Cheney: "Figuring out how much influence Cheney has is a longtime Washington parlor game—but the answer is ultimately unknowable, given that almost all of his advice is offered privately, and both the president and his No. 2 zealously guard the details."

Cheney: "In the fall of 2003, as a federal criminal probe was just getting underway to determine who leaked the identity of CIA officer Valerie Plame to the media, I. Lewis 'Scooter' Libby, the then-chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, sought out Cheney to explain to his boss his side of the story. … At the time that Libby offered his explanation to Cheney, the vice president already had reason to know that Libby's account to him was untrue, according to sources familiar with still-secret grand jury testimony and evidence in the CIA leak probe, as well as testimony made public during Libby's trial over the past three weeks in federal court. Yet, according to Libby's own grand jury testimony, which was made public during his trial in federal court, Cheney did nothing to discourage Libby from telling that story to the FBI and the federal grand jury. Moreover, Cheney encouraged then-White House press secretary Scott McClellan to publicly defend Libby, according to other testimony and evidence made public during Libby's trial."

Cheney: "The evidence in the trial shows Vice President Dick Cheney and Mr. Libby, his former chief of staff, countermanding and even occasionally misleading colleagues at the highest levels of Mr. Bush’s inner circle as the two pursued their own goal of clearing the vice president’s name in connection with flawed intelligence used in the case for war."

Cheney: "Delivering speeches throughout the [Pacific] region, Cheney will arrive Tuesday in Japan, which has supported the U.S. effort in Iraq but whose defense minister recently criticized the invasion of Iraq as 'wrong.' He will close the trip Feb. 25 in Australia, whose prime minister is one of Bush's staunchest allies in the war. The vice president plans a rally for U.S. troops and a speech aboard the Yokosuka, Japan-based USS Kitty Hawk, the oldest U.S. Navy ship in service. He will have another rally at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam en route to Australia. … Despite some of Cheney's predictions about the U.S. mission in Iraq having been proved wrong—most notably his assertion in May 2005 that the insurgency was in its 'last throes'—he has retained his stature within the administration."

Creature says, "I have never despised a government official more," and I'm inclined to agree.

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