Saturday, March 25, 2006

Cheney's Needs on the Road: What, No NPR?

The New York Times
Cheney's Needs on the Road: What, No NPR?

WASHINGTON, March 23 — Vice President Dick Cheney may be a rock star only to his most ardent Republican supporters, but he has on-the-road demands just like the Rolling Stones. Still, Mr. Cheney appears easier to please than Mick Jagger or Keith Richards.

At least that was the evidence from "Vice Presidential Downtime Requirements," the heading of a document posted Thursday on the Smoking Gun Web site and confirmed as authentic by Mr. Cheney's office.

The document listed 13 requirements. Among them were these: All televisions sets in Mr. Cheney's hotel suite should be tuned to Fox News, all lights should be on, and the thermostat set at 68 degrees. Mr. Cheney should have a queen- or king-size bed, a desk with a chair, a private bathroom, a container for ice, a microwave oven and a coffee pot, with decaf brewed before arrival.

The vice president should also have four cans of caffeine-free Diet Sprite and four to six bottles of water. He must have the hotel restaurant menu, with a copy faxed ahead to his advance office. If his wife is with him, she should have two bottles of sparkling water, either Calistoga or Perrier.

For his reading material, Mr. Cheney should have The New York Times, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal and the local newspaper.

"The vice president maintains an active schedule, which requires regular travel throughout the United States and at times involves a hotel stay," said Jenny Mayfield, a spokeswoman for Mr. Cheney. "Our advance office provides guidelines for our volunteers in the field. This is just a routine little check list."

The downtime requirements said nothing about exercise equipment, but aides to Mr. Cheney have been spotted on his travels loading and unloading a stationary bicycle from Air Force Two.