June 22nd, 2008
04:00 PM ET
12 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. jim

    I am a Democrat and my family voted for Bill Clinton 2 times, Al Gore, John Kerry and was very glad to see Ridge leave us at Pennsylvania,. We will be voting for Mc Cain. Mc Cain 08 H. Clinton12

    June 22, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  2. Ben

    Who cares who the vice president is. Until Harry Truman the vice president had been refered to as the most insignificant post in govt.
    After Roosevelt died he became president and put us into a war with Corea.Since then a vice president has become important. If he dies, and the president a

    June 22, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  3. YOU DO or YOU DON'T

    TELL THE TRUTH .............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..............SUPPORT YOUR VALUES !!!!!!

    June 22, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  4. Speechless

    Some of Those Endorsing Obama:

    – Louis Farrakhan ( Nation of Islam Leader, racist, anti-Semite)
    – Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades ( Islamic Terror Organization)
    – Raila Odinga ( Fundamental Islamic candidate, Kenya,poss. cousin)
    – Daniel Ortega ( Marxist Sandinista Leader, Nicaragua)
    – Raul Castro ( Hard-line Communist Party)
    – Socialist Party ( Marxist Political Party)
    – The New Black Panthers Party ( Black Militant Organization)
    – Hamas Terrorist Organization ( Islamic Terrorist Organization)

    Why are so many American enemies rooting for Sen. Obama???

    June 22, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  5. Sylvia Johnsen

    Everybody wants to be VP, only one of them has 18 million votes.

    June 22, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  6. Rob indetroit

    Tom Ridge, It would be like watching paint dry.

    June 22, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  7. TWO-BIRDS-OF-A-FEATHER.......

    RIDGE & RICHARDSON ON THE SAME PAGE TWO OF A KIND AND NOT TOO BRIGHT NEITHER. VP- MATERIAL ??? haha

    June 22, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  8. TWO-BIRDS-OF-A-FEATHER.......

    RIDGE & RICHARDSON ON THE SAME PAGE TWO OF A KIND AND NOT TOO BRIGHT NEITHER. VP- MATERIAL ??? haha

    GO-GO CNN HABA AND PRING ALREADY

    June 22, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  9. TWO-BIRDS-OF-A-FEATHER.......

    RIDGE & RICHARDSON ON THE SAME PAGE TWO OF A KIND AND NOT TOO BRIGHT NEITHER. VP- MATERIAL ??? haha

    Yahoo...cnn where are you ???

    June 22, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  10. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Isn't Tom Ridge the same cronie that Bush hired and fired as head of Homeland Security.

    June 22, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  11. Raymond

    Yes, Tom go for it. Then we be be sure of an Obama victory. HURRY
    GO OBAMA

    June 22, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  12. bernice

    LOSERS

    June 22, 2008 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  13. Doris,Memphis,TN

    Senator McCain does not have an agenda.
    All of his time is spent on attacking Obama.
    This flip flopper needs help from someone.

    June 22, 2008 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  14. Trent

    He should rule it out if the GOP wants to win in Nov.

    June 22, 2008 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  15. Charlotte

    Isn't this the guy with the, deer in the headlight, look? McCains VP will need to be the best, of the best. I don't think Tom Rodge is that person.

    June 22, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  16. Rob indetroit

    I hope John Mccain picks Tom Ridge more votes for Obama.

    June 22, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  17. The Other Campaign Strategist for 115th St & Amsterdam Ave

    Tom .... what have you been doing with yourself since you opted out of the Bush Administration's Homeland Security post?

    ...Run with Barack

    June 22, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  18. David

    Not well rounded enough, a male at McCains age (and especially his medical history) is more likely then not to encounter a major health issue in the next 4 1/2 years that will not allow him to effectively conduct or complete his term.

    June 22, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  19. J.C.

    Governor Ridge was an outstanding governor for PA. I think his administration is hard for Gov. Rendell to compete with. He would be a great VP for Senator McCain.

    It's impossible to find two people agreeing on all issues. As long as the VP doesn't intend to be the co-president, it will work out for the nation no matter which party we are talking about.
    Obama/Hillary will be a nightmare ticket.

    June 22, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  20. Vic

    I am so glad that people are starting to talk about the flip flop in this campaign. It probably hurt John Kerry in 2004. That was the political points that the GOP's dictator-like attacks on Mr. Kerry were based on. Fast forward to today and McCain is doing the same thing. One minute he says "we will be in Iraq for 50 or more years" then he rebuttals and says "what i meant....." Yes we have been in Korea for a long time but are there citizens rising up against us? No. In the host of other countries that we have troops do we get attacked on the scale that our troops are attacked in Iraq? So Mr McCain what is your long term plan for America? Never mind I'll wait until you flip because your original answer flopped.

    June 22, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  21. TXus Steve

    I will never understand how anyone (especially a Catholic) can support the murder of an unborn human being. I'm a moderate Catholic, but this is only one influence on my belief. The fundemental right to exist seems to trump any ideoligical belief.

    I have always been confused how so-called conservatives are the group labeled as war mongers and stand up for this belief in life and yet so-called liberals that want to protect every other life on the planet but unborn humans do NOT stand up for our country's first defined right...that of LIFE!!!

    Human life should not be sacrificed for one's understandibly impacted convenience. A solution to that social woe MUST be found in another manner besides termination of the indefensible human life.

    June 22, 2008 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  22. blueheartv2

    Who on earth would really think Tom Ridge would make a good VP??

    I'm not maying much attention to ANY of this – Let Obama & McCain ( and their advisors) decide.

    June 22, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  23. J M

    Are you Serious?
    This guy is known for one thing only scare tactics! he came up with the color coded alerts!

    June 22, 2008 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  24. j

    Not interested. McCain doesn't represent my views or values so it doesn't matter who he picks for VP, I'm not voting for him.

    June 22, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  25. Pete

    HA, HA, HA, HA, HA,.....WHAT A JOKE! To bozos one ticket!

    June 22, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
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