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A Day With the White House 'Gaggle'
ChronWatch ^ | 2/20/06 | Vincent Fiore

Posted on 02/20/2006 7:01:29 PM PST by redstate38

A Day With the White House 'Gaggle' Written by Vincent Fiore Monday, February 20, 2006

Lately, a typical day in the life of the mainstream media sounds something like your average trial-by-mob assemblage.

For our purposes here, the setting will be the White House press room. On “trial” is the entire Bush administration. Specifically, the main topic of discussion is the recent accidental shooting of a fellow hunter and friend by Vice President Cheney.

White House press secretary Scott McClellan holds what is commonly referred to as the “Gaggle,” a near-daily briefing given to the chief White House correspondents of their “respected” news outlets.

Here then, is a day in the life of the mainstream media and its oft-times rambunctious and conspiracy-obsessed questioning regarding anything this White House does.

Scott McClellan: Good afternoon, everyone. I'd like to begin with a little preview of tomorrow's remarks in Ohio. The president will be traveling to Dublin, Ohio, tomorrow to deliver remarks on his health care agenda. The president has outlined a comprehensive plan to make health care more affordable and available for all Americans. It is focused on expanding choice, lowering cost, and improving quality of care through common-sense, innovative reforms.

With that being said, I will be glad to take your questions. David?

David Sanger, New York Times: Scott, do you think it was appropriate for the vice president to wait so long in telling the world--and by that I mean us in the media--about this shooting?

McClellan: Accidental shooting, David. I believe the vice president’s office had a statement within…

Sanger: That’s not what I asked. Why are you delaying here, Scott? Are you hiding something?

McClellan: Not at all, David. We give it to you, the press, as soon as we know…

Helen Thomas, Hearst Newspapers: Ari, why the hell is the vice president hunting buffalo in New Jersey while there are children starving in New Orleans?

McClellan: Helen, I assume you mean my predecessor, Ari Fleisher, who is not here any longer. As to children starving in New Orleans, I do not believe…

Thomas: Did the vice president shoot a buffalo or not, Ari?

McClellan: (sigh…) No, Helen, the vice president never got a clean shot. Matt?

Matthew Cooper, Time: Scott, is it true that the man that vice president Cheney shot is a covert agent for the FBI, CIA, DOI, and DWI? Isn’t Harry Whittington, in fact, Sir Charles Lytton, AKA the notorious “phantom”?

McClellan: Wait a minute, Matt. That’s a character in a movie, I believe, played by…

Cooper: A movie made by this White House team in 1964, Scott? Knowing that it might be useful on just such an occasion? Did Karl Rove do the casting?

McClellan: Let’s stick to the topic, gang. I have a progress report on Mr. Whittington that I will be handing out after the briefing. David?

David Gregory, NBC: Scott, why hasn’t the president stepped in on this? Is there any truth to the rumor that the ranch in Texas where this so-called “accident” took place is where he and the vice president have hidden the WMD’s to be shipped to Iraq at a future date? To support his “rational” for going to war?

McClellan: David, I don’t think that is a fair characterization of…

Gregory: What did you say, you over-fed and over-paid White House knickknack? Stop trying to make me look like a jerk…we know an answer when we hear it. We’ll decide whether or not the answer fits our agenda, Scott.

McClellan: David, can we try to keep this on a professional…wait…you’re getting excited…oops! Could someone get David’s pacifier? It fell out of his mouth and rolled, I believe, under the CNN correspondent’s chair…Dana? Thank you.

Gregory: (arms flailing, eyes flashing) We ARE the unbiased and partisan-free final word…the guardians of America…

McClellan: Yes, David. I see you’re hosting “Hardball” again tonight. Jim?

Jim VandeHei, Washington Post: Scott, is this shooting an impeachable offense? Or possibly a resignation of office? I mean, were talking about a shotgun blast to the face here…

McClellan: Jim, that’s stretching it a bit too far. The vice president has done nothing criminal here, he…

VandeHei: The vice president? No, I mean President Bush! It’s obvious that this goes to the top of the food chain here. First the Enron scandal, then the Tsunamis in Asia, then Hurricane Katrina, and now a “shooting” incident…does the president want to apologize to the American people for any this?

McClellan: Jim, I think you may have misplaced some key events here. You forgot 9/11, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the fight against terrorism in general. Why not get the president to apologize for everything while you are at it, including the sinking of the Titanic? Last Question…Jessica:

Jessica Yellin, ABC: A two part question: There have been accounts that Republicans on the Hill feel that this has damaged the party, in general. Is that a message that was conveyed to the president when they had breakfast here with him? And do you see a correlation--as many reportedly do see--a connection between the shooting of Mr. Whittington and the recent publication of some of the old pictures from Abu Ghraib? Are you upset with the publication at this time? And on Guantanamo, is there any credibility to U.N. calls to close down Guantanamo? Does the administration admit to the fact that the vice president shot Mr. Whittingham in order to deflect public and media scrutiny regarding the “domestic spying program” enacted by the NSA?

McClellan: I count about six questions there, Jessica, but so what? That’s what you people of the press are here for--to ask the relevant and important questions that help keep a democracy a democracy. The people of the country are well-served when a free and open press--professionals with years of journalistic experience--can accurately report on events, political or otherwise.

But until that happens, we’ll just have to muddle along with you people. Thank you all.

About the Writer: Vincent Fiore is a freelance writer who resides in New York City. Vincent receives e-mail at

TOPICS: News/Current Events; Political Humor/Cartoons; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: cheney; gaggle; gregory; mcclellan; press; whitehouse

1 posted on 02/20/2006 7:01:33 PM PST by redstate38
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To: redstate38

*Snicker* - - - - especially liked the Helen Thomas Q&A!

2 posted on 02/20/2006 7:19:30 PM PST by Theresawithanh (Always remember that you're unique. Just like everyone else.)
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To: Theresawithanh

not too far from the truth...

3 posted on 02/20/2006 7:26:34 PM PST by redstate38
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To: redstate38

4 posted on 02/20/2006 7:41:17 PM PST by perfect stranger
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To: redstate38

ROTFLMCO! Does that ever sound realistic.

5 posted on 02/20/2006 7:48:29 PM PST by McGavin999 (If Intelligence Agencies can't find leakers, how can we expect them to find terrorists?)
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To: redstate38

All the officials in the Bush admin were convicted by the press the day they took power. They are all guilty of not being liberals...the most serious charge that our beloved "independent" press corps can level against anyone.

6 posted on 02/21/2006 3:04:05 AM PST by driftless ( For life-long happiness, learn how to play the accordion.)
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To: redstate38

This is hilarious. Too bad it's all true with the reporters and their inane questions.

7 posted on 02/21/2006 5:11:55 AM PST by Slip18
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