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October 29, 2004
Ashcroft: FBI Halliburton Probe Just 'Halloween Prank'
by Scott Ott

(2004-10-29) -- Attorney General John Ashcroft told a news conference this morning that the widening of the FBI investigation into whether the Pentagon improperly awarded no-bid contracts to Halliburton was "simply a Halloween prank."

"I called President Bush this morning and yelled, "Psyche! Gotcha!'," said a smiling Mr. Ashcroft. "We both thought it was so outlandish that no one would fall for it, but apparently some reporters have no sense of humor."

Mr. Ashcroft said he thought it would be "patently absurd" to suggest that the president's most conservative political appointee would allow one of his departments to broaden its probe of the vice president's former company just days before the election?

"We all had a big laugh writing up the phoney news release," said Mr. Ashcroft. "The funniest part is the idea that Cheney would let this happen during his de facto presidency. Imagine!"

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