July 8th, 2008
09:29 AM ET
12 years ago

Webb says no to being VP

Webb says he does not want to be asked to be the No.2.

Webb says he does not want to be asked to be the No.2.

(CNN) - You can officially scratch off Sen. Jim Webb's name from the list of Barack Obama's potential running mates.

The freshmen senator from Virginia and onetime Republican said unequivocally Monday he does not want to be the Illinois senator's No. 2.

Watch: How to get on the VP shortlist

"Last week I communicated to Senator Obama and his presidential campaign my firm intention to remain in the United States Senate, where I believe I am best equipped to serve the people of Virginia and this country," Webb said in an issued statement. “Under no circumstances will I be a candidate for Vice President."

Webb, a moderate Democrat and Vietnam veteran who successfully unseated former Virginia Sen. George Allen in 2006, has often been mentioned as a potential VP choice given his likely appeal in more conservative states, his early opposition to the Iraq war, and his credibility with military issues.

Election Center: Who's on the VP shortlists?

The Virginia senator also co-sponsored the Senate G.I. benefits bill passed this spring that seeks to increase tuition reimbursements for veterans. Despite an initial veto threat, President Bush signed the bill into law last week.

"I entered elective politics because of my commitment to strengthen America's national security posture, to promote economic fairness, and to increase government accountability," Webb also said. "I have worked hard to deliver upon that commitment, and I am convinced that my efforts and talents toward those ends are best served in the Senate."

Webb did not endorse a Democratic candidate during the primary season. Fellow Virginians Tim Kaine, the state’s governor, and Mark Warner, a former governor who is currently running for Senate, were also considered to be on in contention for the VP slot. Warner also took himself out of the running last month.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Jim Webb
soundoff (283 Responses)
  1. Peter E

    Webb has a sense of self-respect...

    July 7, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  2. Kevin

    Very interesting. He's been divorced a few times and i didn't think he would have been a strong choice anyway.

    July 7, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  3. John WA

    Obama / Clark 2008

    July 7, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  4. Don in Georgia

    Vote McCain...... Minorities don't have what it takes, and women will cry when we need them to be strong.

    July 7, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  5. Matt, Minneapolis, MN

    Wow I wonder if I say something negative about St. Obama's over coverage will it get posted, or is the moderator's true color really going to show. Let's see him find someone as full of hot, meaningless, partisan air as himself to run alongside him. He could have kept his jet aloft for hours just by giving one of his chincy, over the top, no substance, "HOPE" or "CHANGE" speeches.

    July 7, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  6. Linda from Prescott AZ

    Obama will choose the right person for the job and that person will say yes.

    July 7, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  7. susie

    Before you vote REMEMBER:

    Remember the elections of 2006?
    America voted for change in 2006 and we now have the Democrats running congress –

    In just two years .

    Thought you might like to read the following:
    A little over one year ago:

    1) Consumer confidence stood at a 2 1/2 year high;
    2) Regular gasoline sold for $2.19 a gallon;
    3) The unemployment rate was 4.5%.

    SINCE voting in a Democratic Congress in 2006 we have seen:
    1) Consumer confidence plummet;
    2) The cost of regular gasoline soar to over $3.90 a gallon;
    3) Unemployment is up to 5% (a 10% increase);
    4) American households have seen $2.3 trillion in equity value evaporate (stock and mutual fund losses);
    5) Americans have seen their home equity drop by $1.2 trillion dollars;
    6) 1% of American homes are in foreclosure.

    Remember it's Congress that makes law not the President. He has to work with what's handed to him.

    Congress' approval rating is the lowest it has every been in history - lower than the President.

    Just keep voting for Democrats and we are steps closer to a Socialist govenment.

    July 7, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  8. Obama or Bust

    There's nothing wrong with not wanting to be VP. They don't do much. Jim Webb would rather stay a Senator? Great, if that's what he wants, terrific!

    I still think Sam Nunn would be a good option for Obama. He would bring foreign policy experience and could help deliver Georgia to Obama. Bill Richardson is also still in the mix.

    Clinton will NOT and should NOT be considered for VP. Just as many voters would be less likely to vote for Obama if he picked her as would be more likely to vote or him if he picked her. He will win New York anyway. A majority of women will still vote for Obama in the fall. Clinton has been considered. Next.

    July 7, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  9. Just The Obvious

    Who can blame him.

    Bush has created such a BIG MESS, it is not going be easy to find someone who will be willing to take-on the task of cleaning-up all the TRASH Bush has created and has scattered throughout this country.

    McCain doesn't have the capability of handling this task as well. Even though McCain is entitled to it – since he helped create it.

    July 7, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  10. Peter E

    Come on, this whole VP 'anticipation' is a charade. Obama (more accurately, his powerful old democrat friends like Ted Kennedy, Howard Dean, and the rest of the old-democrat establishment) has already made up his mind. He is just going through the list of eliminated people and telling them to save face and score political points by bowing out themselves.

    July 7, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  11. Hillary Backer for McCain

    Adam PAC MAN Jones for Veep !!

    July 7, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  12. Marc

    Kudos to Sen. Webb. No reason to back this bum.

    July 7, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  13. Amerika

    Hillary ran against an inexperienced and unqualified young person in the democratic primary. Just because he was half black, her audacity to run made her a RACIST.

    Obama ran against a strong, experienced, intelligent, qualified person. Since she was middle aged, white and a woman, that makes HIM an ageist, reverse-racist, sexist misogynist.

    Folks... being black is NOT a qualification for president.

    SO... why is the more qualified, better prepared, most experienced candidate of them all, now forced to stump for the lightweight?

    Oh... but this isn't about race, is it?

    July 7, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  14. Peter

    Webb was not ready to step into the national limelight. Good for him for making a smart decision. What this has to do with Obama's candidacy, however, escapes me.

    Obama is young but he is smart and accomplished. And, as I have said before, President is no longer a one-man job. (Didn't you see Cheney's lips move when Bush spoke.) Watch him pick a strong running mate and then put together a strong Cabinet.

    July 7, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  15. Not fooled by distractions

    Kathy July 7th, 2008 3:58 pm ET

    Webb clearly is not a big FAN of Obama.

    Oh really – Did billo or rush tell you that? Or are you psychic?

    July 7, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  16. Nick

    Evan Bayh. Win the midwest! You need a VP who can contribute to your organization. Bayh has a political machine set up in the midwest. Combine with yours and the midwest will fall like dominos. If you can sweep there you have it locked up, and all these states where you hope to "change the electoral map" will be gravy on top. Don't pick someone who may carry one red state. It didn't work for Kerry. Pick someone who can and will carry many purple states.

    July 7, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  17. Marilyn

    Webb is a smart man. Moderate Democrats will not be VOTING for Obama either.

    July 7, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  18. Rick

    The dumbest man in politics(no, not Al Gore.....he's the second dumbest), Bill Richardson is jumping for joy...his hopes are still alive!

    July 7, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  19. Amerika

    Food for thought:
    Hillary ran against an inexperienced and unqualified young person in the democratic primary. Just because he was half black, her audacity to run made her a RACIST.

    Obama ran against a strong, experienced, intelligent, qualified person. Since she was middle aged, white and a woman, that makes HIM an ageist, reverse-racist, sexist misogynist.

    Folks... being black is NOT a qualification for president.

    SO... why is the more qualified, better prepared, most experienced candidate of them all, now forced to stump for the lightweight?

    Oh... but this isn't about race, is it?

    July 7, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  20. rachel

    Can't say I blame him at this point obama and his supporters feel that he doesn't need a vp. I am a Hillary girl and I use to want her on the ticket but now I am not sure, cause I dont want him using her as his attack dog cause he scared to debate or take a stance on something and then when she ways something blame her. While the democrat elites seems to hail him a hero it seems many regular democrat folks seem cold or luke warm to him.

    July 7, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  21. JT

    One step closer to Evan Bayh!

    July 7, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  22. FactCheck

    > Obama has made this race all about HIMSELF. I can understand why
    > so many have declined the VP spot. They can smell a LOSER.

    Leave your mother out of this.

    July 7, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  23. Amerika

    Every one knows who the real Obama IS... and no one seems to want to be on the ticket with him.

    July 7, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  24. John McCain

    Can I be VP?

    July 7, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  25. Minnesota against Johnny McSame

    His pro-confedracy views would have been a distraction and a problem anyway.

    July 7, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
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