Tuesday :: Feb 14, 2006

Whittington Suffers Heart Attack From Cheney Shooting


by Steve


This isn’t good.

The 78-year-old lawyer who Vice President Cheney accidentally shot in a hunting accident suffered a minor heart attack this morning after a piece of birdshot moved and lodged in his heart, doctors said. Doctors treating Harry Whittington said the Republican lawyer was moved back into the intensive care unit and will need to remain hospitalized for at least a week.
"Some of the birdshot appears to have moved and lodged into part of his heart," Peter Banko, spokesman for Christus Spohn Memorial Hospital, told reporters outside the Corpus Christi hospital. Banko said the birdshot caused a minor heart attack.
Asked if the birdshot could move more and endanger Whittington's life, Dr. David Blanchard, emergency room chief at the hospital, said: "When birdshot is in your body, there's always the risk they can move. We'll watch very closely for any migration."
Banko said cardiologists at the hospital were consulting with White House doctors because the doctors had first treated Whittington after Cheney accidentally shot him on a Texas ranch.

Why does that statement trouble me so much, knowing how long it took for the Secret Service and White House to acknowledge this to anyone, and the fact that the Secret Service would not let local law enforcement interview Cheney until the next day, when additional critical facts about the shooting could have been learned?

Blanchard said only one piece of birdshot was causing Whittington's heart problems at the moment. "This is the only one we are concerned about," he said.
They said Whittington had no symptoms of a heart attack and that the heart attack was caused by inflammation from the birdshot.

And no amount of joking around by Scottie McClellan will change the fact that Whittington, a 78 year-old man who was relatively healthy before being shot by Shooter, may need surgery now to remove a birdshot pellet from his heart. And if they have to cut this guy open to get this piece of birdshot, then all bets are off.

Yes, there are far more important things to pay attention to today, like what the GOP is doing to pass tax cuts while the White House gives Big Oil a $7 billion handout and cuts health care programs for critical care, the elderly and kids; like what the White House and Israel are trying to do to light a match to the Palestinians over a Hamas victory they both helped create; and like what the Bush Administration did to blow up our ability to see what is going on inside Iran. But once again, the White House’s imperial attitude and propensity to cover things up that would be better dealt with through a “yeah, we screwed up but let’s keep our eyes on the bigger picture” approach is costing them today.

Well, no matter what, thanks to Howie Kurtz for throwing us a bone today.

Image courtesy of MSNBC

Steve :: 11:23 AM :: Comments (88) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!