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Dumping Dick Cheney?

I don’t know what's going on in George Bush’s mind, but I suspect the idea that he may be thinking about replacing Dick Cheney - as the lead to Peggy Noonan’s article today suggests - is not very likely. This is a President who prizes loyalty and a man who steadfastly stuck by Don Rumsfeld when other Presidents would have bent to pressure and called for a replacement.
 
Fred Barnes does a great job in his new book, Rebel-in-Chief, explaining how Bush deals with the Washington chattering class and press corps. The White House may be tactically spinning the press with background comments that they're “not happy” with how Cheney handled this, but I suspect Bush personally got a laugh at how the national press corps got scooped by a small Texas paper.
 
This story reveals so much more, and not favorably, about the Beltway press and punditocracy than it does about Dick Cheney or the Bush administration. Tony Blankley describes the situation well:

the Washington press corp, and particularly the White House press corp, has developed, as an institution, a grossly dilated view of itself. Most of us can tolerate arrogance if it is accompanied by extraordinary capacity and virtuosity. The brilliant scientist, the war-winning general, the great artists are entitled to their pride.

But the hallmark of the Washington Press corp these days is mediocrity, groupthink, a lack of curiosity and rampant careerism……

We live at a moment of revolutionary change in the international order. The rise and violence of radical, possibly caliphate-forming Islam and the huge, culture-changing, unexamined consequences of rampant globalization make the present one of the least predictable moments to be alive.

Both government officials and citizens are in desperate need of a national press corp that is alive to the change and digging to find factual hints of the near future. We need the kind of future-oriented intellectual vigor, curiosity and genuine iconoclasm that typified American reporters in the first half of the last century.

Instead, as the shooting party incident exemplified, we have in the White House at the most elite level of American journalism, self-absorbed, self-important men and women who stand on their prerogatives even over marginal and inconsequential matters.

Assuming Mr. Whittington doesn’t die and there are not contradictions in Cheney’s account of what happened, this story is over, and it will have no lasting impact on the Bush administration. Because once again the MSM and the left have massively overreacted to a story in an attempt to damage the Bush administration, and the backlash against their overreaction will counteract whatever political damage this story may have caused.