President Bush’s approval ratings are near record lows, as are Vice President Dick Cheney’s following a hunting accident that not only renewed charges of White House secrecy but also made him a ripe target for latenight comics. So what are conservative talk and cable hosts to do? Hey, how ’bout them Oscars? Talk hosts always tackle a wide variety of subjects, but with the Bush team increasingly looking like the gang that couldn’t shoot straight — literally, in Cheney’s case — there’s a certain value for right-leaning talent in changing the subject. Recent Republican travails would seem to weigh heavily on the high-profile talk hosts at Fox News Channel, which, even in its news coverage, occasionally blunts rough edges when covering the current White House. Although Fox rejects the conservative label, when other nets last week pounced on newly released video showing Bush being warned of possible disaster in New Orleans before Hurricane Katrina, the channel downplayed the most damaging video snippet along with Bush’s statement days after the storm that “I don’t think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees.” At the same time, a few conservative hosts are joining in the chorus of Bush […]

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