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Cheney Discusses Senate Switch

May 25, 2001

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Vice President Dick Cheney was asked about prospects for the White House energy plan in the Senate ``now that they just shuffled the deck.″

He replied with a quip _ ``Shuffled the deck or stacked it?″ _ and then sought to minimize the impact of Vermont Sen. James Jeffords’ shift that will put Democrats in control.

``The basic makeup of the Senate doesn’t change,″ Cheney said Friday. ``The votes are the same ... the same 100 senators there tomorrow that were there yesterday.″

Noting that a dozen Democrats joined Republicans to support the tax bill, Cheney said, ``There’s no reason why it has to be a blatantly partisan fight.″

But, he finally conceded, ``it would be easier if my friend Trent Lott (the Mississippi Republican) were the majority leader.″

``But that’s the breaks.″

Cheney commented in response to questions at a U.S. Chamber of Commerce energy conference.

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