This is exactly right, and perfectly encapsulates what’s so sickly about our politics, and the Republican Party specifically.

“The reason most voters are opposed to the mosque has very little to do with being against religious freedom or Islam and more to do with a gut reaction,” says Republican consultant Steve Lombardo, who worked on President George H.W. Bush’s 1992 campaign and was an adviser to Mitt Romney during the former Massachusetts governor’s 2008 presidential run.

“Right now, it’s a visceral feeling — this is a place where Americans died,” Lombardo says, despite the fact that it is a misconception that the Islamic center, which would include a mosque at the site of what used to be a Burlington Coat Factory outlet, would sit on ground zero.

“Voters in Ohio do not sit there with a map of Manhattan in their heads — all they understand is ‘ground zero mosque,’ ” Lombardo says. “It’s now a noun.”

So the GOP creates a completely dishonest, bullshit frame and flogs it to death to influence people’s “gut reaction.” Doesn’t matter if its true, it’s how it makes people “feel.” The media picks up the frame, further spreading the disease, and meanwhile, no one bothers to actually look up the facts and point out that the whole thing is right-wing hissy kabuki.

Yep, sounds about right.