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Double-Barrelled Blast: GMA Floats Cheney Cover-Up, Doubts VP's Account
GMA/NewsBusters ^ | Mark Finkelstein

Posted on 02/13/2006 5:16:58 AM PST by governsleastgovernsbest

by Mark Finkelstein on

February 13, 2006 - 08:06

Good Morning America took took a double-barrelled blast at the Vice President Cheney this morning over his accidental shooting of a quail-hunting companion, suggesting the White House might have tried to cover up the incident, and also calling into question his version of events.

GMA did at first describe the accident as having occurred because the victim, attorney Harry Whittington, failed to observe the quail-hunting rule by which hunters remain in a single line as they advance, indicating that the accident occurred after Whittington left the line to retrieve a bird from the tall grass.

But GMA host Charlie Gibson later claimed that there was "growing political fallout" from the incident, wondering:

"Why didn't the White House tell everyone when this accident happened? Why did they wait so long and did that make a bad situation even worse?"

Normally, the MSM loves to hate talk radio and the pajamahadeen of the blogosphere, but when it suits their purposes . . . ABC White House reporter Jessica Yellin stated that it took the VP's office nearly 24 hours to go public with the incident, adding:

"That delay has prompted speculation online and on talk radio that perhaps Mr. Cheney was hoping to cover up the incident.

So GMA wouldn't offer up the cover-up conspiracy theory on its own, but used the convenient hook of reporting that others - those disreputable new-media types - had.

Gibson then interviewed Kathryn Garcia, the youthful reporter at the Corpus Christi Caller-Times who broke the story. Garcia, manning the paper's news desk on a sleepy Sunday morning, had this world-class story fall into her lap when ranch-owner Katharine Armstrong called in and couldn't find the reporter she was looking for.

Gibson tried to lure Garcia into second-guessing Armstrong and Cheney's account of the accident:

"I know that she told you that Mr. Whittington did not follow protocol and came up from behind the VP and didn't announce that he was there having gone off to fetch a quail. But we've talked to a bunch of hunters who say they've never heard of that, that there's no protocol like that. That the real problem is that the shooter has to be aware of where everyone in his party may be. Do you know anything about hunting protocol?"

The engaging Ms. Garcia wouldn't buy into Gibson's theory. Disclaiming much knowledge of hunting, she did allow that while "you're supposed to look before shooting, I think it would have been smart for Mr. Whittington to announce his presence."

Sorry, Charlie!


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: Texas
KEYWORDS: armstrong; charliegibson; cheny; dopeydems; gma; mediabias; shooting; whittington
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To: El Gato

P.S. I couldn't see the Veep accidentally shooting somebody who was right on top of him. I can sure see it happening at 30 yards, especially if there was some cover in the field, and he popped up or moved out of cover just as the shot was fired.


151 posted on 02/13/2006 9:35:46 AM PST by AnAmericanMother (Ministrix of Ye Chase, TTGC Ladies' Auxiliary (recess appointment))
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To: leadpenny
I'd like to know why it took so long for the story to come out.

It may have been because this was a rural location, and Cheney's people were more concerned about getting Mr. Wittington to the hospital and making sure he was cared for than running to the nearest phone to call the local radio or tv station.

Mountain - molehill

152 posted on 02/13/2006 9:37:09 AM PST by SuziQ
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To: VeniVidiVici
Cover-up? Why bother? To what ends would a cover-up serve?

Just pray that Harry Whittington doesn't have any connection to Jack Abramoff.

153 posted on 02/13/2006 9:38:47 AM PST by Willie Green (Go Pat Go!!!)
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To: Willie Green

Hadn't even thought about that - oh boy.


154 posted on 02/13/2006 9:42:07 AM PST by clawrence3
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To: River_Wrangler
Specially those AK 47 ones. You know, the ones in 12 gage that shoot a million times before the trigger is even pulled.

Like this?

Read all about it at Saiga-12 and Modern Firearms & Ammunition Available in 12, 20 and .410. Also in longer barreled sporting version.

155 posted on 02/13/2006 9:42:40 AM PST by El Gato
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To: governsleastgovernsbest
"Why didn't the White House tell everyone when this accident happened? Why did they wait so long and did that make a bad situation even worse?"

Why was this even anybody's business? Sheesh!

156 posted on 02/13/2006 9:47:17 AM PST by BlessedBeGod (Benedict XVI = Terminator IV)
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To: BlessedBeGod; governsleastgovernsbest

I have no problem this being made public, but I seriously question whether 24 hours over a weekend is "so long" - if a similar accident happened at midnight, and no one issued a press release until 6 a.m., is that "too long" as well?!


157 posted on 02/13/2006 9:50:46 AM PST by clawrence3
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To: clawrence3
Hadn't even thought about that - oh boy.

Good tinfoil hats are tough to come by nowadays.
Most of 'em have been outsourced.
My old one has been patched many times, but it still seems to fit.

158 posted on 02/13/2006 9:52:04 AM PST by Willie Green (Go Pat Go!!!)
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To: Willie Green

LOL - always good to bounce ideas off each other here - if nothing else to keep 3 steps in front of the enemy ; )


159 posted on 02/13/2006 9:53:45 AM PST by clawrence3
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To: Brilliant
"Who watches this trash?"

Nobody with a BRAIN!

Daytime TV sucks, starting with Imus!

Seem to be directed toward infant thru teenager.

160 posted on 02/13/2006 10:10:55 AM PST by FixitGuy
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To: Brilliant

"Who watches this trash?"

My tagline says it all ;-)


161 posted on 02/13/2006 10:15:33 AM PST by governsleastgovernsbest (Watching the Today Show Since 2002 So You Don't Have To.)
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To: governsleastgovernsbest

You must getting tired have to repeat that all the time.


162 posted on 02/13/2006 10:19:41 AM PST by clawrence3
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To: governsleastgovernsbest

The MSM was ignored. The MSM is irrelevant to life in America.


163 posted on 02/13/2006 10:22:14 AM PST by bert (K.E. N.P. Slay Pinch)
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To: colonialhk

The Democrat fault hunters and finders have an insatiable appetite for the "dark brown"!


164 posted on 02/13/2006 10:29:43 AM PST by VOYAGER
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To: clawrence3

The good news is that it shows that these threads continue to attract new readers. Sometimes it does get on my nerves when people snidely advise me to "stop wasting your time watching that trash", etc.


165 posted on 02/13/2006 10:29:49 AM PST by governsleastgovernsbest (Watching the Today Show Since 2002 So You Don't Have To.)
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To: beyond the sea
...emphasized that the White House tried to cover it up ....they waited SO LONG to disclose this important information to the public. Andrea was frothing at the mouth as usual.

"Andrea Mitchell is Barbra Streisand on peyote."

The White House has no obligation to tell these buttheads in the press everything or anything for that matter.

166 posted on 02/13/2006 10:30:53 AM PST by demlosers (Kerry: "Impeach Bush, filibuster Alito, withdraw from Iraq, send U235 to Iran, elect me President!")
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To: governsleastgovernsbest

You have already proven your infinitie patience simply by WATCHING those shows for us ; )

Here's an update from how the MSM peppered McClellan at the White House press "gaggle" today:

Published: February 13, 2006 11:30 AM ET

NEW YORK Reporters at White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan's Monday morning press "gaggle" peppered him with questions about the 18-hour delay in any word emerging on Vice President Cheney's shooting incident in Texas on Saturday.

McClellan explained that the White House knew about the accidental shooting of a fellow hunter on Saturday night, but deferred to the vice president's office, which did not announce it. The vice president's office in turn deferred to Katharine Armstrong, the ranch owner in Texas where the shooting took place. She called a Corpus Christi reporter at midday Sunday and only then did the news come out.

McClellan also said Monday, according to The Associated Press, that "Bush and senior aides were told Saturday night by the staff of the White House Situation Room that somebody in the Cheney's hunting party was shot, but he said he was not told until Sunday morning that Cheney was the shooter. He said he contacted the vice president's office and everyone agreed they needed to get the information to the public quickly."

He explained further, “The first priority… was making sure that Mr. Whittington was getting the medical care that he needed. The first priority Saturday night was making sure he receiving medical care and getting to the hospital and being taken care of, and that’s what happened. The vice president’s office was taking the lead on making sure the information got out, and it did. The vice president’s office worked with Mrs. Armstrong to get that information out.’’

Matt Cooper, the Time magazine reporter, said on CBS's "The Early Show" today, "It's clearly an accident, but the fact that the White House didn't release this information, that it sat around for almost a day is in itself, bizarre."

In an online chat at the Washington Post site, the paper's White House reporter Peter Baker said reporters in D.C. are "flabbergasted" by the shooting. He indicated that the Post was looking deeply into how it was reported to the local sheriff and the exact condition of the victim.

"It sure woke up a lot of folks here in Washington on a quiet, snowy Sunday," Baker said. "Whether the story has legs I suppose remains to be seen." He said the delay question is "being asked a lot in Washington today...

"I'm not sure there is a standard protocol when the vice president shoots someone, but it's fair to say reporters prefer that news be disclosed in a timely fashion."

In response to another query he revealed, "we are looking today into the issue of the local sheriff's office and what involvement they had in this. Stay tuned, more to come."

Asked if knew of any other vice president shooting a man, Baker replied: "Obviously there was Aaron Burr shooting Alexander Hamilton in a duel in 1804, but that was actually intentional and in that case the victim died."


167 posted on 02/13/2006 10:37:28 AM PST by clawrence3
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To: TexanByBirth
It no doubt took time to notify an ambulance, it took time for the ambulance to get there...it sure took time to get this gentleman to a hospital in Corpus Christi. Then there is the wait for the doctors to examine him...

Someone posted on a thread about this last night that Cheney has a medical entourage that goes everywhere with him, including an ambulance. When this incident occurred, the man immediately received the best medical care. There was no delay in treating the guy.

168 posted on 02/13/2006 10:59:30 AM PST by Steve1789 (Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power. -A.L.)
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To: governsleastgovernsbest
Good Morning America took took a double-barrelled blast at the Vice President Cheney this morning over his accidental shooting of a quail-hunting companion, suggesting the White House might have tried to cover up the incident

That's an idiotic assumption on the face of it. Even if the WH wanted to, there's no way the Veep shooting someone could be covered up by anybody for very long.

Just another example of a biased press trying to influence the public against the Bush administration and Republicans in general.
169 posted on 02/13/2006 11:05:01 AM PST by reagan_fanatic (Darwinism is a belief in the meaninglessness of existence - R. Kirk)
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To: iowamark

170 posted on 02/13/2006 11:15:54 AM PST by snugs (An English Cheney Chick - BIG TIME)
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To: leadpenny; Dane
"My point is that people really want to know even when they say they don't."

I think this was intended for Dane, so here it is.

171 posted on 02/13/2006 11:33:04 AM PST by Designer (Just a nit-pick'n and chagrin'n)
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To: governsleastgovernsbest

As if Good Morning America represented an unbiased news source. :::snicker:::


172 posted on 02/13/2006 12:46:13 PM PST by MEGoody (Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.)
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To: governsleastgovernsbest

The sheer silliness of this whole thing is blowing me away (probably a poor choice of words!) I know quite well how to handle a shotgun, how accidents happen, and how terribly excited non-shooting liberals are about this accident.

I am adding another FR comment to my BEST OF:


1. Best comment I've read...from another FR thread:

"Miss Kopechne could not be reached for comment"
12 posted on 02/13/2006 6:02:31 AM CST by saveliberty ( :-) I am a Snowflake and Bushbot.)


2. LOL. How bout these lines for Cheney's next press corps dinner speech;

"Ted Kennedy and I are going hunting this weekend. He's driving and I'm riding shotgun."

"I took my wife hunting with me. She was scared out of her wits but decided to stay after Teddy offered to drive her home."
32 posted on 02/13/2006 6:33:09 AM CST by Callahan


173 posted on 02/14/2006 4:25:34 AM PST by Maria S
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To: clawrence3

You still think this a fake controversy?


174 posted on 02/14/2006 2:16:44 PM PST by leadpenny
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To: leadpenny

Yes, the "delay to report the incident" is a fake controversy.


175 posted on 02/14/2006 2:21:37 PM PST by clawrence3
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To: clawrence3

The VP and his folks should have gotten out in front of whatever the story is and, since they didn't, there is no way it is going away any time soon. The President doesn't need this crap right now.


176 posted on 02/14/2006 2:33:56 PM PST by leadpenny
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To: leadpenny

If Dick Cheney had personally called David Gregory the minute after it had happened, this story was not "going away" - I think you and I said everything we had to say on this yesterday and simply disagree.


177 posted on 02/14/2006 2:44:56 PM PST by clawrence3
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