Bush, Cheney meet for first time since leaving office

February 26, 2010

Former President George W. Bush and his former vice president, Dick Cheney, got together Thursday for the first time since they left office in January 2009.

The meeting took place at Cheney’s house in McLean, Virginia, just three days after the former vice president suffered a mild heart attack and was hospitalized overnight. An ABC News camera captured the moment.
BUSH
“Mr. President, welcome,” Cheney said as Bush stepped from the back of a sport utility vehicle.

“Looking good,” Bush said.

“Holding up alright,” Cheney replied.

“Looking good,” the former president said again as the two shook hands warmly.

“Could be worse,” Cheney said.

The meeting came on the eve of a gathering of Bush administration alumni in Washington.

Both men had been scheduled to attend the session, but Cheney, 69, had to withdraw because of the heart attack, his fifth since age 37 and his first since shortly before becoming vice president in 2001.

Bush called Cheney at the hospital to wish him well and when it became clear the former vice president would not be able to make the alumni reunion, they arranged to meet separately.

Bush has remained largely out of the public eye since leaving office.

But Cheney has been a public and vocal apologist for the administration, especially in its conduct of the war against al Qaeda, the handling of prisoners taken during the conflict and the decision to go to war in Iraq.

He has been aggressive about challenging President Barack Obama, telling conservative Republicans last week in Washington that the Democratic leader would be a “one-term president.”

The relationship between Bush and Cheney reportedly soured toward the end of their eight years in office after the president decided not to issue a full pardon to I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Cheney’s former chief of staff.

Libby was convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice during an investigation to determine who told the news media that Valerie Plame was an undercover CIA operative.

Plame’s identity leaked as the Bush administration tried to discredit her husband, former U.S. diplomat Joseph Wilson, who accused the Bush administration of manipulating intelligence to justify the Iraq war.

Libby never served his prison sentence because Bush commuted it, but the president reportedly resisted Cheney’s pressure during the closing months of the administration to issue a full pardon.

For more Reuters political news, click here.

Photo credit: Reuters/Larry Downing (Cheney listens as Bush discusses the transition to a new administration following the November 2008 election)

6 comments

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Bush and Cheney should meet again soon, in The Hague.

Posted by HBC | Report as abusive

HBC.

For what?

Even, the White House lawyers who provided legal advice were cleared of wrongdoing by the courts.

My opinion is that the historical test of time when political emotions have diminished enough for a rational discussion to take place that they will be shown to have protected us from another terrorist attack.

Another opinion I have is that I do not feel safer today than I did just over a year ago.

Posted by TyC | Report as abusive

Oh, really? What courts were those TyC? My opinion is that you have no idea what you are talking about-again.

Posted by Yellow105 | Report as abusive

Yellow.

I guess you are right. I should have said Justice Department.

Oh, here is what CNN said:

“Bush administration lawyers who wrote “torture” memos have been cleared of allegations of professional misconduct after a Justice Department internal investigation, which recommends no legal consequences for their actions.”

Have a nice day.

Posted by TyC | Report as abusive

You don’t feel safer today because of what was done in your name yesterday, QED.

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/th e_daily_dish/2010/02/cheney-i-was-a-big- supporter-of-waterboarding.html

But that’s not all the water that’s gone under various nasal bridges.

You just can’t kill a million civilians on a false pretext and seriously expect to get away with it for ever. As Bush, Cheney, Blair and whatever Blackwater’s calling itself these days are going to have to learn, the hard way. The sooner the better.

Read on:

http://www.stopwar.org.uk/

Obama needs to get off his bipartisan duff and prosecute, or this will be taken care of internationally, with him on the list too. That’s how it works.

Posted by HBC | Report as abusive

HBC.

Interesting to note that after the Christmas day bomber was taken into custody, Rasmussen reported that 58 percent thought waterboarding and other harsh interrogation techniques should be used to extract information from the terrorist who tried to blow up an airplane full of people.

My oh my…how things change when people are threatened on their own soil.

But that isn’t the reason I don’t feel safer today. You can play that game of thinking for a person if you want to, but you would be wrong.

As for prosecuting anyone, it won’t happen. It isn’t justified and the American people don’t want it either. There are a lot of democrats who will go down with that sinking ship if it goes that way.

Oh, just my opinion…as always.

Posted by TyC | Report as abusive