In the week of long pool reports, the first dogs are not eating anti-freeze (we can all sleep better at night now); poolers narrowly escape frost bite, no tears for Anna Nicole and President Bush excels at math.
“Both Barney and Miss Beazley frolicked on the South Tundra as a 15-piece black motorcade assembled for the president’s fast ride to the Department of Homeland Security. This was an awfully cold and windy but also wonderfully clear and cloudless day, the sun warming the wintry gray-green turf of a lawn ringed with a frosting of snow from Tuesday evening’s dusting. The water in a steel dog bowl outside was iceless, suggesting that either they refill the bowl frequently or they’re feeding the first pooches antifreeze — I’m going with the frequent-refill theory.” — Mark Silva, Chicago Tribune
“No mention of the sad Anna Nicole Smith death story unfolding as we had waited here. No signs of TVs on inside the briefing room. A WH press aide who had been inside the briefing room said they had not discussed Smith’s passing.” — Silva
“An OTR at Blair House, with POTUS attending good-bye reception for Chief of Protocol Donald Burnham Ensenat. The president and first lady walked across Pennsylvania Avenue, arriving at 5:55 p.m., with the president wearing a tan cowboy hat. Poolers still had most of our fingers and toes when POTUS reemerged almost precisely an hour later, and walked back to the White House with the first lady and Senator Judd Gregg, R-N.H. And with that, we have a chilly lid.” — Rick Klein, Boston Globe
“The president then asked what the federal government can do. Cipolla: ‘I want to thank Mrs. Bush.’ That drew a presidential smirk, and laughter from all in the room. When one participant mentioned a $10 million private commitment that has already been secured, Bush quickly pointed out: ‘You’re $990 million short.’ Kempthorne chimed in: ‘You can all see that cabinet meetings are lively.’” — Klein
“As we left, POTUS recognized the presence of NBC’s David Gregory, the peacock network’s White House correspondent/substitute Today show host. The dialogue, as best I can tell from somewhat muffled recording. POTUS: ‘Where you been?’ MR. GREGORY: ‘I’m here.’ POTUS: ‘You’re a big shot. You’re trying to get in the big time. You’re leaving us. Leave no administration behind. Let us know when you get to be like the ‘Today’ show thing and all that, that way we can say we knew you when, we knew him when.’” — Ken Herman, Cox Newspapers
“Note: For Any Washingtonian that may read this pool report — If you’re driving on, say, the Baltimore-Washington Parkway or, maybe, I-395 on a Sunday, about 11 a.m., and 12 black SUVs and vans with tinted windows and some bikes strapped on back try to merge into traffic, you, uh, oughta go ahead and let ‘em in (cuz? one of those SUV’s holds a swarm of men with a whole buncha big guns). Just FYI.” — Joseph Curl, Washington Times