This is surreal…even more surreal than former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer’s ability to deliver press conferences from Bizarroland in which reporters’ questions were asked, only to be deftly deflected by irrelevant non-answers. Flipping the tables a bit, and following the lead of his boss, Vice President Dick Cheney, after throwing out the opening pitch for the Chicago Cubs-Cincinnati Reds game, spent a few minutes on Monday being interviewed from the radio booth by sports announcers Marty Brennaman and Joe Nuxhall – while the game was in progress – resulting in perhaps the most bizarrely irrelevant back-and-forth to be made available on the White House’s press transcript page since, well, ever.
Cheney on life at the White House:
Q: Is this a welcome break for you?
THE VICE PRESIDENT: It really is. I’ve got to go on tonight. I was in the White House this morning with the President. I’ve got a speech in New Orleans tonight, and I’ll be back in the White House tomorrow. But, sure, to get a few hours out here at the ball park, it doesn’t get much better than this.
Q: Kerry Wood at the plate, and a diving jab at the ball and knocked down by Castro. If he doesn’t touch it, Larkin fields it, a run scores and it’s a 5 to 2 ball game. So if Castro doesn’t touch the ball, Larkin is right there. But he doesn’t know that.
Cheney on current events, uncluding, presumably, the election and the situation in Iraq:
Q: A ball and a strike to Grudzielanek, and the stretch and the pitch: breaking ball drops in for a called strike, and a 1-2 count to Mark Grudzielanek. He is one for two this afternoon, has scored a run.
Q: Busy year for you folks, huh?
THE VICE PRESIDENT: Looks that way.
Q: It sure does. (Laughter.)
THE VICE PRESIDENT: A lot of work going on, a lot of stuff happening around the world, and then, of course, the campaign on top of that.
Cheney on his campaign itinerary:
Q: So now you’re in New Orleans tonight?
THE VICE PRESIDENT: In New Orleans tonight, and there’s a Senate race down there next year, or this — come November. And as I say, I’ll be back in Washington late tonight, and then be in the office tomorrow. I’m out on the road usually a couple days a week. And then on Friday, I take off for Asia for a week.
Q: Lidle delivers, and Patterson a swing and a miss. And it’s a 1-2 count to Corey Patterson.
Cheney on the economy:
Q: Are you pleased with the way things look as far as the economy is concerned?
THE VICE PRESIDENT: I am. I think all the signs are headed in the right direction.
Q: One-two pitch, swung on and missed. And Lidle picks up his second strike-out.
THE VICE PRESIDENT: And, of course, the employment numbers are looking good. We got those out last week. We’ve got some 400,000 jobs created here in the last couple of months, since the 1st of the year. So everything is, I think, moving in the right direction.
(via Al Kamen’s article in the April 7, 2004 Washington Post)