Rep. King: 'I'm not going to say no' to presidential suggestions
May 18th, 2011
03:07 PM ET
11 years ago

Rep. King: 'I'm not going to say no' to presidential suggestions

Washington (CNN) – Rep. Peter King's name has not previously come up as a possible presidential candidate. But could he soon enter the race?

"I'm not going to say no," the New York congressman told CNN in a telephone interview on Wednesday.

King is the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee. Next week, he'll hold hearings on how the death of Osama bin Laden impacts homeland security. In March, King held hearings on the radicalization of Muslim Americans.

The Long Island Republican explained the origins behind the notion of a possible presidential bid. King said that on Tuesday night – at a dinner for the Nassau County Republican Committee – chairman Joseph Mondello said he'd be supportive if he ran for president. King said that pledge of support followed similar sentiments expressed by others a few weeks ago.

King emphatically said he's "focusing entirely on re-election to Congress," and added that presently, "I'm not forming any exploratory committee. I'm not going to New Hampshire. I'm not going to Iowa."

And yet, King did not close the door on the idea of running.

"What happens, happens," he said. "I'm not going to say no," King said, referring to any efforts from the Nassau GOP group aimed at getting him to run.

Meanwhile, King took aim at a man who is running for president.

King lashed out at former House speaker Newt Gingrich's harsh criticisms of Rep. Paul Ryan's budget plan – comments that Gingrich has now apologized for.

"It's a little too late," King said. "It was his own ego that made him say it in the first place. Newt cannot talk about things except in apocalyptic terms."

Accusing Gingrich of not being able "to share the spotlight with anyone," King added, "Newt was being the Republican Barack Obama, in attacking Paul Ryan. To me, it's unforgivable."

And King said he is not buying Gingrich's apology.

"All of us make mistakes. This was Newt Gingrich overreaching, exaggerating and attacking one of the most well-liked people in the Republican Party."

- CNN's Rebecca Stewart contributed to this report

–Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @ShanTravisCNN

Filed under: 2012 • Peter King
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. sister2

    come on, does anyone seriously want this idiot for president?

    May 18, 2011 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  2. pierce

    King is king of the name callers. And he's against freedom of religion. Yes, a good GOP presidential contender. LOL

    May 18, 2011 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  3. Republican Robber Baron

    Exploiting fear and xenophobia of different races/cultures is NEVER out of style with the Republican Party. Just ask Rudy, Newt, Fox News – Facts Don't Matter – and friends.

    May 18, 2011 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  4. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Don't say no Mr. King, just get lost, he's an old fart.

    May 18, 2011 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  5. Shawn

    Wow, is being delusional now a prerequisite for being a Republican? This is the weakest and most pathetic presidential field in decades. Obama will win in a landsldie.

    May 18, 2011 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  6. nate

    Excellent, it's just keeps getting better.

    May 18, 2011 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  7. Glenn from Cary

    And you won't be saying "yes" either, King. Because nobody is going to ask you.

    May 18, 2011 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  8. The Real Tom Paine

    Wonderful, an IRA supporter and apologist for president. If he gets in, we really would have someone who actually has "palled around with terrorists".

    May 18, 2011 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  9. StrategicBob

    If you won't say No, Representative King, please let me say it for you. No! to any thought of Representative Peter King for any higher elective office.

    May 18, 2011 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  10. 100% ETH

    What a joke!
    We need the candidates to land in the Moon!!!

    E..hhh?! No candidates at all, except One HERO!

    Nowadays, talk shows are the booming Business with Recession(Mr. Beater) free.

    May 18, 2011 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  11. Al-NY,NY

    He wouldn't even win NY state

    May 18, 2011 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  12. Rudy NYC

    Rep. King is not Tea Party compatible. He has been known to compromise and work with Democrats.

    Look at the debt limit debate. The Tea Party wants "politics of the impossible", which means they never compromise. You either do it their way or it doesn't get done at all. A really strange way to run a democracy if you ask me.

    May 18, 2011 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  13. V in Chicago

    Isn't this the same guy who wants to waste taxpayers money and time by holding hearing on Bin Laden's death? He's dead and he should be. End of hearing!. See how much time and expense you can save when common sense takes over.
    This guy is just another blow-heart that wants his name in the news. The Republican are offering quite a circus for us this time. Some, even making Palin look mundane. Crazy, but mundane. Hold on folks, it's going to get interesting when they all start tearing each other apart, only to learn in the end that none of them can come close to beating President Obama. Who will, by the way, be relected in 2012!!

    May 18, 2011 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  14. Rudy NYC

    "All of us make mistakes. This was Newt Gingrich overreaching, exaggerating and attacking one of the most well-liked people in the Republican Party."
    The comment reveals an interesting philosophy. I would not call it working together as a team, where mistakes are made, corrected, and you move on as a team. It shows an omnipotent, controlling mindset, which they wish to impart on everyone.

    "Why can't we all just get along." A statement like that is heresy; punishable by death.

    May 18, 2011 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  15. jersvette

    Look up the word delusional in the dictionary and his picture will soon be next to it.

    May 18, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  16. vet in texas

    Peter King the sports writer has a better chance at becoming president than this Peter King

    May 18, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  17. Steve, New York City

    With respect to his mentality, Rep King is just a "hair" smarter than the cast of Jersey shore.

    Maybe Snooki can be his running mate?

    May 18, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  18. GI Joe

    Save your money – we've watched your petty ways too long already. Time for NY to get rid of you and put an adult in your spot.

    May 18, 2011 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  19. FactCheck

    Yeah, good luck with that. You're not even going to win your own district.

    May 18, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  20. thomas

    Rep. Peter King , " tough Guy " , did he go to the John Gotti school of acting ? Another paper puncher GOP that loves kiddy comities , investigations to nowhere on the tax payers expense !
    CNN , great photo of Dan Lungren on the left , an other obstructionist dinosaur !

    May 18, 2011 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  21. vic , nashville ,tn

    Rep. Peter King please run

    May 18, 2011 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  22. Haren

    I will not vote for a person who thinks water boarding get us Bin Laden.

    May 18, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  23. Kenneth the VI of Minneapolis

    I believe George W. Bush said it best when he said you are either with us or against us. The REPUBLICAN elites have spoken, and Newt you might as well call it quits......or here is the perfect storm for Newt to emerge as a sensible Republican and stick to his guns and take back the Republican Party from the Tea Party.

    May 18, 2011 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA...King? Running for POTUS? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA...for reals? Too funny. Seriously. You almost got me to believe this wasn't just make-news from the "oh crap we have to fill up 24 hours of air time" department. Good try tho.

    May 18, 2011 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  25. Joe

    ROFL that's just what the Republican's need, another extremist asshat running for President.

    May 18, 2011 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
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