December 30th, 2009
06:25 PM ET
11 months ago

White House forcefully responds to Cheney

The White House is responding forcefully to former Vice President Dick Cheney's comments Wednesday that are sharply critical of President Obama's response to the botched terror attack on Christmas Day.
The White House is responding forcefully to former Vice President Dick Cheney's comments Wednesday that are sharply critical of President Obama's response to the botched terror attack on Christmas Day.

(CNN) - The White House is responding forcefully to former Vice President Dick Cheney's comments Wednesday that are sharply critical of President Obama's response to the botched terror attack on Christmas Day.

"It is telling that Vice President Cheney and others seem to be more focused on criticizing the Administration than condemning the attackers," White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer wrote on the White House's official blog. "Unfortunately too many are engaged in the typical Washington game of pointing fingers and making political hay, instead of working together to find solutions to make our country safer."

The response comes hours after Cheney delivered a blistering statement saying the administration's response is proof that the president "is trying to pretend we are not at war."

"He seems to think if he gives terrorists the rights of Americans, lets them lawyer up and reads them their Miranda rights, we won't be at war," Cheney said in the statement. "He seems to think if we bring the mastermind of 9/11 to New York, give him a lawyer and trial in civilian court, we won't be at war. He seems to think if he closes Guantanamo and releases the hard-core al Qaeda-trained terrorists still there, we won't be at war."

Cheney also said Obama outwardly "pretends we aren't [at war]," and the former vice president repeated his months-long criticism that the new president has made America "less safe."

In his blog posting Wednesday, Pfeiffer writes the Bush-Cheney strategy of focusing on Iraq led to a strengthened al-Qaeda on the boarder region between Afghanistan and Pakistan, and maintained it is President Obama's new policy of focusing resources on the war in Afghanistan that has made the country more safe.

"To put it simply: this President is not interested in bellicose rhetoric, he is focused on action," Pffiefer writes. "Seven years of bellicose rhetoric failed to reduce the threat from al Qaeda and succeeded in dividing this country. And it seems strangely off-key now, at a time when our country is under attack, for the architect of those policies to be attacking the President."

Pfeifer also takes issue with the former vice president's contention that Obama "pretends we aren't at [war]," saying the president and members of his administration have referred to being at war with al Qaeda several times.

"There are numerous…public statements that explicitly state we are at war," writes Pfeifer. "The difference is this: President Obama doesn't need to beat his chest to prove it, and – unlike the last Administration – we are not at war with a tactic ("terrorism"), we at war with something that is tangible: al Qaeda and its violent extremist allies. And we will prosecute that war as long as the American people are endangered."


Filed under: Dick Cheney • Extra • President Obama
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. gary davis Harbor Oregon proud american

    great job and america needs to stand with the president and tell CHENEY to shut up and the media needs to also tell cheney .we don't want to hear from you . he isn't involved in the daly schedual of events .so go play with your self . maybe now that Rove is single the two of them can move into gether and play with each other . maybe that will keep them busy couple of war mongering jerks need to be in jail. so close your mouth Cheney unless you can help support our president . or move to some 3rd world country and you can be a GOD like you want to be .. but you won't have the protection of our great nation . so oh well bye bye jerk :)

    December 30, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  2. scout2241

    Dick Cheney needs to shut his mouth. He spent eight years undermining this nation and its constitution. And most of us know that he was a draftdodger trying to prove his manhood by egging on the militants in Washington to invade other countries without any pretense of real provocation. As a lifelong Republican, I have been embarrassed that he claimed to be a party member. I believe he is now mouthing off to divert attention from the misdeeds that could and should send him to prison if prosecuted.

    December 30, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  3. Chipster

    Yes, we should bring the criminals to justice. Stop treating them as if they are more important than the pathetic little religious fanatics that they are. They aren't magical. They have no super powers. They're simply criminals, thugs, murderers and should be treated as such. Do we have the courage to practice what we preach about justice? Or are we cowards who will surrender in fear to the terrorists? Bring them to justice and prove that our principles are real and more powerful than their cowardly conduct.

    December 30, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  4. Ex-NC-Pub

    Cheney is sick! Even, if I were to agree with him, this is no time for his toxic waste.

    December 30, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  5. hongli

    This is why Dick Cheney should be tried for war crimes and then live the rest of his life behind "BARS" in a PRISON.

    December 30, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  6. DEM in HI

    Best thing to do Cheney is to put him under oath about what he knew, and authorized while serving as the absolute worst VP ever. He trampled the constitution and should have been impeached for his lies and breaking the law. But, we have no law worth fighting for any more. Cheney wants to throw out the constitution and the Declaration of Independence. Why have any law in fact? Seems like people are so willing to give up what our forefathers fought and died for. We have sunk to new low as a country when we cannot realize that once you open Pandora's Box, you can never really go back. Best wishes and Happy New Years to all.

    December 30, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  7. RCasson

    There you go. SMACKDOWN baby.

    December 30, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  8. MsDp

    Kudos to the WhiteHouse. I was praying that you guys did not let that snake cheney (DARK HEART) get away with running his mouth and spreading lies. I'm thinking Cheney must be afraid of something, like maybe there is something that the whitehouse might uncover during the investigation???

    December 30, 2009 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  9. ross berg-buffalo ny

    As a lifelong Republican I'm ashamed of Dick Cheneys performance and interference. The WH is right that instead of condeming the nut case terrorist he's concentrating his anger on the President!!

    How wrong and misguided. If he keeps this up the Dems might actually gain seats next year against all historical norms!!

    Between Cheney, Limbaugh and Palin they seemed determined to drive the Republican partys number further off the cliff!!

    Hard to believe but true!!

    December 30, 2009 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  10. Danny

    After the mess Bush/Cheney left out country in it's amazing he has the gaul to open his mouth in public again. The man is a psychopath and should be confined to an asylum!

    December 30, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  11. IKHAN

    Do these people who got us into the worst disaster & blunder in the history of this country namely- Iraq, have any right to criticize the current administration or for that matter, any other administration.

    We are in this horrible messy world because of the arrogance & folly of previous administration & they should have the moral courage & Americanism to own it-period.

    December 30, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  12. goofy

    The truth hits home doesn't it Obama lovers!

    December 30, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  13. Inga

    'Bout time the WH punches back. The Cheney Doctrine got us into and exacerbated this mess. Time for the republican chickenhawks to stfu and let the adults do the job we the people elected them to do.

    December 30, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  14. nfldmojo

    I think that Cheney should shut up and keep a low profile. In my humble opinion. I think that the man is a war criminal. He had his chance to run for President. He didn't. 'Nuff said!

    December 30, 2009 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  15. Mike1952

    Role reversal. Dejavu. Same stuff when Bush was in office but reversed. They're all crooks regardless of party. They all need to go and we need term limits badly.

    December 30, 2009 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  16. Jim in Phoenix

    At first I was alarmed that maybe Obama's administration was not doing a good job protecting us from terrorists, but after hearing Dick "The Dick" Cheney's rant I feel much more comfortable. If The Dick thinks you are doing a bad job, you must be doing something right.

    December 30, 2009 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  17. db

    Stop whining, Mr. Obama, and keep this nation safe!

    December 30, 2009 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  18. Arizona Thoughts

    Will Cheney ever learn to sit in Wyoming and keep his ego quiet? He had 8 years to muck stuff up and cause corruption a) Karl Rove took the hit for his revealing a CIA operative b) his company made enough money off the American people. So Mr. Cheney – sit there in Wyoming in your hot tub and let the steam heal your ego. In other words – shaddddddup.

    December 30, 2009 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  19. zazu

    Conservatives have told us (And I believe) that our rights are divinely bestowed as the founders documents assert, but then they turn around and tell us that it ought to be reserved for Americans only. Which one is it? Is it only Divinely bestowed? In which case it has to apply to all God's children or is it only for Americans? In which case, the rest of humanity is not really created or cared for by God. But hey, since when does logic, truth and facts bother conservatives. Isn't that what makes you one!

    December 30, 2009 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  20. J

    Hey Dick
    If I recall the administration that was in power during 9/11 and the shoe bomber was.......yours.

    Stop being a hypocrite

    December 30, 2009 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  21. Concerned

    Maybe if this is the way Mr. Prez responded a year ago he would be a little more credible!

    December 30, 2009 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  22. dick delson

    why does anyone pay attention to anything Chaney says? he should be brought up on conspiracy changes and if found guilty, JAILED.

    December 30, 2009 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  23. Bob in Pa

    Why does Obama feel like he has to respond to every critisism ? This guy is so way in over his head !

    December 30, 2009 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  24. LacrosseMom

    GOOD! Who is Dick any way? Here is a man whose Regime tortured, threw the U.S. Constitution under-the-bus so they could do as they pleased; LIED to Americans about Iraq so he could get his greedy hands on Iraqi oil and....... he has the nerve to criticize President Obama!

    So torture, lies, greed, spying on U.S. citizens is okay?

    DICK........ September 11th happened on YOUR WATCH!

    December 30, 2009 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  25. rick Atlanta

    Its better than pretending there is WMD and invading the WRONG country... I place 3000+ dead americans on bush and cheneys shoulders for since-less american deaths!!!

    December 30, 2009 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
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