July 29th, 2012
10:38 AM ET
2 years ago

Cheney: Picking Palin in 2008 was a 'mistake'

(CNN) – Sen. John McCain made a mistake in 2008 by picking then-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate, former Vice President Dick Cheney said in an interview that aired Sunday.

Cheney led the vice presidential search for Gerald Ford in 1976, and again for George W. Bush in 2000. That last search resulted in Cheney himself being selected, and he served as Bush's number two for eight years.

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On Sunday, Cheney said Palin failed to meet the number one requirement for a vice president: a readiness to step into the top job if needed.

"Based on her background, she was only governor for two years, I don't think she passed that test of being ready to take over. And I think that was a mistake," Cheney said in an interview with ABC News.

Cheney, who said he knows and likes Palin, argued that considerations about which demographic a potential candidate could help pull in clouded the 2008 decision to put Palin on the ticket.

"Those are important issues but they should never be allowed to override that first proposition and I think that's one of the problems that McCain had," Cheney said.

READ MORE: McCain, Liz Cheney push back on Palin 'mistake'

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Filed under: Dick Cheney • John McCain • Sarah Palin
soundoff (591 Responses)
  1. Doug

    "Biden was quoted as saying Obama was in way over his head and not qualified to be the President"

    Thanks to Barack this is the first factual comment ever made from Joe that is not plagerism.

    July 30, 2012 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  2. Rick C.

    Cheney: Picking Palin in 2008 was a 'mistake'

    That's the FIRST truthful thing to ever come out of that man's mouth.

    July 30, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  3. wgf

    Does anyone remember that Cheney spent the first year of the Obama administration going around saying that under O'Bama a terrorist attack on our country was a virtual certainty ? What a tool.

    July 30, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  4. rosie

    Uh Dick, you are just finding this out. the rest of knew this back in 2008. I am so glad you are no longer in Washington, using that sharp mind of yours.

    July 30, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  5. Olaf Big

    Cheney is right of course, but that's 20/20 hindsight after Sarah had shown her amazing lack of preparation and severe intellectual limitations on the campaign trail. I don't even think McCain campaign went after demographics, more like after a good visual, a young sprightly woman next to a grizzled old soldier. It might even have worked, if they found a way to make her stick to a simple script whenever she opened her mouth.

    July 30, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  6. richwood7

    Confused wrote:
    How is Bush's selection of Cheney a mistake? He won twice with Cheney on the ticket.

    That was the mistake they won. The GOP and Bush.Cheney set the USA back ten to fifteen years and the GOP is set to do it again. This will be know as the lost decade of America thanks to the GOP. If America ever recovers, China will be so far ahead we will always play second fiddle. Romney is just Bush III but with a different name but the same agenda, the complete destruction of America

    July 30, 2012 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  7. james - St. Paul, MN

    "Was a mistake?" I believe the more appropriate comment is that Palin "IS a mistake."

    July 30, 2012 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  8. ge

    looks like cheney wants to pick romneys VP more blood money

    July 30, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  9. g

    mccain had to choose between palin and romney–i can see why he picked palin no contest

    July 30, 2012 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  10. mobotto

    Cheney still alive?? I guess the devil does not die

    July 30, 2012 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  11. Tell It Like It Is

    Cheney should add McCain was a not so great a pick either. And did the Republicans really think picking a RINO who didn't have much charisma was going to get elected? They have almost done the same thing this time. Picked Romney, another RINO, who though may not be as old as McCain, is so far rather lackluster. That said, the economy stinks, so therefore Obama may still lose, especially if gas prices keep going up. It's going to be close. No 'landslide' victory this time, for whichever candidate wins.

    July 30, 2012 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  12. Cynic

    Sarah Palin? She is SOOOOOO 2008!

    July 30, 2012 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  13. founders1791

    We are seeing the affects of Sarah 's endorsements on these Establishment Cronies.

    NONE of the Bush, Cheney, Rove picks have won against Sarah this year despite millions spent.

    Where there is smoke there is fire and Governor Palin is burning down the house ...the Establishment's House.

    The Republicans in Name Only have been complicit with Democrats in
    destroying our culture, freedoms, and finances for 100 YEARS.

    TIME FOR A WHOLESALE CHANGE – and Sarah is the agent for that ...sudden and relentless change

    July 30, 2012 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  14. kevindaltam

    I have to assume he not only got a new heart, but also a few IQ points along with it.
    Palin was beyond a mistake to everyone but Tina Fay. Seems Romnwey has a bit of Palin in him
    as well, how many countries is he pizzing off every time he opens his mouth on his trip.
    England, half the Arib nation, I'm sure the list will grow. Guess that's what we get for anothe
    B-list guy. Let's not forget he lost big time the last time he tried to buy the job 4 years ago.

    July 30, 2012 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  15. There. Are. No. Gods!

    "That last search resulted in Cheney himself being selected, and he served as Bush's number two for eight years." Lol Cheney was Bush's number two. Hahaha. They got that right.

    July 30, 2012 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  16. trumod

    This just in: so was Dick Cheney.

    July 30, 2012 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  17. DIna

    Cheney proved himself a failure with Iraq. Wasted thousands of lives and about a trillion of our dollars. 'nuff said.

    July 30, 2012 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  18. Mr 1% the "VULTURE CAPITALIST BUSINESSMAN" will outsource all the poor, disabled, unemployed and elderly, to China and sell America to the highest bidder!

    The Dick just said picking Palin was a mistake.

    And McCrypt picked the "mistake" over Mittens?

    Speaks volumes about those tax returns McCrypt saw, but now is off limits to the voting public.

    July 30, 2012 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  19. nanotechnology

    The scary part is that the Republicans knew she wasn't qualified, but rallied around her just so they could win the Presidency. Screw the American people. And when true concervatives like David Brooks spoke out, they were royally condemned by the party. It seems that all they want is to maintain power, no matter what the cost to the country. How patriotic is that?

    July 30, 2012 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  20. Patriot Awesome

    I think Hell just froze over. I'm agreeing with Cheney on this one.

    July 30, 2012 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  21. Laverne

    Yes, McCain did make a mistake picking Palin and Bush made an even worse mistake picking Cheney. He is a miserable, hateful, mean spirited old man who wishes it was legal to hang Obama.

    July 30, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  22. Jack

    What?! Palin was a mistake? I can't believe it. No one told me. This is the first time I've heard of this.

    July 30, 2012 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  23. Wake up people

    Show us your taxes Willard!

    OBAMA 2012!

    July 30, 2012 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  24. "The Impact"....

    Here we are in 2012 and Sarah Palin is still on the menue....The country would today be better off if we never heard of Bush/Cheney...and a lot better off today with McCain/Palin......

    July 30, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  25. Eddie The Barber

    Maybe somebody already said this in the 550 comments posted but anyway:

    Palin was a mistake; Mcain was a mistake; W. Bush was a mistake; Cheney was a huge mistake; and Romney will be a gigantic mistake because we're still diggin out of the Bush/Cheney mistake. Romney would be like applying a blow torch to a 3rd degree burn that hasn't nearly healed yet.

    July 30, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
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