For 22 hours, the White House concealed the fact that Vice President Cheney had inadvertantly shot a 78-year old man, Harry Whittington.
The White House continues to withhold critical information from the press. In a press conference today, hospital administrator Peter Banko said that the White House had been informed that Mr. Whittington suffered a heart attack between 9:30–10AM this morning. Watch it:
But at today’s White House Press Briefing, which started after 12PM, Scott McClellan didn’t tell the press. CNN confirmed that McClellan “was notified [about the heart attack] just before the briefing.” But McClellan suggested to reporters that he had no new information:
I don’t want to make this about anything other than what it is. It is what it is. I was very respectful and responsive to your questions yesterday. I provided you the information I knew based on the facts that were available… I’m just not going to go back through it again.
McClellan concluded “You’re welcome to continue to focus on these issues. I’m moving on.” Too bad Mr. Whittington can’t do the same. He’ll be in the hospital for at least another week.
Banko press conference transcript:
QUESTION: What time did you notify the White House this morning and did you tell them, when you notified them, that he had a minor heart attack?
ADMINISTRATOR: Our cardiologists probably talked to him shortly after the cardiac cath was done, between 9:30 and 10:00 am this morning.
QUESTION: And you did tell them he had a minor heart attack?
ADMINISTRATOR: I did not hear the conversation that the cardiologists had amongst themselves, so I can’t tell you what — And heart attack is a layman’s term, so they went into a little more clinical detail.