I don’t even think the name “Cheney” passed the lips of anyone this week on This Week.
In case any of you might have harbored the hopeful thought that George Stephanopoulos might cover the astonishing news that according to Mr. Cheney, (and he should know, shouldn’t he?), his Vice-Presidency is not an “entity” within the Executive branch, and even if you only harbored an iota of an iota therein, no, wrong again; I don’t even think the name “Cheney” passed the lips of anyone this week on This week.
Perhaps you were thinking of the questions you could have thrown at Senator Kennedy or Senator Sessions on this latest example of the imperial Presidency? Well, for heaven’s sake, that’s why George gets to be on the telly every week…and you don’t.
Or perhaps you expected that Incurious George would stick with immigration and Iraq for his guest interviews, but that surely the roundtable would spend some time on the story, especially since the Washington Post today published the first of a four part series on Cheney’s secretive ways.
Perhaps I’m being unfair; perhaps the roundtable was taped on Friday, so that all the principals, which included, besides George Will and Lil’ George, Fareed Zakaria, Torie Clarke, and Jake Tapper, could get to their summer homes, at the shore, lakeside, on the island. Come to think of it, don’t you often have the feeling that the show could be taped at any point during the week and shown on Sunday, for all the difference it would make in what gets covered and what gets said?
No wonder the beltway 500 are so enamored of consensus building; it’s how they do journalism.
And is there any better spokesman for consensus than Lil’ George? Not bloody likely.
Okay, now to what did get said.
Billed as a “liberal lion,” Senator Kennedy played the part extremely well this morning. He defended his sponsorship of the comprehensive immigration package that is set for a revival in the Senate as “tough, fair, and practical.”
Kennedy insisted that the bill will pass. No, it’s not amnesty, but what it does is allow 12 million plus human beings who are here already, to come out of the shadows. Kennedy claimed that Democrats have strong support for the bill from important constituent groups, like Hispanics, liberal churches, labor, and he also emphasized that the bill dealt with the concerns of those Americans who see porous borders and worry about national security.
In the face of George’s litany of increasing negatives, like a drop in support according to polls, defection of someone like Senator Menendez of New Jersey, Kennedy was relentlessly positive and optimistic. When George insisted on returning again and again to the lack of support among those core Democratic supporters, the liberal lion provided a small civics lesson.
The bill is a compromise he reminded George, it is not the same bill that Democrats would have written if they only needed Democratic support to pass it. This is what being a legislator is all about, getting things done.