The Campaign Spot

The New, Slim, Kinder, Gentler Cheney Debuts

This morning on the Today show, a dramatically slimmer Dick Cheney reappears, leading off this morning’s Jolt . . .

Dick Cheney Compliments Obama! Well, Sort of. Kinda. Almost.

Hey, look, everyone, a Kumbaya moment! Former Vice President Dick Cheney is saying nice things about President Obama!

ABC News offers bits from an upcoming interview with Cheney: “Asked if he still believed that Obama has made America less safe, Cheney said his previous comments were in reference to concerns that Obama would roll back counterterrorism policies the Bush Administration had put in place, such as enhanced interrogation techniques and the terror surveillance program. ‘I think he’s found it necessary to be more sympathetic to the kinds of things we did,’ Cheney said, noting that it was ’all well and good’ that the Obama administration has ‘gotten active’ with the drone program against terrorists. But, Cheney said, he still worries that Obama does not have the same absolute commitment to preventing a terror attack that he and George W. Bush had simply because Obama has yet to go through a day like 9/11, as they did. ‘[Sept. 11] certainly stimulated in me and I think the president I worked for an absolute commitment that that’s never going to happen again on our watch. And that we’ll do whatever we have to do in order to prevent it,’ he said. ‘And I hope President Obama is to that point now where he has that same basic attitude. But we might never find out until there’s actually another attack.’”

See, the old hard-line Cheney would have said Obama was certainly a squish on the war on terror, and today the new, kinder, gentler, old softie Cheney is saying there’s a possibility he might not be a squish on the war on terror. Hey, there is a new tone in politics!

USA Today focuses on these quotes: “Cheney said Obama appears to have learned because he has ‘been through the fires of becoming president, and having to make decisions and live with the consequences . . . As I say, I think he’s found it necessary to be more sympathetic to the kinds of things we did,’ Cheney said. ‘They’ve gotten active, for example, with the drone program, using Predator and the Reaper to launch strikes against identified terrorist targets in the various places in the world.’”

Moe Lane: “Cheney genially praising Obama for showing the elementary good sense to follow George W Bush’s lead on the GWOT is pretty good stuff.  My only quibble there is that the former Vice President didn’t observe that the current President had really ‘grown in office’ in that regard; but then, that can be a killing insult, inside the Beltway.  The doctors probably told Cheney to take it easy until he’s more comfortable with his cyborg body . . .”

I saw nothing on Daily Kos or other blogs about this Monday night, and perhaps they’re not as Cheney-obsessive as they used to be; maybe Palin Derangement Syndrome squeezes out the time they used to be able to devote to hating other prominent conservatives. Expect Cheney to dominate a news cycle or two with his typically blunt assessments.

Also note this point in the addendum: “Be warned: All of Washington will be unproductive Tuesday morning, on account of some ice and snow. This presumes, of course, that Washington has some measurable productivity on a regular Tuesday morning.”


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