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Dole Gets a Laugh at Bush's Expense

December 19, 1987|From a Times Staff Writer

WASHINGTON — Senate Minority Leader Bob Dole (R-Kan.) visited the White House on Friday for the second day in a row, prompting a reporter, Phil Jones of CBS News, to ask him at a news conference what Vice President George Bush, a competitor for the GOP presidential nomination, thought about this turn of events.

Without a pause, Dole quipped: "He wasn't there today. It was a leadership meeting." With that, he beat a hasty exit.

Moments later, before the laughter among reporters had vanished, he sent his press secretary, Walt Riker, back into the room to shout over the din: "Thanks, Phil!"

Dole later explained: "(If) they throw you a little softball, you might as well hit it out of the park."

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