Dick Cheney Hospitalized with Chest Pains

July 7, 2008 - 7:27 PM

(CNSNews.com) - George W. Bush assured reporters Wednesday that running mate Dick Cheney sounded "strong" and "vibrant" during an early morning telephone call that took place after he learned Cheney was hospitalized early in the morning.

Cheney, who has a history of heart problems, went to a Washington D.C. hospital Wednesday morning, complaining of chest and shoulder pains, but tests so far show no abnormalities, the Bush campaign said.

"Secretary Cheney will make a great Vice President," Bush said. "America is getting to see how steady and strong he is."

Bush spokeswoman Karen Hughes said Cheney went to George Washington Hospital and underwent tests as a precautionary measure because of his past heart conditions. Another Bush spokesman said she would characterize Cheney's complaint more as "discomfort" than pain.

Hughes said Cheney's electrocardiogram showed no change and blood tests indicated his cardiac enzymes were normal. The hospital is expected to hold a news conference sometime Wednesday morning, to answer more questions about Cheney's condition.

According to Hughes, Cheney went to the hospital at 6:08 a.m. EST. Bush campaign chairman Don Evans spoke to Cheney by telephone this morning and described him as "calm and comfortable."

The Gore campaign released a statement earlier saying it was "concerned and saddened" by the news, but encouraged by reports of the good test results.

Cheney, 59, has had three heart attacks over the years, and he's also had quadruple bypass surgery. He quit smoking, exercises regularly and takes medicine to control his cholesterol level, and he recently was quoted as saying he leads a "vigorous lifestyle."

He was pronounced fit to serve as Bush's running mate earlier this year.

Cheney is in the Washington area to be with family for the Thanksgiving holiday.