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. Karen from Charlottesville

    Jim Webb is a good Senator but he is terrible on the campaign trail. I respect him and supported him but it was certainly painful to watch his race for the Senate. I think there are other candidates who would be a much better match for Obama, Mark Warner being at the top of the list. He did a terrific job as Governor of VA, is well respected here and is a fiscal conservative, which is the one thing that worries me about Obama. I think Warner would provided a lot of balance to the executive branch.

    July 7, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  2. Bill in Virginia

    Obama still has some great VP picks to choose from such as Evan Bayh and Joe Biden. They both have indicated they are interested.

    My hunch is that it will be Biden.

    Biden's been in the Senate since 1972(?) and is almost certainly ready for a different kind of challenge. Plus, he'll bring foreighn policy experience to the ticket and can challenge McCain toe-to-toe in matters related to military issues.

    Obama/Biden '08!!!

    July 7, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  3. Greg

    "It's the second coming either way, Obama is our savior, he can get it done himself!!!!"

    You have got to be kidding!! What a crock!! Obama is no one's savior. If anything he will destroy this country with his socialist tendencies.

    What ever happened to the American Dream? I'm talking about the American *Dream* not the nightmare where the government "provides" (by stealing from those living the Dream) for those who couldn't care less about their own lives. Tell ya what. If you don't care enough to get your own free healthcare (by getting a job!) and doing for yourself, I don't care to have money stolen from me to keep you going. How is that fair??

    July 7, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  4. Eileen from Maine

    I don't think anybody asked him to be.
    Just the media making a lot of noise trying to guess who will be VP, because they don't want to spend any money on actually researching or investigating anything to give us some real news.

    July 7, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  5. Roofin Reality, Houston, Tx.

    Well, for whatever his reasons, I can respect his desire to stay in the Senate.
    Thus, Bayh, Biden, Clark, Clinton, Hagel, Nunn, Sebelius are all other great choices.

    July 7, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  6. susie

    Obama flip -flop on debating McCain.

    July 7, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  7. terri

    I can understand why it will be a hard to say yes to a VP spot on the OBAMA ticket

    Who ever he chooses and they accept their entire life along with thier family, friends and anyone else they know will be put under a microscope even their pastor 🙂

    This postion will not be for the weak and easily intimidated

    Go Barack I will be your VP – Bring it on 🙂

    July 7, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  8. Jaci

    Webb has aspirations to be President and not VP.

    July 7, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  9. Jason

    I think Evan Bayh would be a great choice for Obama. No skeletons in his closet, a great governor in Indiana, a moderate Democrat that can deliver Indiana's electoral votes and have a positive spillover effect in Ohio. And Bayh doesn't upstage Obama and has the right amount of exectutive and foreign policy experience in the Senate.

    And in addition, Bayh is on record as being interested.

    Obama/Bayh would be unstoppable.

    July 7, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  10. Eileen from Maine

    posted by dimwit July 7th, 2008 3:52 pm ET

    Evidently no one wants to be the flip to Obama's flop..
    **********************************************************************************Funny you should bring that up dimwit, because there are about 14 well documented flip flops that McCain has made very recently.

    July 7, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  11. Jake

    As long as obama wins who cares. I can't wait to pay more taxes, stop driving my SUV, turn my back on corporations, wait 10-12 years for that alternative energy source, and let the UN tell us what to do for our foreign policy. I want socialism. Yeah, Vote for obama. Please tell us what to do obama, we are your sheep! Who cares that you flip flop more than a pancake at IHOP, please save us with your socialistic ideals.

    July 7, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  12. Chris

    It's time for Obama to name his V.P. before he run out of credible people. And for the record me thinks Webb was an awful choice. He needs a female on the ticket. A white female would be the best choice.

    July 7, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  13. Sharon

    To gluv -If it is Sebillus of Kansas – it would end any chance of Hillary supporters voting for Obama. Another slap in the face. Why not pick the best, but he is too arrogant to know it.

    July 7, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  14. John in Columbus Ohio

    It's unlikely to be *any* Democrat Senator, because that would require replacement elections in he Senate, as it would replace sitting Democrat Senators. We're already losing one Dem Senator (Obama) when he wins the Presidency, no need to lose another. I think a governor like Sebelius would be his best bet.

    July 7, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  15. Danel

    Wesley Clark is the man. Obama/Clark08. Both are very smart . They will compliment each other.

    July 7, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  16. Wolfie, WA

    This is a smart move by Webb. His senate seat was a major loss to the Republicans, and they want it back. If he were to leave the senate to run on the VP ticket that seat would be up for grabs, and without Webb and his incumbancy the Democrats would have a heck of a time keeping it.

    July 7, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  17. BROOKLYN

    Nominate Clinton... Otherwise you will be super bummed... Half her voters are still saying no to Obama.

    July 7, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  18. Alice in Florida

    Doesn't seem like too many people want the job – and I can understand why....without Hillary, Obama's finished in November, and maybe his ego is too big to realize it, but seems like most of the other Democrats do....

    Personally, I won't vote for him even IF Hillary is the VP candidate. Mr. Flip Flop Scared to Debate Ego in a Suit Obama scares the living "stuff" out of me – he reminds me of George W. Bush with a tan.

    July 7, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  19. Peg Robson

    The more down to earth and honest the person is they do not want to be involved with the Obama (maybe ) presidency. As far as I am concerned between him and McCain the choice is so pitiful..the next 4 years are going to be a real mess. Already the Obama flip flop is showing...wait, it will get worse. We must be the laughing stock of the entire world. First Bush gets elected twice on lies, now Obama and McCain. Our money is falling like a rock, this country is in huge trouble and the concentration seems to lie everywhere else. The day is coming and we will be marching in the streets.

    July 7, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  20. Paul

    Why is John Kerry not on this "short list"?
    I mean 65 Million people voted for him 4 years ago.... Has to pull some weight.

    July 7, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  21. From Hillary to Obama

    He was my first choice for VP sad day indeed =(

    July 7, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  22. Will in Richmond, VA

    My current short list is Clinton, Sebellous, and Clark, in that order.

    All three would be great I think.

    July 7, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  23. susie

    The media has done an injustice to the American people. Living in Michigan I thought that rally in Oregon with 50,000 plus people were there to see Obama. Now, I find out there was a free concert and that is why there was so many people! Why does the media try to deceive the American people? The media is so bias.

    July 7, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  24. Independent Voter

    This is old news. Webb said he did not want the position last month. I wouldn't want the Dems to lose a seat in the Senate anyway.

    Obama '08

    July 7, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  25. Haneef

    I think Senator Joe Biden makes the common sense choice for VP.

    July 7, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
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