"It's Time to Take the Gloves Off"

So our Vice President shot somebody with a shotgun. Oops. Most news sources are happy to report on that. It makes a heckuva news story. But the real story, covered by Editor & Publisher, is why it took over 48 hours for the public to learn about it.

Did the White House handlers, aided by a wildly pro-Republican victim, wait for the news that the man Cheney peppered with birdshot was going to be ok, then release it? Or was it held to avoid being the prime topic on Sunday morning talk shows?

If Harry Whittington, VP Cheney's friend and victim, had been killed (thank goodness he was not) would this have ever come out in the press? Would Cheney have been help responsible? I'll grant that Cheney shot the man by accident. But still, if he had been killed, isn't that man slaughter?

After watching the actions of this administration, do you really think that some handler wouldn't have made all of this disappear?

UPDATE: 2.14.2006 Time Magazine has picked up on this and has this to say about the delay:

The Vice President was the press strategist, and Karl Rove was the investigative reporter. Vice President Cheney overruled the advice of several members of the White House staff and insisted on sticking to a plan for releasing information about his hunting accident that resulted in a 20-hour, overnight delay in public confirmation of the startling incident, according to several Republican sources.

"This is either a cover-up story or an incompetence story," said a top Republican who is close to the White House and has rarely been critical of the Administration in the past five years. "Karl was constrained, as was the entire communications operation, because the Vice President had arranged for how this was to come out."


He [Cheney] called President Bush around 7:30 p.m. "to inform him that there was a hunting accident" in the Vice President's group, a spokesman said, but Card "did not know the Vice President was involved at that time," according to an e-mail to White House reporters. Rove, a deputy chief of staff, later spoke to the ranch owner, who is a longtime friend, and discovered that the Vice President had acccidentally shot someone. Rove called Bush shortly before 8 p.m. to tell him, according to the e-mail. Press Secretary Scott McClellan was not told until 6 the next morning

In the end, the story doesn't really make any real conclusions but at least it showed that the Administration manipulated the media...

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