The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

15 February 2006

Liberal TV, Radio Hosts Hope To Milk Cheney Situation


Desperately Seeking Scandal

UPDATED with video and FOX News/Hume interview links below

To prove Vice President
Dick Cheney's hunting accident is a full-fledged scandal, just how far are desperate liberal media types willing to go?

Proving nothing is off the table, Lawrence O'Donnell of MSNBC and McLaughlin Group fame wants the public to believe Cheney had been drinking! Beyond Dr. Pepper, is there an eyewitness report of anything consumed in liquid form?


Is there any other way to substantiate this allegation? Nope.

Evidence, who needs evidence? On the left, it's conspiracy-huntin' season.

Without hesitation, one could easily expect the left to go ballistic were conservatives to make similar baseless charges against a Democrat. Yet the Huffington Post went right ahead and published O'Donnell's sloppy, tinfoil hat-like conspiratorial speculation:

Was Cheney Drunk?

The L.A. Times is edging closer to the most likely reason for the 18 hour delay in reporting that the Vice President of the United States shot someone:

"This was a hunting accident," said Gilbert San Miguel, chief deputy of the Kenedy County Sheriff's Office. "There was no alcohol or misconduct."

How do we know there was no alcohol? Cheney refused to talk to local authorities until the next day. No point in giving him a breathalyzer then. Every lawyer I've talked to assumes Cheney was too drunk to talk to the cops after the shooting. The next question for the White House should be: Was Cheney drunk?

I have never gone hunting with ultra-rich Republicans on a Saturday afternoon, but I have seen them tailgating at Ivy League football games, so it's hard for me to believe that any of their Saturday lunches are alcohol free.

HuffPo didn't stop there, following up with another, even more conspiratorial piece by Cenk Uygur. An excerpt:

Sobering Discrepancies in Cheney's Story

There are several reasons why you might want to wait 24 hours before reporting that the Vice President has shot someone. One of them is not the official reason given - they first wanted to make sure the guy was okay. That might take a couple of hours, but not a whole day.

Instead they sit on the story for 24 hours and then have the ranch owner release it to a small local newspaper. I can think of only two possible explanations for this bizarre reaction.

They thought they might be able to bury it. But that's just nuts. What, the Corpus Christi paper runs a story about the Vice President shooting a friend in the head and no one else notices?

The second explanation is that they were buying time. Now, it's nearly impossible to know why. But since they won't tell us the real reason, we are forced into speculation. One obvious reason why someone would want to buy time before talking to anyone about an accident like this is because they are waiting to sober up.

The Secret Service wouldn't allow a local sheriff's deputy to talk to the Vice President that night. Why? How is that within their purview? Was the sheriff's deputy going to endanger the Vice President?

I want to make clear that I have no evidence that the Vice President had been drinking. But I also know the sheriff's office down in Kenedy County has no evidence to conclude that the Vice President was not drinking that night. They never gave him a breathalyzer test, as they almost certainly would have if this was an average citizen involved in a dangerous shooting. They never observed him that night - they weren't allowed to see him. They're taking the word of his friends who have a financial and personal interest in protecting the Vice President, and who also might have been drinking with him.

Note the distortions and exaggerations here: an 18-hour delay suddenly becomes 24, while the administration supposedly thought the Corpus Christi paper would bury the story (really, how do you know that?). In addition, note the strong guilty-until-proven-innocent assumption in both essays.

Regarding the delay, however long it really was, why exactly are we supposed to care? And when did it become a crime to disclose information to newspapers below a certain circulation size?

Another trend: they're clearly downplaying the "accident" aspect of this. Watch this line of "reasoning" next deteriorate into asserting he intentionally shot his longtime friend.

Now, to add to this increasingly manufactured controversy: was the Dr. Pepper bottle spiked? Just how conspiratorial can the left become?

If you need a good laugh, by the way, get a load of the HuffPo comments section. An example:

The LA Times stated today that one of the meals Cheney and friends ate had Dr. Pepper as the drink of choice. It's interesting that it made a point of mentioning that. Sure sounds a little odd to me.

Posted by: Pedagogy on February 14, 2006

Meanwhile, via a Cheney shooting incident wire story, Al Franken has seen (thanks to his liberal media friends) a substantial amount of free ink today. So far, this has run on the websites of hundreds of newspapers:

The first shooting involving a vice president since the time of Aaron Burr has lit up the blogosphere and late-night television with political jokesters lampooning Vice President Dick Cheney's weekend hunting accident as "Quailgate."

"You know who's doing a 'there but for the grace of God go I'? Scalia," wrote comedian Al Franken on his Web site, referring to Cheney's longtime duck-hunting friend, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

Sadly, other Air America talk hosts have so far been left out of the feeding frenzy. For all of them, a question: do you really think this can be milked beyond a few days?

UPDATE: Cheney to appear on the FOX News Channel at 6pm tonight (Wednesday).

Welcome Riehl World View, The Jawa Report and GOPinion readers!

UPDATE: Expose The Left has video of O'Donnell pulling this stunt on Scarborough Country. FOX News story on Hume interview with Cheney here.

Wednesday evening: HuffPo at it again, with even more conspiratorial foolishness:

The real story is already emerging, if you're willing to do a little digging. Cheney and Whittington went hunting with two women (not their wives), there was some drinking, and Whittington wound up shot. Armstrong didn't see the incident but claimed she had, Cheney refused to be questioned by the Sheriff until the next morning, and a born-again evangelical physician has been downplaying Whittington's injuries since they occurrred.

Neither the press nor law enforcement seems inclined to investigate.

Before the right-wing commenters howl - there's documentation for all of these statements. Let's take them one by one: In addition to Cheney and Whittington, the hunting party included Katherine Armstrong (who was in the car at the time of the shooting: more on that later). After lots of evasive comments that only referred to a "third hunter," we now know her identity: Pamela Willeford, the US Ambassador to Switzerland.

ALSO: via TVNewser, get a load of the soreheads at CNN, bitter that FOX got the exclusive Cheney interview!

Musing Minds has the full Cheney-Hume transcript here. Expose The Left has the video clip here. Hume says Cheney admits to having one beer earlier in the day. No doubt the left will assume he actually downed a 12-pack just before picking up the shotgun.

Your Amazon orders that begin with clicks here, regardless of what you ultimately order, help to support this site's efforts. Thanks again! In the spotlight: Robert Ferrigno's new thriller Prayers For The Assassin.


  • Ronnie Reagan was pushing the same booze angle last night on Hardball.

    By Blogger Pete, at 14 February, 2006 23:06  

  • Cheney does have two DUIs on his record, and that was a very careless shot. One also needs to ask why he wouldn't allow himself to be interviewed by law enforcement for over 18 hours.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 15 February, 2006 00:42  

  • uh oh.

    Looks like the soon to be reported check cutter to senor Baloney Maloney may have instructed his boy blunder to squelch the Cheney drinking story a wee bit early....

    See here for the now scrubbed MSNBC story where official Cheney spokewoman/fundraiser/private citizen who owns the quail factory states that there may have been a "couple of beers" involved.

    Sorry Chubs, Norm Coleman may want a refund.

    By Blogger Truthteller 1, at 15 February, 2006 00:50  

  • Truthteller: "the now scrubbed MSNBC story where official Cheney spokewoman/fundraiser/private citizen who owns the quail factory states that there may have been a 'couple of beers' involved."

    Puh-leeze. How can you call yourself "truthteller" when you can't even get this story right? It says NOTHING about "a 'couple of beers' involved," as you claimed.

    "Armstrong also told NBC News that she does not believe that alcohol was involved in the accident. She says she believes no one that day was drinking, although she says that there may have been beer available during a picnic lunch that preceded the incident. 'There may have been a beer or two in there,' she said, 'but remember not everyone in the party was shooting'."

    Your "conspiracy" is just that. It's UFO stuff. It seems you hoped that no one actually reads the article.

    Busted, fella.

    By Blogger frankenlies, at 15 February, 2006 10:25  

  • When the MSM puts in the same amount of effort into Kennedy-Chappaquiddick, then I'll take them seriously.

    Remember the lead investigator at the time said Kopechne was killed 'as if a gun were put to her head.'

    No word on that press investigation.

    By Blogger Sigmund, Carl and Alfred, at 15 February, 2006 10:41  

  • in those articles you listed, they say that it is only speculation. they have no proof, so does everyone who reads them. so why are you attacking people for speculating? that's like getting pissed at einstein when he first speculated about the theory of relativity. he turned out to be correct, and maybe these guys will too. maybe they won't. either way, you have no right to get mad because someone had a crazy thought. you children keep whining about the ted kennedy thing, so i'd say this makes us even.

    By Blogger hardcore conservative genious, at 15 February, 2006 10:46  

  • Larry the Liar O'Donnell said in the Huffington Compost in November, "I have it on good authority the there will be 22 to 27 indictments of high level whitehouse personnel in the "Plamegate" affair" There was 1 for Scooter Libby. He is full of ****. He is a blatant liar and wacko.

    By Blogger GregBoise, at 15 February, 2006 11:35  

  • from the MSNBC story the only direct quote from Armstrong was...
    'There may have been a beer or two in there,' she said, 'but remember not everyone in the party was shooting'."

    So, the eyewitness says there may have been a beer or two. That is the only definitive quote we have on alcohol being present.

    Saying "not everyone in the party was shooting" is a classic non denial denial.

    gregboise: careful of the shattered glass in your libby faces 5 indictments of obstruction and lying.

    Patrick Fitzgerald has engaged a new grand jury and as such, is expected to issue more indictments.

    Face it everyone, for better or worse, Cheney was drunk and Maloney is a paid right wing operative. (he doesn't support himself on amazon click throughs!)

    By Blogger Truthteller 1, at 15 February, 2006 13:20  

  • truth, you and lyin' baloney have both asserted that maloney is right-wing funded.

    While I don't find that at all hard to believe, I'd love to see the proof.

    On a side-note, the sheer balls that you display with your subtitle, Maloney, is seriously amusing - "Desperately seeking scandal" is the direct definition of your delusional campaign against AAR.

    By Blogger TJ, at 15 February, 2006 13:30  

  • Apparently all the world's other problems have been solved, because otherwise, Who cares about any of this?

    Cheny won't be running for President anyhow. He's not going to be removed from
    so what?

    By Blogger Lokki, at 15 February, 2006 13:51  

  • Sure Brian - you'd be quiet as a TURD if, back in 1998, Al Gore had shot a 78 year old in a face with a shot gun.

    O'Donnell is not the only one to bring up this theory - even "Liberal" Andrew Sullivan has mentioned it - it is quiet plausible.

    And can you right wing apologists ever defend Bush/Cheney without bring up a Democrat?

    By Blogger Robert, at 15 February, 2006 14:03  

  • If Cheney is to be believed, which in itself is a stretch, why believe he had only one brewskie? Why did he tell the cops to take a hike until the next day? Being just one of the socalled little guys, if I told the cops to come back the in another 14 hours after I shot someone, my door would be a pile of splinters.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 15 February, 2006 16:36  

  • The VP has admitted that they had a few brewskies, before he planted some shot in his heart. Oooohhhh, there's good hunting.

    Imagine if it a real person who told the cops to piss off until the next day?

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 15 February, 2006 17:32  

  • Come on Brian....Put your tin foil sobrerro back on.

    What would you be spewing if it were Clinton/Gore/Kerrey who shot a friend in the heart, and told the cops to stay away until the next morning?

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 15 February, 2006 17:37  

  • Apparently Occam's Razor means nothing to the liberal media.

    By Blogger Carl, at 15 February, 2006 17:50  

  • By the way, how many of you commenters ever been quail hunting with shotguns (both with and without dogs - if you have to ask you obviously never been quail hunting)? If you have, did you ever take and complete a hunter's safety course? Please don't expect me to take any of your criticism seriously from anyone who hasn't done both.

    By Blogger Carl, at 15 February, 2006 17:55  

  • By the way, Carl, thanks for the dissemmination, and the example of deliberate partisan ignorance.

    I've not seen/heard/read one thing in which anyone has honestly suggested what happened was anything more than possibly negligent, if not only an accident.

    Your BS-line about "if you haven't hunted, you can't understand" is wholly irrelevant.

    The realities of this issue are:

    1 - Cheney was sheltered from the authorities for no less than 12 hours
    2 - Cheney has admitted to drinking before the accident
    3 - the accident was not reported immediately - the issue here being that the usual chain of public notification was bypassed
    4 - scott mcclellan repeatedly soft-tailed the story

    But, thanks for adding to the usual, ridiculous, partisan dissemination that is the worst of american politics.


    By Blogger TJ, at 15 February, 2006 18:59  

  • Brian was very busy updating this story, but now he's very slow to post that Cheney himself admitted he "had a beer at lunch, hours before the shooting accident"...

    curious omission/lack of correction...

    By Blogger TJ, at 15 February, 2006 19:02  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger Steve M., at 15 February, 2006 20:19  

  • THE VICE PRESIDENT: Correct. We'd taken a break at lunch -- go down under an old -- ancient oak tree there on the place, and have a barbecue. I had a beer at lunch.

    --transcript of Cheney interview

    How dare that unhinged liberal Dick Cheney slander Dick Cheney that way!

    By Blogger Steve M., at 15 February, 2006 20:21  

  • "How dare that unhinged liberal Dick Cheney slander Dick Cheney that way!"

    I'm a bit confused by the comment.

    Anyhow, Cheney, a man who isn't running for any office, let alone President, took on the otherwise hopelessly run by Communists Washington Press Brigade and went to the only person who could give him a comfortable interview, Brit Hume--not one for taking any guff himself.

    In it Cheney said in essence "My Bad" though not said that way--you get the jist!

    AFAIC, this story is now over and through and time to, if you'll pardon me, move on. And besides, what the hell kind of reporter like David Gregory wears a PINK shirt to a presser?!

    "When the MSM puts in the same amount of effort into Kennedy-Chappaquiddick, then I'll take them seriously."

    I love that one! Someone should give that bloated blowhard socialist hypocrite a piece of their mind!

    By Blogger The Real Bob Anthony, at 15 February, 2006 21:15  

  • How long did the Clinton administration NOT tell the media about Vince Foster's murder, er, suicide?

    Try 30 hours.

    Clinton staffers stifled a cop's questioning of family members by muscling her out of the Foster's home and Clintonistas were seen REMOVING EVIDENCE FROM THE SCENE.

    If A Republican did that, there'd have been, uh, a little press coverage.

    Ted Kennedy knocks up and then murders a mistress, and that's all WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE, if the pun be pardoned -- or not.

    LIbEralS. That's why I'm in favor of abortion again - fewer of THEM!

    By Blogger Elnish Arundel, at 15 February, 2006 21:51  

  • our liberal motto "don't let the truth get in the way of good bashing" why does everyone keep saying that the secret service kept the cops away til the next day. it sounds nice, but sorry its not true. i will put a post to the police report if you want the truth maybe you should read it. if you want to stay in your liberal fantasy world then don't. the secret service called police to tell them and the cops said they would be their first thing in the morning. that was the police decision not cheneys. read the actual police report if you want the truth. keep reading these liars if you don't

    By Blogger, at 17 February, 2006 01:03  

  • here is the police report read it to see what really happened without the liberal bias

    By Blogger, at 17 February, 2006 01:07  

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