August 19th, 2008
03:15 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain planning VP surprise?

Ridge and Lieberman campaigned for McCain in Pennsylvania last week.
Ridge and Lieberman campaigned for McCain in Pennsylvania last week.

(CNN) – Republican sources tell CNN that John McCain campaign manager Rick Davis and senior advisor Charlie Black have been calling activists to sound out the pros and cons of several possible running mates – including former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge, a choice that could spark major discontent from the conservative base.

Several campaign officials say they do not believe a final decision has been made – though two sources say McCain may have already decided, and told only Davis. One party insider tells CNN that Davis has called several state party chairs indicating Ridge will be the Republican vice presidential pick this cycle – although it is possible that Christian conservatives may be playing up the former governor’s chances in an effort to raise alarm and prematurely kill off his candidacy.

Several conservative activists say they know McCain’s campaign manager has been warned of possible dire consequences for the Arizona senator’s presidential bid at the convention and beyond if he picks a candidate who supports abortion rights.

"If he picks Ridge, the convention blows up, you will have a base completely demoralized,” said one activist. “And it will be viewed that he is ceding the future of the GOP to a liberal Republican. It would be a disaster."

But the same activist also says McCain is unlikely to make that move, pointing to comments by the presumptive Republican nominee that he would most likely have an anti-abortion running mate, and remarks this weekend that he would have a "pro-life" presidency.


Filed under: Joe Lieberman • John McCain • Tom Ridge
soundoff (267 Responses)
  1. kisha

    Yawn...

    Who cares! Excitement in the McCain campaign is like Bingo Night at the old folks’ home.

    August 19, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  2. J Houston, TX

    Helene, typical Democrat. If a man makes his own way and votes what he thinks is right, he's a traitor. It'd be much better of Lieberman would just stick to party line and not think for himself wouldn't it. That's what Democrats think America's biggest problem is...to many people thinking for themselves and trying to be independent. Don't they know what the government is here for?

    August 19, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  3. gp

    CNN and Mc Same campain working their hardest to keep us interested for that campain that is so boring and non atractive. They are trying to heeat up by throwing sugesstions in atempt to evoce finaly any emotional response from votrers!!!!!! Mc Same can't be exciting since he doesn't have anything to offer – we have heard storys about surge and prison ...and that is about it ..I am so sory for all of you trying to do imposible whae candidate himself doesn't give any material to be excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 19, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  4. McCain:SmallWeakCowardlyMan OffersMoreOfTheSame TearsOthersDownToBuildHimselfUp

    A "pro-life" presidency that only "respects" life at a scientifically, genetically and morally ambiguous phase but has no qualms about disrepecting and sacrificing it at any other time.

    August 19, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  5. John

    Does Ridge have connections to the Arizona Mafia? if not he will not even have a shot at the VP slot. McCain is already bought and paid for by the Arizona mob.

    August 19, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  6. gm

    i JUST WISH PEOPLE COULD MAKE THEIR COMMENTS WITHOUT BEING SO NASTY. WHAT GOOD DOES IT DO TO CALL PEOPLE NAMES AND BE SO NEGATIVE? IF YOU CAN'T KEEP YOUR COMMENTS WITHOUT BEING NASTY, THEN THEY SHOULD BE KEPT TO YOURSELF. (i AM A OBAMA SUPPOTER)

    August 19, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  7. McCain's illegitimate child

    Yes, must have a pro-life running mate. Abortion is an abomination and terrible sin. (Adultery's okay though. Just ask Cindy).

    August 19, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  8. ujw, ny

    McCain could probably waterboard Ridge into changing his position on abortion, then the GOP base could be happy on both counts!

    August 19, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  9. dittohead with forty names

    Joe Berman was his name till his mama told him how to win elections,LIEberman.

    August 19, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  10. Jozee

    No one in the Republican party has any real credibility at this point. They run their politics the way they have run the country-–dirty and without moral responsibility.

    I hope the choice is Ridge so that McCain can be tied even more closely to the Bush administration and their failed policies.

    GO BOB BARR!

    August 19, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  11. offwallst

    Mr.McCain

    the momemtum is now on your side.......blue states are now turning to a toss-up......you mopped up the floor with obama......the seeds have been planted for a moderate landslide......dont mess up this decision...the presidency is yours to lose....

    the true obama is being broadcast all over conservative talk radio and tv....

    August 19, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  12. Irony Defined

    McCain will have a "pro-life" presidency?

    Except for the wars, of course.

    August 19, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  13. shamous mc

    Bush has his Cheney and McCain will have his Lieberman.

    August 19, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  14. sam

    Whomever he picks, It 's just the same old bunch of Liars!

    August 19, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  15. mel

    Will not be a good choice,their both are not good for this
    country.

    August 19, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  16. Alison, FL

    YYYYYYYAAAAAAAAWWWWWNNNNNN......ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

    August 19, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  17. Ken in Dallas

    There's nothing premature about killing off McCain's candidacy. The man makes a fool of himself, and of US, on a daily basis.

    August 19, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  18. cherrystrawberry

    McFrankenstein's surprise wil be that he remembers the name of his vp when he or she is announced.

    August 19, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  19. Nelson Colorado Springs Co

    Sen McCain please pick Joe Lieberman for VP. Go OBAMA

    August 19, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  20. RC

    Just a couple of racists.

    NEXT

    August 19, 2008 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  21. Evan from CT

    I can't believe Lieberman. I didn't believe his talk during the senate race against Ned Lamont, and I can't believe us Nutmeggers were stupid enough to put him back in the Senate. He doesn't deserve it. He certainly doesn't represent our beliefs if he's that close to a Republican.
    All I can say is McCain's best bet is to pick a moderate conservative with a pro-life record. The more conservative the VP, the more he'll enable leftist backlash and scare away independents. The more liberal the VP, the more he'll enable the far-right neo-cons to stay at home on election day.

    Either way, as long as Obama picks a decent VP that isn't too controversial, I think he wins the VP pick. McCain isn't liked too much by the far-right base anyway, at this point.

    August 19, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  22. Scott, Wichita

    I hate these radical activists. Who cares what they think? They are so far to the right or left, that their ideal candidates can never be elected because the majority of Americans reside in the center!

    We NEED a Liberal Republican or a Conservative Democrat president! Maybe then, something might actually get done, because they'd know how to work with both sides!

    August 19, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  23. McCain's illegitimate child

    McCain simply cannot pick a pro-choice running mate. Abortion is an abomination and a terrible sin. (Adultery's okay though. Just ask Cindy).

    August 19, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  24. US SOLDIER

    If that is all it takes to get ride of McShame then PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE pick Ridge. I will support that!!!

    August 19, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  25. INSANE IN THE MCCAIN

    Somebody please answer why they think Clinton would win. All I hear is that she would definately win and Obama has no chance. It is baffling that people are that delusional. Hillarry lost the primary, is the most polarizing figure in politics, has promoted disunity (in both parties and bipartisan efforts),and Republicans hate her so much they would actually unify to whoop her butt by a landslide.

    August 19, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
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