McLEAN, Va. — Former Vice President Dick Cheney, who had a heart transplant after leaving the White House, says he is grateful to be alive, as “everyday is a day I never expected to see.”
“I was in a near death condition in the summer of 2010 — 17 months after I left the White House,” Cheney said in a wide-ranging video interview with The Daily Caller this week at his home in Virginia. “I got a new heart. And everyday I wake up with a smile on my face, grateful for a donor, and medical technology, that made it possible for me to have an extension on life.”
Cheney, who called the heart transplant a “whole new lease on life,” said his “health is excellent” now.
“I am very very grateful,” he added.
Cheney, who splits his time between Wyoming and Washington D.C., is doing interviews to promote the Alliance for a Strong America, the new group he and his daughter, Liz, are forming to “advocate for a restoration of American strength and power.”
As portions of Iraq are overtaken by the terrorists with the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), Cheney has been a vocal critic of the Obama administration for withdrawing all of America’s troops from the country and not leaving any remaining forces.
Asked if he has spoken to President George W. Bush about the recent developments in Iraq, Cheney wouldn’t divulge how the former president, who doesn’t typically speak out on current events, feels.
“He’s got feelings about it, obviously,” Cheney said. “But those are private conversations. And he generally has pursued a policy of not criticizing his successor. That’s his choice.”
“I face no such limits,” Cheney continued. “So I’m perfectly prepared to speak out. And the organization Liz and I have set up and will be very active in is specifically designed to be able to get those issues front and center before the American people, and to help organize efforts to guarantee that the policy weaknesses of the Obama administration don’t continue.”
Cheney said he and his wife had dinner with Bush about a month ago.
WATCH CHENEY TALK ABOUT FORMER PRESIDENT BUSH:
See the previous segments of TheDC’s interview with Cheney below:
- Cheney On Iraq: ‘We Left It In Good Shape’ For The Obama Administration
- Cheney Pours Cold Water On Rand Paul 2016: ‘Isolationism Doesn’t Work’
- Cheney On Mexico Jailing Marine: ‘It’s Fundamentally An Unfriendly Act’
- Cheney Calls Benghazi A ‘Terrible Embarrassment’ For Hillary
Videography by Grae Stafford. Katie Frates contributed photography, and Jane Bartlett Pappas contributed to this report.