U.S. : BUSINESS AS USUAL
Bush & Cheney Resign Hastert Wrestles with U.S. Presidency
01 Apr 2004 00:04 GMT
Washington- Last night’s surprise announcement from the Whitehouse that both George W. Bush and Richard Cheney are stepping down from office sent Washington wags into a tailspin of confusion and controversy. Both Republican leaders have been under fire recently for mishandling of the so-called War on Terrorism and their actions with regard to the 9/11 tragedy, but no one close to the Whitehouse expected such a move. "It appears as if Bush and Cheney just cut bait and bailed", said former administration spokesman Imma Fisher, "the whole town is in turmoil." It's not certain if the present hearings on 9/11 have any bearing on the unexpected turn of events or that rumors of the U.S. Treasury being found empty in the early hours of the morning is somehow related to the sudden departure.
Secret Service agents have sent a detachment to protect David Hastert, the Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives who, according to the U.S. Constitution, is next in line for the presidency in the event of such a crisis. However, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, in a hastily called press conference at the Pentagon has claimed that he will assume the job of president "since no one’s paying any attention to the constitution anyway".
Rumsfeld further stated, "The country is at war, constant war, and we need a constant war president. One that’s constant, constantly at war. Would such a president need to be strong? Yes. Would he have to go it alone when the going gets tough? Of course. Am I that man? Obviously!" Referring to Hastert, a former wrestling coach, the Secretary, also a former wrestler in college, noted: "who ever assumes the role of president of the United States must have a good grip on the issues we face. Do I have a hold on such issues? Certainly! Does Mr. Hastert? Not really."
Hastert, however, is contesting Rumsfeld’s claim. In his own hastily called press conference on Capital Hill the Speaker said: "Regardless of recent legislative efforts to subvert the constitution and the rule of law in the United States, we still have some traditions that must be honored. The succession of the presidency is one of those traditions. If it weren’t so we wouldn’t have a former President Ford." Asked what he intended to do with regard to the Secretary of Defense’s claim to the office, Hastert said: "Mr. Rumsfeld has been under a great deal of stress lately. The quaqmire..er… occupation of Iraq, the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan, the stress of managing coups in Haiti, Venezuela, and all those other little nations has taken a toll on the Secretary. I feel certain Mr. Rumsfeld will reconsider his position once he sees all the facts."
Meanwhile, back at the ranch in Crawford, Texas, the former occupant of the Whitehouse is taking time off to enjoy a rodeo and barbeque held in his honor by friends in the oil industry. Mr.Bush, who would not comment on this report, was accompanied by his former aides Paul Wolfowitz and Karl Rove as they watched other rodeo clowns and trick riders do their routines.
Mr. Cheney, on the other hand, has taken up residence at an undisclosed location. It is rumored that National Security Advisor, Condolesa Rice may be joining him.
# # # #
(Help for this report came from Faux News and the Few Charitable Trusts for Reporting)