Just a few days ago, we read that Whittington was "alert and doing fine." He was only hit with a friendly shotgun blast after all. Now we read this:
The 78-year-old lawyer who was shot by Vice President Dick Cheney in a hunting accident has some birdshot in or touching his heart and he had "a silent heart attack" Tuesday morning, hospital officials said. The victim, Harry Whittington, was immediately moved back to the intensive care unit for further treatment, said Peter Banko, the administrator at Christus Spohn Hospital Corpus Christi-Memorial in Texas. Banko said doctors conducting a regular checkup on Whittington Tuesday morning discovered an irregularity in the heartbeat caused by a pellet, and they performed a cardiac catheterization around 10 a.m. EST. Whittington was in stable condition after treatment and expressed a desire to leave the hospital, but Banko said they would probably keep him for another week to make sure that more birdshot does not move to other vital organs.
In spite of this downturn, we shouldn't be too concerned. After all, Cheney says that he stands "ready to assist." I'm sure Mr. Whittington was happy to hear that! If things take another turn for the worse, I'm sure Cheney can pull some strings and get Halliburton to come check things out; maybe he can have them take a no-bid contract for the job and then they can get together in a Texas hotel to discuss the issue over single-malt Scotch and wine-cooked pheasant.