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Things That Make You Go Hmmm….


Today’s White House Briefing raises a couple of interesting questions, and I wanted to bring them to everyone’s attention here.

The first was about the change in President Bush’s presser timing yesterday and the rambling answers he gave to audience questions — often completely unresponsive to the actual question itself.

So what’s the point of taking questions, if not to answer them? Could it be to simply appear to be answering questions? Or just to repeat, repeat, repeat?

Yesterday, you almost got the feeling that he was just talking to run down the clock.

But why would he do that? One possible reason yesterday was: To preempt any television coverage of a press conference at which leading Democrats were unveiling their Bush-bashing security agenda.

Indeed, Bush’s event had originally been scheduled for 1:20 p.m. yesterday. But Tuesday afternoon, the White House suddenly moved it up to 12:50. The Democratic press conference was scheduled to start at 1. Bush finally wrapped up his talk at 2:22. Anyone know when the Democrats stopped talking? Anybody see anyone in the audience giving him hand signals?

American politics has a long, long history of political trickery. But oughtn’t reporters pay attention to the maneuvers and actually report on them if they are occurring — instead of just letting them pass by unremarked to the public at large? Isn’t the part and parcel of the whole gig? Or are reporters on the WH beat too afraid of having their cocktail weenie invites revoked if they tell the whole truth about Presidential political maneuvering? It will be interesting to see if there is any answer to this question from anyone at all.

The second is just a nitpicky little thing, really, but it comes up in the transcript of a Tony Snow interview of VP Cheney. Why does Fox News refer to Dick Cheney as "The President Cheney" in their transcript? Just askin’. (And good on Best of Both Worlds for catching it.)

Boy, that Dick Cheney, what a card.

And this is just plain interesting, for everyone who has been watching the poll number trends over the past few months. What this means for the Fall elections is anyone’s guess — but you can bet that Karl Rove will be amping up that "don’t let gays adopt children" rhetoric even more if this continues. Because, you know, Presidential incompetence and inadequacy can always be trumped by a little, old-fashioned "values" manipulation, can’t it?

Man, let’s hope not.

And this…this is just desserts. Never pick a fight with someone who has a photo of you doing the very thing you said you didn’t do. I’m just saying. Amazing how that whole express evidence thing can come back to bit you in the…erm…ass.

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com