02/16/2006 06:28 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Ari's Confusion of the Day: With Friends Like These...

I'm confused. How does Dick Cheney's assertion that everything he did after the shooting was driven by concern for his friend jibe with his head-scratching behavior?

Cheney says his first reaction after shooting Harry Whittington wasn't to call the press. "My first reaction," he told Brit Hume, "is: My friend, Harry, has been shot and we've got to take care of him."

Fine, nothing wrong with that. But why, just a few hours after shooting his friend in the face, was Cheney busy eating dinner with his other friends back at the ranch while Whittington was lying in a hospital bed? I would think a true compassionate conservative would have spent Saturday night eating dinner out of a hospital vending machine.

Given your friendship with Harry, Mr. Vice President, I also find it confusing that you chose to let Scott McClellan and Katharine Armstrong get the word out instead of doing it yourself. I find it even more confusing that you sat silently for four long days while Armstrong and your other designated mouthpieces implied the accident was your friend's fault -- until that unfriendly strategy backfired and you had to take "responsibility" on Fox.

Whittington's daughter, Sally, says her father does not remember much about getting shot, nor was he involved in how or if the information about the shooting was released: "He didn't know at the time if he was going to the hospital or the mortuary."

Tell me, Mr. Vice President, what's your excuse?