WHAT ABOUT CHENEY’S FEELINGS?…. For a while, it seemed as if Dick Cheney wouldn’t be welcome at the Republican National Convention at all. As recently as Aug. 5, CNN quoted a Republican official saying that McCain’s campaign and the vice president’s office had reached a “mutual understanding,” and that Cheney, given his strikingly low approval ratings, was “unlikely” to appear in St. Paul.

Realizing that it might look ridiculous to snub a sitting vice president at his own party’s convention, both camps reversed course, and Cheney is slated to take the stage next week.

And just as soon as he’s done, Cheney is leaving the country.

Vice President Cheney will travel abroad beginning September 2, 2008. President Bush has asked the Vice President to travel to Azerbaijan, Georgia, Ukraine and Italy for discussions with these key partners on issues of mutual interest.

Christopher Orr responded, “The International Space Station was booked solid.”

To summarize, Cheney will speak on Monday, Sept. 1 — the night of Labor Day, when the smallest possible television audience is expected — and will then immediately head to Azerbaijan.

You know, Cheney is probably a human being, who, in all likelihood, has emotions just like the rest of us. How do you suppose this shoddy treatment makes him feel?

Update: Kevin adds that Cheney’s itinerary isn’t reassuring: “Looks to me like Bush thinks Cheney is the perfect guy to get the Cold War started back up. Unless, that is, you can think of any other issue that’s of ‘mutual interest’ to those three particular countries.”

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.