Vice President Dick Cheney, having briefly assumed President Bush’s duties while the president underwent a routine colon procedure on Saturday [June 21], told reporters the next day that he “enjoyed the downtime immensely.”

The 2 hours and 15 minutes spent doing Bush’s job were “incredibly relaxing,” Cheney said, adding that they were a welcome relief from his exacting vice presidential schedule.

Invoking the 25th Amendment to the Constitution that morning, Bush transferred to Cheney all of his presidential responsibilities, which meant that Cheney spent the day jogging, going to the gym and hitting a ball for Bush’s dog to retrieve.

In addition, Cheney called the nations of East Timor and Luxembourg “evil,” stumbling briefly over the pronunciation of Luxembourg.

Finally, as Bush’s colon procedure was winding down, Cheney made some remarks about the Japanese economy, mistakenly using the word devaluation instead of deflation, sending the Nikkei stock market into a tailspin.

All in all, Cheney said he emerged from his brief tenure as president rested and refreshed, ready to plunge back into his demanding vice presidential workload.

As for the president, Bush’s doctors pronounced his procedure a success but said that they were having difficulty determining whether or not the president’s anesthesia had fully worn off. Bush’s doctors indicated that when they asked the president the standard post-operative questions — such as, “What is the capital of the United States?” — Bush got only two out of five correct.

“Before the operation, he got three out of five right,” one doctor said.

Elsewhere, a Mexican candy has been recalled after being found to contain traces of lead, in a sign of Mexico’s ongoing effort to compete with China’s candy industry.

Award-winning humorist, television personality and film actor Andy Borowitz is author of “The Republican Playbook.”

© 2007 Creators Syndicate Inc.

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