Now Pulseless, Dick Cheney Rejoins the Living
Heart pump allows him to give speeches, even hunt
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 5, 2011 10:58 AM CST
Updated Jan 8, 2011 7:30 PM CST
Former Vice President Dick Cheney waves during the groundbreaking ceremony for the President George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2010.   (AP Photo/LM Otero)

(Newser) – Dick Cheney no longer has a pulse. But he is still alive, thanks to the mechanical heart pump he received in July. The pump, reports the New York Times, both saved his life and allowed him to start living it again. Case in point: Last month, after being out of the political spotlight for months, Cheney headlined a fundraiser for Maria Cino, a candidate to replace Michael Steele as head of the RNC, and attended several Washington holiday parties.

Cheney will soon need to decide whether to pursue a full heart transplant before he's too old, or stick with the pump and its unproven future. But for now doctors say he’s free to shop, drive, or even play golf—but, New York magazine notes, he may not be able to shower…A noticeably thinner Cheney seems to like the pump, showing it off to fellow partygoers. It helps to push blood through his arteries continuously, rather than on a beat (hence the lack of a pulse), and it has allowed Cheney even to resume hunting. He does not plan, however, to return to combating President Obama, although he will still give speeches. His family and friends say he’d rather spend time on his memoirs and cooking.