The whole topic of conversation right now on "Hardball" is the idea of a Bush "mandate." Maybe Dick Cheney did mention the word today but he certainly didn't introduce it in the current discourse. To my recollection, the first president-elect to claim a "mandate" was Bill Clinton, elected by a 43% plurality. President Bush at least has a more valid claim based on the popular vote this time.
Words mean things. "Mandate" more or less means "obligation." The president's only real obligation is to uphold the Constitution, which details what he must do. Everything else he does as president is more accurately called prerogative because he was basically hired by the people to use his own judgement to lead and administer. Every issue will have its own respective levels of support or opposition which can be communicated to the president and to Congress by the people; citizens don't have to just sit and watch between elections.
You don't really have to be watching "Hardball" right now to guess who's talking the most about this. It's more idle talk from some of the many MSM professionals struggling to keep some sense of having influence.