|(from Current TV)|
At a White House press conference, a witness to Dick Cheney’s hunting accident steps forward…
Vice President Dick Cheney had a really bad day Saturday. He shot his friend and hunting companion, prominent Republican attorney Harry Whittington of Austin, with birdshot as they were quail hunting together at the private, 50,000 acre Armstrong Ranch in the southern part of Texas near Corpus Christi. Whittington was in stable condition at a Corpus Christi hospital and had been moved from intensive care Monday. Doctors decided to leave several birdshot pellets lodged in his skin, so airports are going to be a problem.
(VP Cheney also fishes – click for list of politicians killed while hunting or fishing)
Also Monday, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department gave Cheney a warning citation for breaking Texas hunting law by failing to buy a $7 stamp allowing him to shoot upland game birds, but found the accident was caused by a “hunter’s judgment factor” as Whittington was retrieving a downed bird and stepped out of the hunting line he was sharing with Cheney. “Another covey was flushed and Cheney swung on a bird and fired, striking Whittington in the face, neck and chest at approximately 30 yards,” the report said.
Whittington also received a warning for failing to have the stamp. Duane Harvey, president of the Wisconsin Hunter Education Instructors Association, told the AP that if Whittington had made his presence known “that would have been a polite thing to do,” adding, “it’s still the fault upon the shooter to identify his target and what is beyond it.”
Gilbert San Miguel, chief deputy sheriff for Kenedy County, said the department’s report had not been completed Monday and that it was being handled as a hunting accident. The sheriff’s department and the state have both concluded that alcohol did not appear to be a factor.
“Dick Cheney is one of the most skilled shots I know, and they’ll make fun of it forever.”
Former senator Alan K. Simpson
The accident was not reported publicly by the vice president’s office for nearly 24 hours, and then only after it was reported by the Corpus Christi Caller-Times on its website Sunday. In a press briefing yesterday White House spokesman Scott McClellan had an interesting exchange with a reporter:
Q So as the Press Secretary, are you satisfied with the way this was handled?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I know that the Vice President’s Office was working to pull together information and make sure that information got out. And the Vice President felt that Mrs. Armstrong should be the first one to go out there and provide that information to the public, which she did — and she reached out early Sunday morning to do so.
Q And you’re satisfied with the way —
MR. McCLELLAN: You can always look back at these issues and look at how to do a better job.
Q Well, it’s not really a hindsight issue here. I mean, the Vice President made a decision about how the public should be notified that basically is at odds with the standard practice of how the President’s own press operation and this White House notifies the public; isn’t that right?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, again, this was handled by the Vice President’s Office. The Vice President thought that Mrs. Armstrong should be the first one to give that information out, since she was an eyewitness.
Q But let’s just be clear here. The Vice President of the United States accidentally shoots a man and he feels that it’s appropriate for a ranch owner who witnessed this to tell the local Corpus Christi newspaper, and not the White House press corps at large, or notify the public in a national way?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I think we all know that once it is made public, then it’s going to be news and all of you all are going to be seeking that information. And the Vice President’s Office was ready to provide additional information to reporters. There was no traveling White House press corps with the Vice President, as there is with the President in a situation like this —
Q Right, that’s a distinction without a difference, really. I mean, we have Blackberries —
MR. McCLELLAN: So there is some different circumstances. And the other circumstance here was that someone was injured and needed medical care. And the Vice President’s team was making sure he was getting taken care of and that he got to the hospital and received additional treatment.
Blogcritics have further thoughts on the matter:
Satire: Cheney Calls Iraq War An Unfortunate “Shooting Accident”
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Satire: Cheney Takes Bronze Medal in Olympic Biathlon; 7 Killed, Dozens Injured
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Cheney’s Killer Rabbit
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Posted to Politics by Sean Aqui on February 16, 2006 12:34 AM
Satire: Cheney Going To Turino
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Leadership Questions Surrounding Shooting
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Satire: My Hunting Adventure with Tricky Dick
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Posted to Politics by Brian Schleper on February 14, 2006 12:12 PM
Satire: Cheney’s Gay Partner Shot
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Posted to Politics by Scott Butki on February 13, 2006 09:23 PM
Cheney, Guns, Social Security, Vigilance, and Tort Reform
It’s been called everything from an accident to something more conspiratorial. Both views and/or positions are wrong. The shooting of 78-year- old Harry Whittington by Dick Cheney on Saturday showed 3 things. First, it unveiled the fallback plan by the Administration…
Posted to Politics by AmeriPundit on February 13, 2006 03:35 PM
Satire: The Schrodinger Presidency
I passed up an invitation to go quail hunting this weekend with Dick Cheney to attend “A Showcase for Intelligent Design” , a conference for right-minded scientists. I do think the Vice-President gets a bad rap from time to…
Posted to Politics by Chancelucky on February 13, 2006 02:25 AM
Satire: “Crazed” Dick Cheney in Stand-off with Police after Shooting Man
Dick Cheney taunts police from window. by Dylan Jameson CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS (PoopyCaca.com) – Vice President Dick Cheney remains holed up in a Texas hunting lodge after shooting a 78-year-old man, keeping police at bay by randomly…
Posted to Politics by PoopyCaca on February 12, 2006 10:06 PM
Cheney Hunting Accident
Rant begin. I realize it’s all over the national media by now that United States VP Dick Cheney was involved in a hunting accident. And I’m not going to spend time recounting the details of the event. If you want to…
Posted to Culture by Joe Battista on February 12, 2006 09:13 PM