Meredith Vieira “Peeved” at Bush, Calls America a “Gas Guzzling Nation”

Meredith Vieira just can’t help herself. The View co-host will soon be taking over for Katie Couric on the Today show. One would think that she would try and reign in her bias. Apparently not, as she opened the April 26 edition of The View with another attack on President Bush:

Vieira: "...I’m a little peeved when I hear the President say there’s not much we can do about this, folks. According to the President, the American people have got to understand that what happens elsewhere in the world affects the price of gasoline that you pay here, but where is his responsibility in all this? Five and a half years and we’re dealing with these gas prices? It’s ridiculous."

Video clip (37 seconds): Real (1.1 MB) or Windows Media (1.3 MB), plus MP3 audio (220 KB)

The segment, which aired at 11:01AM EDT, also saw the future NBC star blame the high price of gas on the war in Iraq, oil companies and the citizens of the United States:

Vieira: "Part of the reason that oil prices have gone up is because we went into Iraq. So you gotta deal with that as well."

Vieira’s thoughts on the Iraq war are well known. As Brent Baker previously reported, in 2004 she famously said this about the conflict: "Everything’s been built on lies. Everything! I mean the entire pretext for war."

Later, Ms. Vieira found a new target. Co-host Star Jones brought up Exxon Mobil chairman Lee Raymond and his nearly $400 million dollar retirement package. Vieira responded with the rather obvious statement about the oil industry: "All of the companies have made a lot of money too." I guess that’s a bad thing. Later she indicated that Americans themselves deserve some criticism:

Vieira: "And we are a gas guzzling nation as well. So do any of us have hybrid cars? I mean, I don’t."

Vieira’s honesty is encouraging, but it doesn’t exactly help her argument. Earlier in the segment, she noted that she recently paid over $60 to fill up her minivan. That doesn’t sound like a particularly fuel efficient vehicle. The other View hosts, who are often overshadowed by their NBC bound colleague, also made some rather odd comments. Co-host Joy Behar speculated ominously about who might be responsible for the high prices:

Behar: "You know, it’s funny because when Clinton was- I checked with research and when Clinton left it was $25 a barrel and now it’s $73.03. Today. A barrel. So somebody made money in all of those years. I mean, I don’t know who it was. It wasn’t us."

Jones: "Somebody got paid. Somebody got paid. That’s called evidence, girl!"

Well, there you go. Reading between the lines, apparently Dick Cheney is manipulating the price of oil to help his buddies. Behar continued with this theme by noting the Vice President’s disturbing past:

Behar: "Well, you know, in today’s paper there was another thing that I saw that was interesting. It says that the U.S. could have begun developing alternative fuels 30 years ago if Dick Cheney hadn’t helped scuttle an ambitious plan in the Ford administration. Now, that was 30 years ago. Since that time Clinton has been in office, so he’s to blame also."

So apparently Cheney is (mostly) responsible for stopping the emergence of alternative sources of energy? An interesting statement, because President Carter focused heavily on the subject and the program still didn’t get very far.

Perhaps Meredith Vieira was channeling her inner Carter when she closed the segment with this piece of introspection:

Vieira: "Maybe I should just get a bike. That makes more sense. Get a bike."

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