April 2nd, 2008
03:40 PM ET
7 years ago

McCain says 20 names on the VP list, takes dig at Quayle


Watch McCain's comments on his VP process.

(CNN) - John McCain said Wednesday he's compiled his initial list of potential running mates.

The presumptive Republican nominee said on his campaign bus that the list has approximately 20 names on it, but said it will take "weeks if not months" to narrow the list down.

"It's the same process that has been used by Democrats and Republicans," the Arizona senator said. "It's not an unusual thing. You put the list together and then you just could do a cursory kind of a look that I guess you could do on Google."

McCain also said he hopes to name his running mate before the party's convention in September, as has been the practice in several recent presidential elections.

"I'd love to do it earlier in the run than later, but it depends on the process," he said. "We just really haven't gotten far enough along in the whole thing to really be able to even predict what we're doing, seriously."

In 2004, John Kerry announced his selection of John Edwards in early July - more than six weeks before the Democratic convention.

But McCain said he did not want to rush the process, hoping to avoid what he said were mistakes past nominees had made in choosing a vice presidential candidate. Specifically, McCain singled out the first President Bush's selection of then-Sen. Dan Quayle who had "not been briefed and prepared for some of the questions."

"I'm a great friend of Dan Quayle's and I think he was a fine senator," McCain also said. "I just think that it was you know, a lot of people in retrospect would have thought maybe the process should have been...I just think you have to have a measured process, make sure that you have taken every, all the factors into consideration and then decide."

Related: McCain mulls list of potential running mates

- CNN's Dana Bash and Alexander Mooney contributed to this report

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (165 Responses)
  1. sozzi

    Is Mickey Mouse included..

    April 2, 2008 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  2. 20 Good Men?

    Wow! I had no idea there were that many candidates under review. It would seem to me that McCain can unify the Republicans to some degree if he chooses Mitt Romney as his running mate. Of course, since Mr. Romney is a Mormon, this will not play well with the religious snake dancer contingent of the party, but you can't please everyone. Go to the core of the party, John. They are your base. The religious zealots have had their 8 years, and it has done nothing of value for our country. Send them back to the hills of Appalachia where they belong. Let's get more centrist. You'll have a much better chance of getting things done if you don't pay attention to the fringe elements at either end of the political spectrum.

    April 2, 2008 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  3. Grif

    Whatever / Wherever! John you need to pick a 'Woman' as No-1 or No-2... Preferably Number One... You need the 'Women' on you're Ticket.. Magnetism Magic...

    April 2, 2008 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  4. Steve


    April 2, 2008 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  5. Marie

    I think Mike Huckabee certainly earned the right to be McCains' first choice for a running mate. A lot of people showed that they liked him. Or has McCain and Romney had this cooked up since Romney dropped out?

    April 2, 2008 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  6. steven

    i figure since mccain and every other republican wants to pattern themselves after ronald [ i'll get our peoples self-esteem back ] reagan.his pick for V.P. WILL be in the nature of a SOUTHERN species. or he might go for a calif politican to try and get them electoral votes, its all a chess game its a good start mccain ronald reagan set foot in mississippi to let his people know i'll set you free now mccain has followed in the same steps you go figure.

    April 2, 2008 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  7. EAM

    "McCain/Powell 2008"

    April 2, 2008 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  8. honkey white guy from cali

    he should not even bother making a list for the VP slot he is not going to beat Obama in November!

    Obama 08 Yes We Can!!!

    April 2, 2008 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  9. Jessica, MI

    I love how he threw "Google" in there just to try and show that he's not so old that he doesn't know what the internet is

    April 2, 2008 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  10. Ian

    Obviously you want someone who's been briefed on the most serious of issues. Otherwise you could get someone looking foolish telling people multiple times that Iran is training Al-Qaeda.

    April 2, 2008 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  11. Kap, Chicago, IL

    This would be a perfect opportunity for the Senator to reach across the aisle. Bill Clinton would certainly be most sensitive to the appropriate resume. He couldn't pull a Cheney and propose himself, but it's looking as though Hillary might be available. The dream ticket!

    April 2, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  12. Maggy

    Is McCain actually thinking about Danny Boy? Anybody but Dan and anybody but McCain!

    April 2, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  13. Anyone but Obamination

    The most important decision of his career and the future of this country. He will win in November if Obama is the nominee, and that person will be very important due do McCains age and health issues.

    April 2, 2008 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  14. Repugant Party Lacky

    Let's see.....
    1. Jeb Bush
    2. Laura Bush
    3. Neil Bush
    4. George H.W. Bush
    5. Newt Gingrich
    6. Larry Sanders
    7. Mark Foley
    8. Mother Bush
    9. David Vitters
    10. Trent Lott

    April 2, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  15. Patrick

    I hope he picks a moderate democrat like Liebermen to unite the country.

    April 2, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  16. Mimi in Chicago

    can McCain put one clear concise sentence together?

    April 2, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  17. dick williams

    My belief is that McCain's first choice would be Sen Lieberman from CT. We'd have two moderate, experienced and intelligent people.However, this is probably not going to happen. Strategy regrding geography, age and conservatism will tgake precedence.
    I just hope it's someone who take over if necessary.

    April 2, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  18. Michael

    Do ever notice when McCain speaks he never really talk about issues? Who cares who his running mate is. Obama is beating him now, and thats after Fox news runs the Wright story 24/7. Even Hillary is upset that her wright bashing isn't working.

    April 2, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  19. Gail

    He better get someone who can remember stuff.

    April 2, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  20. jd


    April 2, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    Well, who are the possible VP candidates?

    April 2, 2008 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  22. Bit, Alabama

    Well Senator-

    Your best bet will be to choose Mitt Romney as your veep being that you don't know anything about economics.

    April 2, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  23. Steve

    A McCain Lieberman ticket would nail it I think.

    April 2, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  24. BruntLIVE

    Dear GOP/RNC/Talk Radio:

    You will not SNEAK a Reagan/Bush retread VP by us, so while the Dems battle it out you better check the "secret lives" of these VP, odds are some are gay. America will not tolerate another Reagan II presidency where Reagan was asleep and there for VISUAL only while the hard right and Cheney crowd ran the show. It will not happen McCain, stop delaying you are not fooling us again.

    April 2, 2008 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  25. Janice

    Actually he has 100 names on the list but he can only remember 20 of them.

    April 2, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
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