Speakers are 'lightning rods' for opposition, says public opinion analyst

Public opinion analyst Karlyn Bowman said in an interview that aired Tuesday on "What America's Thinking" that House Speakers are normally a top target for the opposition. 

"Speakers are lightning rods. We've seen this ever since [former Speaker] Newt Gingrich [R-Ga.]," Bowman, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, told Hill.TV's Joe Concha. 

"All of the forces of opposition just go to them, and that's what we see with Ryan and Pelosi. Neither of them are highly regarded," she continued. 

House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiImmigrants who seek opportunity should comply with longstanding American values Trump's intel moves spark Democratic fury Buttigieg sounds alarm after Sanders wins Nevada MORE (D-Calif.), who is vying for a second stint as Speaker, has an average approval rating of 28.5 percent, according to Real Clear Politics.

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanPaul Ryan says he disagrees with Romney's impeachment vote Trump doubles down on Neil Cavuto attacks: 'Will he get the same treatment as' Shep Smith? Trump lashes out at Fox News coverage: 'I won every one of my debates' MORE (R-Wis.) has an approval rating of 29.3, according to the website. 

Bowman's comments come as Pelosi works to win over House Democrats ahead of their vote on Wednesday for House Speaker before they take the majority in January.

Pelosi has faced a series of obstacles in her bid for the Speakership, including over a dozen Democrats signaling in a letter that they will not support her.

However, some of her critics, including Rep. Marcia FudgeMarcia Louise FudgeGabbard calls on DNC chairman to step down after Iowa 'debacle' DNC chairman says he's 'absolutely not' considering resigning Key House Democrat says Perez must go: 'He doesn't lead on anything' MORE (D-Ohio) who floated challenging Pelosi, have since walked back their criticisms and backed the longtime Democratic leader.

— Julia Manchester