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Monday, February 13, 2006

The next box office smash Japanese anime explores the dark and subterranean world of an enigmatic politician turned underworld enforcer…

The Corpus Christi Caller-Times, the infamous “local paper” first informed of the Cheney shooting mishap by “ranch owner” Katherine Armstrong, has breaking developments:

The…Sheriff’s Department did not investigate the accidental shooting…by Vice President Dick Cheney until the next morning.
Cheney, Whittington and U.S. ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein Pam Willeford were hunting quail…Katharine Armstrong, one of the owners of the ranch, said…it didn’t occur to the family to contact the authorities.
"The sheriff came the next morning and took a statement." Armstrong said…None in the hunting party was drinking alcohol, Armstrong said.
"No, zero, zippo and I don’t drink at all," she said. "No one was drinking."

And CBS News is reporting:

Texas authorities are complaining that the Secret Service barred them from speaking to Cheney after the incident. Kenedy County Texas Sheriffs Lt. Juan Guzman said deputies first learned of the shooting when an ambulance was called. But the Secret Service told a different story, saying agents had informed the local sheriff of the shooting about an hour after it happened and that the vice president had been interviewed about the accident by local authorities on Sunday morning. elusive at great heights.
Meanwhile, further sober doings at the big house on Pennsylvania Avenue via today's White House Briefing:

Q What time on Sunday morning did you learn that Vice President Dick Cheney was the shooter?

MR. McCLELLAN: It was early. I was woken up.

Q Do you have any -- was it 6:00 a.m., 5:00 a.m.? Can you give me at least just some sort of sense of how early --

MR. McCLELLAN: It was probably in the 6:00 a.m. range or so. Usually I'm up at 5:00 a.m., but it was Sunday…

Q You said this morning that the President was informed Saturday night by Karl Rove and Andy Card.

MR. McCLELLAN: Yes, initially by Andy Card.

Q At that point, what was he informed? Was he informed that the Vice President had accidentally shot somebody?

MR. McCLELLAN: No, I think initially, again, Andy had the same report that I had…And so we didn't know who was involved…

Q This doesn't make any sense, though. This happens at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, and you're saying that until the morning, the President of the United States --

MR. McCLELLAN: No, I didn't say that…

Q You've got to clarify this timeline, Scott; it just doesn't make any sense.

Q When did the President know that the Vice President was the shooter? What time?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, there was additional information coming in that night. And the details continued to come in throughout the morning, into the Sunday morning time period…

Q Scott, it's getting very confusing to try to figure out who knew what when, and why…it sounds like everything just shut down. Was there no staff member with the Vice President --

MR. McCLELLAN: No, actually, as I pointed out, there was information that was coming into people back here, all the way at 3:00 a.m…additional information was coming to light from what occurred down in the Corpus Christi area of Texas...

Q Over the roughly 12 hours or so, none of that information -- it took 12 hours for someone to tell someone up here that the Vice President had fired the weapon?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, again, Jim, keep in mind two things. One…medical care…secondary to that is gathering the facts…and so they gathered facts together…

Q Who was gathering the facts? Who was doing that?

MR. McCLELLAN: I think there's the information on the ground there, as well as information then being provided -- from the ground there being provided back here.

Q Right, and who was doing -- who was doing the providing, and who were they providing it to?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, people with the Vice President's Office. I think…

Q So when did the President definitively know that the Vice President had shot somebody?

MR. McCLELLAN: He was learning additional details into that evening on Saturday --

Q It wasn't a detail that it was the Vice President that pulled the trigger? When did that detail --

MR. McCLELLAN: We didn't know the full details…

Q Wait, wait, hold on…was the Vice President immediately clear that he had accidentally shot his friend, or not? Or did that information become available later? You make it seem like there's all this information that had to develop.

MR. McCLELLAN: I wouldn't suggest that at all. I'm sure that that was the case…

Q But that's ridiculous. Are you saying that you don't know within the White House? What took you so long?

MR. McCLELLAN: Listen again to what I said. The first priority is making sure Mr. Whittington is receiving medical care. Secondary to that is making sure you get the facts together…

Q Scott, when you consider the chronology you're trying to go through here, and all of the various wrinkles of how long it took for the primary information that the Vice President was the person who shot this fellow to get through to the President, himself, is there any notion here of reviewing your own communications apparatus? I mean, this is sort of reminiscent of the levee story, frankly, you know?

MR. McCLELLAN: I reject that. I disagree with that fully, Peter. I don't know what you're referring to there, but I reject the insinuation there…there are certain facts that you don't know necessarily immediately…

Modified Image: AP,
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