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By LP Hastings
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File photoCAMP DAVID, Md.—
"The president made a very good case, a very strong case for a just war in Iraq," Fleischer told reporters just minutes after Jesus stormed out of the president's office looking defiant but visibly shaken. "But in the end, the two sides were just too far apart."
Fleischer added that negotiations were always made in good faith. "The president still has tremendous respect for Christ," he said.
Relations between Jesus and Bush had always been strong but became strained in recent months over Bush's desire to invade Iraq and topple Saddam Hussein.
Jesus was unavailable for comment, but his spokesman Pope John Paul II lashed out at the president.
"Bush is preparing for a war that will kill hundreds of thousands of people," the 82-old pontiff explained. "This is a war that is in no way 'just.' President Bush simply didn't listen to Christ, so Christ walked out."
The pope added that Bush's habit of placing both his hands over his ears and jumping up and down when Jesus was trying to speak "was not constructive."
During the Dec. 13, 1999, Iowa Presidential Debate, Bush said he chose Jesus as his favorite "philosopher-thinker" because "he changed my heart." When asked to elaborate, Bush hesitated.
"Well, if they don't know, it's going to be hard to explain," he said. "When you turn your heart and your life over to Christ, when you accept Christ as a savior, it changes your heart and changes your life."
In his search for a new favorite philosopher, Bush has narrowed his choices to five, Fleischer said: Utah Jazz power forward Karl "Mailman" Malone, actor Vin Diesel, former XFL commissioner Vince McMahon, British historian Paul Johnson and Pootie Tang.Marathon 40-hour talks aimed at repairing the breach between the Son of God and the Son of Bush over Iraq war plans ended with no accord, aides to both said Tuesday. Presidential spokesman Ari Fleischer said Bush now has no choice but to find a new favorite philosopher.