July 22nd, 2008
09:00 AM ET
13 years ago

McCain camp: Talk of a VP announcement this week

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/21/art.mccain07.gi.jpg caption="McCain aides hope VP speculation grabs some of the spotlight from Obama."] (CNN) - Sources in John McCain's campaign confirm to Dana Bash and Gloria Borger that there have been recent discussions high in the campaign about the possibility of naming a running mate this week.

One source tells CNN that “no decision has been made” by the candidate. Another says that some within the campaign are arguing to hold off until Obama has named his decision “so there is an opportunity to counter-program.” In any case, a campaign source adds, this does mean that the choice has been “narrowed” in McCain’s mind to the point where he could, if he were so inclined, spring a decision this week.

Campaign spokesperson Jill Hazelbaker said Monday “there will be no announcement this afternoon.”

The prospect of a McCain vice presidential announcement this week, first reported by Bob Novak on the Human Events Web site, would obviously change the subject from Barack Obama’s trip to the Middle East and Europe.

In fact, even some of McCain’s own advisers admit that just leaking the possibility of a VP selection could take some of the attention away from Obama - which could, in fact, be what the campaign is trying to do.

A senior adviser said the report is a “head fake” meant to help distract attention from Barack Obama’s headline-grabbing overseas trip.

But when pressed, this adviser said that was their public explanation because they did not want to give the impression the campaign was undisciplined: “Because someone is an idiot, so we have to explain it as a tactic.”

One GOP strategist says it would be a "mistake" to name a vice presidential pick this week. Another Republican source involved in top-level McCain campaign meetings - including senior level discussions of the VP search process - tells John King that "No. It'll be closer to the convention and after Obama picks his.”

Still this source says “everything” has been discussed, from naming a running mate early - with some talk that would have resulted in the naming of the bottom half of the ticket before now - to waiting until during the convention to give the GOP drama after the Democratic convention in Denver.

Other sources say the "leading" plan is still the one that has McCain naming his running mate after the Democratic convention - a plan that would give the campaign the time it needs to roll out a vice presidential choice in the right way. Sources in the campaign say that all options have been discussed, but that no decision has yet been made.

Ironically, the end result of the fresh round of VP speculation is that the headlines may be taking attention away from stories that would give a boost to the Arizona senator's presidential effort, including their base-stirring charge that the New York Times is biased, a renewed focus on his early advocacy of the surge and Obama's opposition, and the news that conservative Christian and long-time critic James Dobson might endorse him after all.

McCain has just added a trip to meet with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal on Wednesday, a meeting that is also guaranteed to attract press attention.


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (454 Responses)
  1. Shirl

    I am sooooooooo sick of seeing barack hussien parading all over the
    middle east spending our hard earned tax money. We do not need a
    on the job training president. obama is not ready to lead this great
    country. WAKE UP AMERICA.

    July 22, 2008 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  2. American

    Who Cares..........McBoring......zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    July 22, 2008 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  3. Linda

    Colin Powell? His name keeps popping up along with Rice’s.
    Powell was the “Salesman in Chief” of the war! How many
    pictures of him at the UN showing pictures of the ‘mobile
    chemical units’…which did NOT exist, will we see in ads
    every day if he were chosen? Powell is a good man and
    soldier but has demonstrated he spent too many years taking
    orders to have any independent thoughts to lead in ANY
    civilian role.

    And Rice?!? Give me a break. She is the biggest opportunist yet. She is supposed to be steeped in Russian expertise but we now see Russia once again flexing its muscles of control and heading in the same direction as during the 'Cold War'.

    July 22, 2008 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  4. Rust On

    I see someone's trying his best to get back in the headlines. I guess all the foolish attacks didn't work, so its time to try plan B.

    July 22, 2008 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  5. right source

    This VP announcement is McCain's camp attempt to pull attention away from Obama's trip overseas. Besides, who cares who his vp will be, he will never see the White House.

    July 22, 2008 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  6. JAMES DUCKWORTH

    AFTER ALL THE FAILURES OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY WITH IN OUR GOVT. WHY WOULD ANY ONE VOTE FOR THE REPUBLICAN CANTIDATE >>???
    AND SO FAR THE DEMORAT'S ARE A FAILURE ALSO

    July 22, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  7. Michelle

    I bet it will be Romney, who is a good choice due to his strong background in finance.

    July 22, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  8. Bobby, Triangle, VA

    John McCain, the american people and people all over the world is watching.....Your campaign is showing the signs of desperation!!! If you have so much more experience than Obama and you feel you are the better candidate to be president why are you not acting like it! Your attacks on Obama is only showing you lack the knowledge of the issues and you really do not have the experience of being truly a leader.

    If I was you I would stop talking on national television about having more experience when it comes to foreign policy than Obama, because polls overseas show you are not the person they would vote for.

    Also, Senator McCain being shot down from an airplane and becoming a POW and a RAT for the communists doesn't in anyway give you a title of "Hero" neither the experience of being a president. White americans may see you as a "Hero" but the rest of the world know better!!

    July 22, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  9. JD

    Mr. Obama has a more liberal voting record than the avowed socialist congressman from Vermont. Why can't Mr. Obama and/or his supporters just say that, yes he is a Socialist??

    July 22, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  10. Lorna, NY

    Who cares who he picks. The man is an idiot!

    July 22, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  11. Brandon

    People that call McCain "McSame" or "McBush" are foolish and ignorant. For the last decade Sen. McCain has been the blacksheep of the republican party, always differing with the majority and staying moderate on most issues.

    hmmm....... That sure sounds "McSame" doesn't it?? Hear the man out and give him a chance!

    You would be up in arms if your candidate, while riding his unicorn into the sunset, singing campfire songs while all the world holds hands, and proclaiming the the world will be at peace.... was lambasted for everything he did.......

    July 22, 2008 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  12. Jay Jones

    Actually, he did make a decision weeks ago. Then he forgot who he decided on. Then he thought he had announced it already until someone poked him in the back and reminded him he still needed to do so.

    July 22, 2008 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  13. Carl29

    I hope McSame picks Jindal or Romney. Jindal will make all the racist republicans sit this election out and Romney will certainly turn off Hispanics and crazy evangelicals.

    July 22, 2008 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  14. CMB

    Its a bluff to keep news media on McCain and off Obama overseas. EASY TO SEE A FAKE TOSS.

    July 22, 2008 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  15. Ivee

    Colin Powell? Isn't he an Obama supporter?

    Hillary in nomination. Right. Are you kidding?

    July 22, 2008 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  16. TC, Fl

    And what "success" has Obama achieved on this trip, except to get a badly needed education on foreign affairs, especially in Iraq???

    Oh yes, and great photo-ops.

    July 22, 2008 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  17. Eric in Ca

    News Flash... McCain it really doesn't matter who you choose quite honestly!

    July 22, 2008 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  18. Jeff D, South Bend, IN

    Who cares. Unless he somehow chose Barack Obama as his running mate, he's going to lose big in November. The old man is a disaster of a candidate. How do you not know Czechoslovakia no longer exists? AND THEN REPEAT THE SAME MISTAKE THE NEXT DAY? How can you not know who Iran supports in the middle east without Lieberman whispering it in his ear? How can your strategy for winning be TO SIMPLY WHINE ABOUT BARACK OBAMA?

    He sounds exactly like my senile old grandpa when we visit him on Christmas and Easter.

    July 22, 2008 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  19. Chris

    Nothing but a ploy to pull attention from Obama.
    McCain will not be making any announcement until after Obama make his.
    I really don't understand why the GOP is backing him now? I mean really he had his shot back in 2K but Bush lied and cheated on him in the primaries!!! I just don't get it with the Republicans.

    July 22, 2008 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  20. proud army and navy mom

    how are we winning the war in Iraq if we pay the sons of iraq millions each month to not attack us or our equipment? how is this success?

    How come it's not ok to talk to our enemies, but it fine to throw money at them? Who's really winning, us or the enemy. Think about it.

    July 22, 2008 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  21. Mac in Nova Scotia

    For God's sake put this guy in a nursing home.

    July 22, 2008 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  22. MD FOR OBAMA

    McCain/Lieberman(the turtle)

    LONG Yaaawwwwwwwnnnnnnn.

    July 22, 2008 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  23. bill for barack

    Is Richard Nixon coming back from the grave ?
    Is Tail Gunner Joe ?
    No one alive and in his right mind would want near this toxic individual.
    Wait ................Dubya for V.P. ?

    July 22, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  24. EBC

    WHO THE HECK CARES?? I mean really, most of us can guess who McCain's choice will be, I mean Jesus, he's only got about two probable choices. Ha! Ha!

    This story is just a ploy for more "whinning attention", that's all.

    July 22, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  25. rumpusgoopus

    Go with Angela Lansbury!

    Ah, I love McCain/Murder She Wrote jokes. Next up: Matlock.

    July 22, 2008 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
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