June 22nd, 2008
04:00 PM ET
14 years ago

Tom Ridge not ruling out a VP run

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/22/art.tomridge.gi.jpg caption="Former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge, appearing on 'Fox News Sunday,' said he wouldn't rule out being Sen. John McCain's vice president - if asked - but would have to first discuss a policy position that sets him apart from the Arizona senator: Abortion rights.

"If he asks me, we'll have a private conversation and we'll decide whether or not we ought to tell you what we said," Ridge said.

Host Chris Wallace pressed Ridge on his pro-abortion rights views - something critics say could hurt his chances of running with McCain, who has anti-abortion positions.

So would Ridge's views conflict with his support for a McCain administration? Apparently not.

"Obviously, the vice president's job is to support once a decision is made, whether it's on social issues, economic issues or diplomatic issues, the position of the president of the United States," he said.

"But that doesn't mean that you don't share a belief that you've had your entire life. But again, those are really difficult and challenging questions when the vice president and the president disagree on a wide range of issues, but the vice president's job is to support the administration."

Ridge, the former governor of Pennslyvania, could help McCain in the state, which is in play this year. As a moderately conservative Catholic, he could aid in other states with independent voters.

Interactive: CNN's electoral map

But his position in favor of abortion rights could hurt McCain among the more conservative GOP base.

McCain voted for the Prohibit Partial Birth Abortion bill in 2003 and "yes" for Prohibiting Funds for Groups that Perform Abortions amendment in 2007. He also believes Roe v. Wade is a flawed decision that must be overturned, and supports the Supreme Court ruling upholding the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act.

Ridge said Sunday, though, his own views will not change - vice presidency or not.

"I've had that point of view before I got into elected office. I've had it when I served, and I have it now ... we're not a one-issue party. Never have, never will be, although it's very important to our
base. And it's very, very important to Sen. McCain."

Former South Dakota Sen. Tom Daschle, appearing alongside Ridge, was also asked if he'd serve as Sen. Barack Obama's vice president.

Daschle quipped, "I'd say Tom Ridge would make a great V.P. candidate, Chris."

Wallace asked,"For Barack Obama?"

"No, no, no, for John McCain,"he said.

Daschle - an Obama supporter - reiterated that he is not seeking the vice presidency and hasn't talked to Obama about it.

"I don't expect to be asked. And I have no interest. .... I'm not looking for it."

Filed under: John McCain • Tom Ridge
soundoff (110 Responses)
  1. Crush Rush

    Yippie, a false flag flying Neocon,just what the extremist right wing ordered.If you liked Cheney,you will love this version.We can have color alerts everyday and twice on Sunday.

    June 22, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  2. Upon Further Review


    June 22, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  3. Raymond Duke

    I think it would be a major mistake to pick Tom Ridge for the vp. He does not know how to deliver a speech or does not know how to fight tough. John McCain needs an articulte fighter for vp and one that the people would want in case something happen to him. Huckabee fits both of these catergories. He don't need Ridge to win pennsylvania. I think Obama has lost that state no matter how much Rendell campagins for him. People in pennsylvania don't like being called uneducated racist and bitter gun toting religious nuts. because they liked Hillary better.The only ones that will support Obama in pennsylvania or Phildephia, mostly black and liberals and some college votes.

    June 22, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  4. A Nightingale Sings in Berkley Square

    It may be a smart move, but let's get serious. He laughs too much when he speaks to the media and to the audience. I think it is a quirk and makes him come off as insincere.

    I will support anyone that John McCain selects as the ticket would be better than the spend and tax Obama.

    I see that Obama will bring out a new rope a dope a day just to get the crowd excited. No harm done, he would say, but cause some excitement in an otherwise dull news day. Give me a break another idiotic attempt at levity.

    Either Obama is the world's biggest fool or a complete idiot for putting a neo-presidential seal on his podium. If he can change the seal of the president, what makes you sure he won't change the name of the president's house. Give me a break! I like the name of Our White House. No change please.

    I, for one, hope the closest he gets to the White House is the outhouse. He doesn't belong there as he is a serial quitter and a girlie man.

    Second, did you see his gloves? Nice and frilly don't you think? What a comical cartoon character he is becoming.

    How can anyone take him seriously. He is a clown. I saw new pictures today of sand baggers. I noticed not one was wearing gloves or girlie gloves like Obama likes to wear.

    Give me a good old fashioned candidate with our values.

    June 22, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  5. Mike

    Isn't this the guy who went on national tv and told Americans that duct tape is our best defense against a chemical attack? Sounds like VP material to me!
    Obama in a landslide. It's a new dawn...

    June 22, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  6. Phil, FL

    Hey – good match.

    Ridge had convicted felons acting as his body-guards (armed) when he was Gov.

    McCain IS a flip-flopper !!

    Divorced (changed his mind? circumstances changed, wife got fat and became disabled? flip-flopped about promise before God and Man). The ULTIMATE flip-flop so he could have his cutesy little millionairess.

    What else has he flip-flopped on?

    June 22, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  7. Vig

    Well, this would be a good choice – somebody with homeland security background – get Obama in there and he will be removing women with scarfs from his back drops, inciting resentments. Write-in Hillary on your November ballot and get a leader in the White House, not a lecturer.

    June 22, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  8. Franky

    To be honest guys, McCain couldv'e had it better. We know what happen in Cali, right? You know, the gay marriage?? I'm not gonna lie but Senator McCain couldv'e taken the protesters if he wouldv'e said something. And since he wants to have a chance in Cali, that probably was his only chance(not counnting the off shore, still a long shot). I'm not saying he shouldv'e stood up for what he believes because quite frankly, that's what he's doing. All I'm saying is I don't know what he believes in.....

    Me personally, I hate abortion! I mean, I think is a disgrace! And I'm not gonna go far and say that is not fair but I will say that I do believe is unfortunate that they have to do that and I have 7 sisters! LOL!!! What bothers me is not whether they can't take care of it or not, is whether they understand about life because in my opinion, they don't....

    Can I tell you something guys? I'm not gonna lie but I don't agree with many issues with my boy. I mean, let's face it! Do you think I wanna wake up one morning and getting ready for work in the "plant"..........literally! LOL!!!! Talk about going green. And do you think that I agree with his ideaology??? Don't get me wrong, this is not being a liberal but what I call it a, "Liberal Haduken", LOL!!!!!! That's a Street Fighter thing, LOL!!!

    Let's face it guys, my boy has ideas that pretty much you like it or not. Is different ideas, to tell you the truth but little do people know that I still believe strongly in what I believe. NO ONE is taking that away from me. Listen guys, I don't think being a conservative is someone who can't accept change. Why??? Because MY God tells me to expect it....

    June 22, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  9. Jan From Boca Raton, Fl.

    John McCain is Anti Abortion, but that is his right . He will not try to
    over turn Roe v Wade if he is elected. He has already stated that.

    Remember John Kennedy was Anti Abortion, he was a devout catholic, and that certainly didn't hurt him as being one of the best
    Presidents in history.

    June 22, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  10. Bill

    McCain shouldn't pick Ridge as VP... just my opinion

    June 22, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  11. JASON

    Ridge is a good man, a man of integrity; his odds of becoming VP were much greater in my opinion with George W. Bush than with McCain. As to Ridge delivering PA, where I live, it is doubtful since his successor as governor, Ed Rendell, is the new standard for statewide election, extremely popular, and will probably be able to swing this toss-up state to Obama–whether Rendell is Obama's vp candidate or not.

    June 22, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  12. Monica for Obama in Indiana

    Any body can go on McCain's ticket as long as they are Presidential material, because McCain is going to last long because of his loss of memory.

    Ron Paul would be good in anybody's administration

    Go get um! Obama

    June 22, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  13. shane

    Wouldn't be very smart for John Mccain to pick Ridge. Voters, including myself, see Mccain as a warmed over version of Bush. TO pick his former homeland security chief would be a disaster. LEts not forget that Ridge is the chief architect of the unconstitutional Patriot ACT. Ridge played a huge part in the creation of Guantanamo and had his hand in the Iraq war debacle. As an Obama supporter I would love for Mccain to pick a BUsh insider. THis would just buttress B.O.'s claim that Mccain is 3rd Bush term

    Obama/bloomberg 08

    June 22, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  14. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    big woo.... I wouldn't rule it out either.... SO WHAT?

    June 22, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  15. randy

    Well may the best person in both parties get the VP.

    June 22, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  16. Joe Reed

    Tom who? He already proved to be a terrible manager when he took up the Department of Homeland Security..Red Code, Yellow Code, Green Code...what a joke!

    June 22, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  17. Marie in California

    Not a good choice for VP. Ridge couldn't bring anything to the ticket that would appeal to voters. Jindal is another story....but so very young .... and inexperienced.

    But then, the Democrats are running an inexperienced candidate too.....and for president, of all things!

    McCain – 2008

    June 22, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  18. randy

    While every body dont agree with john macain we dont even care who his VP is because he will loose in november and really in on on big way.

    June 22, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  19. I Used To Be A Democrat

    John McCain would be wise not to ask this guy. What a chump.

    June 22, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  20. rosestoraska

    You know, the court could have thrown out Roe vs. Wade many times over the Republican reign–it did not happen. Stop scarring the world over this one. What would be scary is what the (?) kid on the opposite ticket might come up with as potential court seats. Fear is mostly in the unknown?

    June 22, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  21. The truth will set you free!

    Dear God help us when the most innocent of humanity, unborn babies, are so easily killed for the convenience and greed of others.

    Animals and their unborn are more cherished by these killers/abortionists than our own human unborn babies. THINK ABOUT THAT! Those who would die to save a dog or cat are sometimes killing their own.

    Ridge and other killers/abortionists will have to answer to their Maker and I would not want to be in their place when they do.

    June 22, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  22. mike

    I am sure working with Mccain it will be lost of your time. I i was offered VP i would never run with flip floper becasue i am straight forwar guy and i hate liars.

    June 22, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  23. April

    Tom Ridge? I most certainly hope not if McCain is to win the White House. Enough said.

    June 22, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  24. Joe Reg




    FOR VP

    June 22, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  25. DT

    Tom Ridge? Wasn't he in charge of the Department of Homeland Insecurity? That agency designed to make Americans feel they were more secure, but really was a good cover by Bush to invade the privacy of U.S. citizenry without providing much more than a "feel good" sensation? I don't recall him doing an incredibly good job, be it at protecting us, or even pretending to.

    I want him on the McCain ticket about as much as I'd want Hillary Clinton on the Obama ticket –which is to say, not at all. I'd like to see the candidates choose VPs this year who echo their own views for change, not those designed to court a wider spread of votes by appearing to be a compromise.

    June 22, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
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