I'm not an originalist, for reasons I can and have expounded on at great length. But that doesn't mean I don't understand it's appeal, particularly to lay persons not used to thinking about theories of interpretation. When we make a statement, we want it to mean what we want it to mean. We get upset when folks take our words to mean something we did not intend. "That wasn't what I meant!" is a common lament of those who feel that the interpretation of their words has deviated from their original intention. Originalism, of course, appeals to that same instinct. If I don't like my words to mean something different from what I meant them to mean, why should want anything else for my constitution?
The problem is this linkage is one of original intention. But, for reasons I outline in this post, most originalists today have abandoned original intent as unworkable, in favor of original meaning or understanding. These two forms of originalism don't connect with that intuitive "I want to mean what I want to mean" formula. Hence, we have a disconnect between how originalism is academically justified and operationalized, and it gains popular support and legitimacy.