July 16th, 2008
12:30 PM ET
14 years ago

Two potential VPs join Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/16/art.bayhnunn.gi.jpg caption="Nunn and Bayh are joining Obama Wednesday."]

(CNN) - Who Obama is campaigning with Wednesday just might get more attention than what the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate says.

The Illinois senator is set to be joined on the trail by Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh and former Georgia Sen. Sam Nunn - two Democrats widely believed to be on the shortlist for the vice presidential spot.

Election Center: Who's on Obama's shortlist

The two are set to join Obama at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana for a discussion on national security issues - a forum that is designed to set to stage for the Democratic president candidate's overseas trip next week.

Specifically, the three are set to discuss nuclear non-proliferation, bioterrorism, cyber security and emerging national security threats.

Bayh, who comes from a powerful Indiana family and once served as governor of the state, remains a very popular figure there. His aggressive campaigning on behalf of Hillary Clinton during the state's Democratic primary is widely seen as a chief factor for the New York senator's narrow victory there. He briefly flirted with his own presidential bid late last year but ultimately ruled against it.

Nunn remains one of the most respected national security and foreign policy experts on the national scene. The former senator has a serious, no-nonsense demeanor that would add instant gravitas to the ticket, and he is a popular figure in Georgia - a state the Obama campaign hopes to make competitive this cycle.

Veepstakes: Check out CNN's Political Market to see who's ahead

Both Nunn and Bayh have remained tight-lipped when it comes to the VP slot, though Bayh did acknowledge last month he would take the position if asked.

"I don't think it's the kind of thing you say no to…the answer to that is yes," he said in June. "If you care about serving your country, that is the kind of thing that you do,"

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (338 Responses)
  1. Ted from Washington, DC

    Thanks BullDog's

    First McCain said Obama was irresponsible for saying he would attack Al Queida in Pakistan if their was solid intelligence. Since calling Obama 'irresponsilbe' our miliarty has attacked Al Queida 4 times in Pakistan.

    McCain calls Obama naive and reckless for wanting to set a timetable to get out of Iraq. The sovereign Iraq government demands we set a timetable.

    McCain calls Obama reckless and an appeaser for saying he will sit down with leaders of countries unfriendly to the U.S. 3 months later the U.S. successfully appeases and negoitiates with N. Korea ('axis of evil') and they begin to dismantle their nuclear plants.

    McCain and Bush call Obama an appeaser and irresponsible for saying he wants direct diplomacy with unfriendly countries rather than threats of war. Just yesterday the State Department announces they are sending a top level official to Iran to sit down and have direct talks.

    Who has the judgement?

    July 16, 2008 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  2. Patricia

    Hello He Needs to put Clinton on that ticket...I am not voting if he doesnt....

    July 16, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  3. Watching from the Sidelines

    If Hillary is on the ticket, I vote for McCain. There's simply no way I'm going to watch another 4 years of Bill and Hillary pulling a Dick Cheney and taking as much power as they can.

    July 16, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  4. Sheri

    Whoever Senator OBAMA chooses will be a good choice and fine with me. Only one person he needs to avoid and that's HILLIARY

    July 16, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  5. smokey

    Personally, i think all the rehortic spewed by BO will begin to wear more thin with the voters the longer the campaign goes on. He has promised so much for so many complex issues that his credibiility will be so obvious.

    It might just be necessary for JM to take the WH this time and maybe Dems will wake up that they need someone witha lot more experience to lead the country. The voters are just not that gullibile. Having Richardson asa VP niminee would cement things for the Republicans.

    July 16, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  6. Tony, Miami

    Thank you bulldog you said it all.

    July 16, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  7. Voter

    The fact is that Hillary's ability to turn out the Democratic vote AND some Republicans is undisputed. She got more votes than Barry.

    The other fact is that Obama is intimidated by her because she runs circles around him. Imagine the Dems choosing a woman candidate with no experience and no credentials! Good luck!

    If he's the strong, independent "the buck stops here" candidate he would like us all to believe, Hillary would be a welcome addition. And the chance to get some private advice from Bill Clinton as well as public support would be viewed by Obama as a gift.

    Fact is he fears he'll look bad, and he's rather sacrifice America's interests than his own overblown ego – or is it that he lacks basic self confidence? Do you want a guy who can be so easily scared off in charge?

    I don't.

    July 16, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  8. chill

    To all the folks that entertain themselves by trying to bring down a truly great candidate –

    Please read every word of the Audacity of Hope and get back to us –

    Obama is no perfect human being, nor is he the next coming, or the messiah – He is a leader of high intellect and moral judgement that we all can be proud of. After the last 8 years – let's get real and give this man a chance to lead this great nation. If you are violently against this guy – it suggests a dark cynicism that no president can cure and is more insightful of what you are lacking than anything else – if not worse.

    Wake up folks.

    Thanks –

    July 16, 2008 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  9. Jan, Knoxville, TN

    Message to Barack Obama: I like Evan Bayh but I think Joe Biden would be a better choice with all his foreign policy knowledge which is a far greater experience than McCain boasts of. I also like John Edwards. Nunn is smart but too dull. Put him in your cabinet. Thanks!

    July 16, 2008 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  10. garry

    Obama is not in any way down about anything, and he won't be. He is the best candidate. He wins in November.

    July 16, 2008 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  11. Mickie in PA

    These Hillary fanatics crack me up. What has she done while in the Senate except Bush everything he wanted. We don't need any more dynasties running this country, leave that up to Europe. I like the idea of either Nunn or Bayh. I think Hillary would only cause friction and her and Bill would try to run the show as if they were the President.

    July 16, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  12. Pat-Pittsburgh

    Nunn of the above!

    As for Hagel, as some have suggested, would that not secure a great chance for a repub to take the WH in 2012 or 2016. If, God forbid somethng were to happen to BO, the VP, Hagel, would be president and a repub would be in charge again.

    Is this change? Think people think!!!!!

    July 16, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  13. Edith Arkansas


    July 16, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  14. Rita

    Hey Democrats, read Bayh's information on Wikipedia. I think he would be an excellent choice, and although he knocked Obama in the primaries the fact that he stated he would take the VP slot in the Obama administration says something.

    July 16, 2008 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  15. Obama/Hillary 08

    yes we can take America back.

    July 16, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  16. Throw Hillary Off The Train

    It's very funny to see people holding on to the thought of Hillary Clinton being the nominee. What will it take for you people to realize it aint gonna happen?

    July 16, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  17. Lorna, NY

    I have never heard of either of these guys before this column and find it hard to believe they can help Obama win the election. I have spent so much of my time debating back and forth on whether I would vote for an Obama ticket if it did not include Hillary, and I still do not know how I will vote as of today.
    It is sad that people like you have the right to vote! Please do some reasearch on Sam Nunn and Evan Byah, you will find out exactly who they are.

    July 16, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  18. Steve, New York, New York

    Sam Nunn would be a FANTASTIC choice . . .

    Though I really hope that my friend Chuck Hagel might also have a spot somewhere in this administration (Defense Secretary, perhaps?)

    July 16, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  19. db

    What would make this even more funny is if indeed the Dems nominated Hillary at there convention. Hillary is on an ego trip and is going to crash and burn. No way would Obama and Clinton make a good team.

    What about Jesse Jackson? He is well versed and has more gas than Bush's baked beans.

    July 16, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  20. Fair and Balanced

    Wow, no executive experience on this ticket.

    July 16, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  21. cath

    obama/edwards 08

    July 16, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  22. Lorna, NY

    After reading some of these comments, I realized that racism is not the issue in this country. It is the idiots versus the intelligent. In November, intelligence will prevail.

    July 16, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  23. Syl

    obama needs Hillary to win, period.

    July 16, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  24. Wynter

    Can we just stop the predictions and speculations on the candidates? Its been a rough political year and a half. Can we just let them talk to us and keep the news pundits on mute?

    It would be appreciated!

    July 16, 2008 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  25. An American

    Repeat it with me naysayers... President Obama!

    July 16, 2008 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
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