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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Stupidest "news" (in an op-ed) of the summer so far: GOP party elders "could" visit Bush "today" to persuade him to dump Dick Cheney for Fred Thompson

According to Sally Quinn, in an op-ed in Tuesday's WaPo:

The big question right now among Republicans is how to remove Vice President Cheney from office. Even before this week's blockbuster series in The Post, discontent in Republican ranks was rising."

Why, yes! We in the right-most hemisphere of the blogosphere have been writing of little else this week than impeaching Vice President Cheney! Indeed, I believe this subject has filled almost 98% of all talk-radio hours for the past week, and as Sen. Trent Lott informs us, talk radio runs America. Discontent with Vice President Cheney is virtually drowning all us Republicans, but it's awfully astute of her to notice. Glub glub, tell me more!

Sally Quinn"Today, [a] group of [GOP] party elders, led by Sen. John Warner of Virginia, could well" go to President Bush to tell him that Vice President Cheney is "toxic" and has to go, writes Ms. Quinn.

Surely she knows about such matters, because Ms. Quinn's Wikipedia entry tells us is "an American author and journalist. She is also considered one of the arbiters of society and mainstream opinion in Washington, D.C." And, it tells us, Ms. Quinn "is married to Benjamin C. Bradlee, the former editor of the Washington Post and her former boss."

(Not that that's relevant. Just forget that I even mentioned it. After all, we need look no farther than Rosie O'Donnell to confirm that one doesn't need a powerful husband to get profoundly silly theories spread through the mainstream media. All that's relevant about her background is, as the WaPo byline discloses, that "The writer is co-host, with John Meacham, of On Faith, an online conversation about religion." Perhaps it was angels who appeared to Ms. Quinn to confide in her that President Bush's overriding concern now is to be freed up to "concentrate on AIDS and the environment in hopes of salvaging his legacy.")

Said Republican party elders "could act out of concern for our country's plummeting reputation throughout the world, particularly in the Middle East," Ms. Quinn notes in her op-ed. Hmmm. Notice the repeated use of the conditional tense? I suppose Harry Reid could also pick today to apologize to the American armed forces presently in harm's way for having publicly declared that the war is lost and that their leaders are incompetent, and he could pick today to issue a ringing declaration to our enemies that they ought no longer count on Reid Pelosi & Co. to keep doing their work for them in the Capitol Building. But I'm not holding my breath.

"For such a plan to work, however, [the Administration] would need a ready replacement," explains Ms. Quinn. Neither Giuliani, McCain, nor Romney would suit, but: "That leaves Fred Thompson. Everybody loves Fred."

Vice President Richard B. CheneyMs. Quinn even provides the Administration with the public excuse it needs to ease Mr. Cheney out: He needs to have the batteries changed in his pacemaker over the summer months. Clearly Ms. Quinn is wasted as an occasional WaPo columnist. A woman of her creativity obviously needs to be in the CIA, planning covert international disinformation campaigns. (Unless ... Do you think maybe she already is? Quick, someone call Bob Novak and ask him ....)

I've read the first two parts of WaPo's "blockbuster series" on the Veep. It contains absolutely startling revelations. Did you know, for example, that President Bush highly values Vice President Cheney's opinions, and often accepts his recommendations? That Mr. Cheney is the most powerful and effective Vice President in history, whose influence shocked and surprised even Dan Quayle?

I mean, who knew? Another scoop for the Washington Post! (Someone call the Harry Ransom Center at UT-Austin — maybe they can buy Ms. Quinn's archival papers to add to Woodward's & Bernstein's!)

Apparently based mostly on previous public reporting — spiced up just a bit with some unattributed sources who, from the context, seem to have considerable reason to leak opinions and tidbits hostile to Mr. Cheney — the first three parts of the four-part "blockbuster series" haven't yet actually revealed anything that's terribly surprising or controversial, even if it's all gospel truth. In fact, let me give you a hint, Ms. Quinn: Most of us here in the Red States who are reading it have been saying aloud to ourselves (since, ya know, we have to move our lips while we read) things like: "You tell 'em, Dick!" and "Damn, I'm glad that there's someone else besides Dubya with cajones in this Administration!"

(And we among the faithful may need some reminders this week of past principled fights that were more worth the fighting, given what may result from the Senate cloture fight(s) on the Administration-sponsored immigration legislation.)

In fact, some of us have been saying to ourselves, Ms. Quinn, that the very fact that political insiders will betray the Administration's trust so egregiously to leak this sort of high-level gossip to the Washington Post — violating, for example, not only executive but attorney-client privilege in the process — pretty well vindicates our Vice President's legendary secretiveness. (Me, I'm thinking a little dunk in the water for some of those leakers might be a no-brainer, but then, I'm a fascist Rethuglican Neanderthal.) 

Thompson_cigar Certainly the likes of Ms. Quinn, though, are useful to show us the far opposite extremes of the Washington spectrum that runs between serious statesmen and supercilious airheads, all of whom may nonetheless attend the same Kennedy Center performances and Beltway dinner parties.

I genuinely hope Sen. Thompson does another quick internet video, like the one he did to respond to Michael Moore, to address this unsought and deeply silly endorsement by Ms. Quinn. In comic deftness points, Fred's already ahead of Hillary by about 88 to 6. I know Washington is a target-rich environment for satire, but this opportunity is certainly a good chance to widen his lead.


UPDATE (Tue Jun 26 @ 10:50am): Reactions to Ms. Quinn's op-ed from both left and right have been, to put it mildly, skeptical. Captain's Quarters: "I'd like to have a shot of what Sally Quinn's drinking." Outside the Beltway: "This has to be the dumbest thing I’ve seen from a major journalist in quite some time." Comments from Left Field: "Thinking about this, though, is silly. There is no way in HELL you are pushing Cheney out." FireDogLake: "I know we have to pass the time somehow, but how about we try some actual news reporting for a change?"

Posted by Beldar at 03:42 AM in Humor, Politics (2007) | Permalink


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(1) Mark L made the following comment | Jun 26, 2007 7:03:29 AM | Permalink

What makes this even sillier is that the Senate has to confirm the choice of VP. They cannot consider the issue until the VP office is empty, and until they *do* confirm Nancy Pelosi is heir-apparent.

Can you say filibuster, boys and girls? Followed by a bill of impeachment in the House?

The impeachment may not follow, but you can be sure the Democrats are going to do Fred Thompson no political favors by putting him a heartbeat away from the President.

(2) craig henry made the following comment | Jun 26, 2007 7:32:36 AM | Permalink

I love this dump Cheney talk in the media. They seem to think the VP is just another appointed post like assistant- deputy-under-secretary of education for kickball eradication.

Does anyone think that Cheney, who is keen to protect the privileges of executive branch, is going to let Senators reduce the Vice Presidency just another political post?

(3) Kent made the following comment | Jun 26, 2007 9:50:05 AM | Permalink

Sally Quinn?!!

I recently read a transcript of a press seminar sponsored by Pew, whose purpose was to clear up misconceptions about Mormonism in connection with Mitt Romney's run for President. I was deeply impressed with the quality of the seminar and of the questions being asked by the members of the press. Only one of the members of the press who were present came across as bigoted against Mormonism, and determined to remain bigoted about Mormonism:

Sally Quinn.

Take it for whatever it's worth.

(4) Sam made the following comment | Jun 26, 2007 10:32:56 AM | Permalink

The Vice President has a chest of drawers?

see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cojones

(5) markg8 made the following comment | Jun 26, 2007 1:41:51 PM | Permalink

Sally Quinn is the grand dame of Washington cocktail party circuit, which in case you haven’t noticed has been dominated, like DC itself for years by Republicans. If she says Repubs are looking for a way to ease Dick out and replace him you can bet there’s some fire behind that smoke.

She's not talking Republican party nonentities like rightwing bloggers or voters in her article. She's talking about big money donors (see that article the other day about CEOs going to Hillary and Obama in droves?) and politicians who know they'll drown if they keep standing on the deck of the USS Iraq yelling the ship isn't sinking.

With McConnell and Lugar making noises about pulling the plug on Dick’s favorite war he may not want to be around for the final act. OTH Cheney is a warrior and he’ll most likely fight til the last
breath of the Republican party.

And why wouldn’t Ol’ Fred wanna be Veep for a year and a half? It’s the closest he’s ever gonna get to the White House. And who knows, without Cheney to serve as the fire to Bush’s frying pan impeachment just might go forward and Ol’ Fred might even become president for a month or two.

BTW where do I send my check for the Cheney Memorial? As a Dem I want him remembered for the centuries to come.

(6) markg8 made the following comment | Jun 26, 2007 1:48:52 PM | Permalink

BTW Dems have no interest in making Pelosi president. We like our presidential candidates. Kucinich has all of 3 co-sponsors for his Cheney impeachment bill and Pelosi has said herself impeaching Bush isn't worth it. It'd take too long.

You'll take your lumps the old fashioned way: at the polls.

(7) DRJ made the following comment | Jun 26, 2007 10:10:39 PM | Permalink

I'm conservative and the only person I still like in the Bush Administration is Cheney.

(8) hunter made the following comment | Jun 27, 2007 5:50:56 AM | Permalink

Great post. And you got some really fascinating people to share some interesting ideas.
I think Ms. Quinn confuses drinking talk with planning, in her role as grand dame and arbiter of DC social life.

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