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News :: Politics
That Bush Earpiece and Wire: The Bush Campaign Explanations Make it Seem Even More Likely
12 Oct 2004
After first trying to say the photos must have been doctored, the Bush administration is now trying to say that the peculiar bulge in his jacket was just an odd wrinkle.
As is often the case with these kinds of stories, the response to a perceived or alleged scandal can be worse or more revealing than the actual scandal, and so it may be with the matter of the Bush earpiece.

Was Bush wired during the debates?

The question has to be open and unproven either way. Clearly there was an object of some sort under his jacket the first night, and in the second debate, his jacket was very ill-fitting and peculiar. There was an odd bulge in the middle even higher up than in the first debate, but instead of being clearly rectangular in shape, it was broader. In fact, the whole upper part of the back of that second suit jacket seemed oddly padded, as if Bush had gone on a heavy steroids program during the intervening week.

What really raises questions, though, is the lame response from the Bush campaign. After completely stiffing me when I inquired about the bulge in the jacket during debate number one, the campaign was hit by queries from the New York Times and Washington Post, both of which which took the Oct. 8 Salon article seriously. Unable to blow off these two mainstream publications, the Bush flak squad, initially attempted to put off the questions by suggesting that the photo in Salon and those going around on Internet sites were doctored, and by comparing those who were making the suggestion to Kennedy assassination conspiracy theorists.

When it was pointed out that the Salon site had used a photo taken directly from a vidio feed of the debate, and that the peculiar bulge in Bush’s jacket was quite visible at various points in the video tapes of the event (check out the one available on C-Span's website, for example), the Bush campaign, which said the president was not wearing a bullet- proof vest, fell back to excuse number two: it was an unusual wrinkle.

Unusual indeed! Knight-Ridder sent a reporter to the presidential tailor, George de Paris, who dutifully said the bulge could have been a "pucker". But a very odd pucker this would be, with a rectangular top, clearly delineated. Moreover, we’re talking about probably the most artfully and carefully tailored suit in America.

The London Times, a Rupert Murdoch-owned publication, weighed in a day later with an interview with William Hunt, a prominent London Savile Row tailor known for his $3000 suits. His take: "Without a shadow of a doubt, I would say that he had some kind of wire running up his back underneath his clothing. Not even the seems on a cheap suit would look like that. It must have been some kind of transmitter."

The lame excuses from the Bush camp make it seem all the more likely that the president is getting help in the debates telegraphed through a hidden earpiece.

Interestingly, a series of pictures of Bush at his ranch during August 2002 shows him with the exact same type of bulge from some device under his T-shirt, while driving a pickup truck. Available on the official White House website on Monday, this picture also showed Bush with a clearly visible earpiece connected by a clearly visible wire that ran down through the neck of the T-shirt to whatever was on his back. (By Tuesday, the pictures had been removed from the White House site.)

A device that would perfectly match the "pucker" on his jacket, the IK-82 induction communication device manufactured by the German firm, Resistance Technology Gmbh, is designed to fit on the back and then broadcasts wirelessly to an earpiece that fits invisibly down in the wearer's ear canal, but it includes a feature to allow it to be connected to an ordinary wire-linked earpiece. See:

My guess is that Bush was wired for both debates, and that he'll be wired on Wednesday for the last debate.

For the rest of this column, please go (at no charge) to This Can't Be Happening! .
See also:

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