Projection: The attribution of one's own attitudes, feelings, or suppositions to others.
Could Maureen Dowd's idée fixe -- that Republicans seek father figures -- be the projection of the columnist's deep-seated desire for a strong man of her own? Dowd's columns are as much pop psychology as political commentary. The NY Times columnist understands virtually everything in terms of the underlying impulses of the id, ego and super-ego.
When it comes to presidential preferences, Dowd's theory is that Republicans seek strong men who will dole out discipline and authority. Take today's [p.p.v.] opus, Old School Inanity, in which Dowd twice trots out her father-figure formula [emphasis added]: