quickie CNN poll indicates that people who watched Bush’s immigration speech last night liked it. 79% had a positive view of the speech; 67% had an overall positive view of Bush’s policies; 75% approved of sending National Guard troops to the border; 69% favored a guest worker program; and 74% liked the idea of giving illegal immigrants a path to earn citizenship.

It’s hard to say how meaningful this is, since people who watched the speech are probably more predisposed than average to approve of what Bush says. Still, it seems to have gone over pretty well.

Ironically, though, this is probably bad news. Bush seems to have done a good job of targeting the political middle, and these folks are going to be pretty disappointed when he’s unable to deliver on his oh-so-reasonable plan. As near as I can tell, Bush’s xenophobe base is more pissed than ever and planning to stay pissed; the House is still in no mood to compromise from its round ’em up and herd ’em home bill; Democrats are going to continue to hate him regardless; and the folks who were so impressed last night are going to feel like they were suckered when it becomes clear who really runs the Republican Party and how little clout Bush really has on this issue. By this time next month nobody’s going to like him.

All this would make me pretty happy, too, if it weren’t for the fact that there are real people who are going to suffer because of this, and real damage to the country that’s going to be done. Sadly, we’ve all gotten kind of used to that, haven’t we?

UPDATE: The Zogby poll is not so enthusiastic: “Overall, 47% said they liked the Monday speech, while 47% said they were disappointed.” Hmmm.

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