The press has just besieged Scott McClellan on the topic of Cheney’s stay fire. Should the Vice President resign? Should criminal charges be filed? Isn’t this too dangerous an activity for important persons to be doing?
These and other urgent questions occupy the conference. But the mask finally slips when one intrepid reporter suggests the trickle-up of shooting news from incident site to White House was reminiscent “of the levee story.”
Oh, but did McClellan ever reject that insinuation. The press is rabid over the story’s breaking in Corpus Christi courtesy of a private, not public, personage — i.e., no splash for the national news. The White House communications bureaucracy might have a faulty pipeline — one imagines it should be kept in the loop on matters such as these. But should the government PR machine dance to the media tune of instant access to instant news? Cheney accidentally kills a man — news. Cheney accidentally shoots a man — at what point is the public on a need-to-know basis?