Romney names possible running mate
November 22nd, 2011
01:18 PM ET
8 years ago

Romney names possible running mate

(CNN) - GOP presidential front-runner Mitt Romney on Monday dropped a name for a possible running mate should he secure his party's nomination.

"There are probably 15 names of people, including (New Hampshire Sen.) Kelly Ayotte," Romney said in an interview on Fox News. "I mean, there are terrific Republicans in the Senate, in the House, in governors' offices."

Programming note: GOP presidential candidates face off at 8 p.m. ET Tuesday, November 22, in the CNN Republican National Security Debate in Washington, D.C.

Ayotte, who was sitting next to Romney at the time of the interview, threw her support behind Romney this weekend in a highly coveted endorsement.

The first-term senator was elected in 2010 with 60% of the vote and is seen as a strong conservative on issues of finance and defense. A former state attorney general, Ayotte voted against the debt deal hammered out in Congress this summer.

Asked who she thinks Romney should consider for vice president, Ayotte pointed to names already floating around in GOP circles: Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell.

She also pointed to Gov. Susana Martinez of New Mexico as a strong candidate.

While Romney has been criticized from the right for being too moderate, Ayotte said her main focus was electing a Republican who could oust President Barack Obama from the White House.

"(Romney) is the person who can lead our country, change the direction, bring those conservative principles that we need to the White House and most importantly make sure that Barack Obama is a one-term president," Ayotte said in the interview.

The former Massachusetts governor has remained steady in the top tier of the GOP presidential field, but a new CNN/ORC International Poll this week showed Romney falling slightly behind former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

And while Romney was hesitant to list any more possible VP contenders, the candidate said there's no short list of potential names.

"You've got extraordinary men and women," Romney said. "We have a very deep bench."

- CNN's Rachel Streitfeld contributed to this report.

Also see:

Cain signs anti-abortion pledge

Cain, Paul crossed off for Iowa group's pres. endorsement

Who can make a difference in New Hampshire?

Bachmann's big upset prediction

Filed under: 2012 • 2012 VP Pick • Kelly Ayotte • Mitt Romney • New Hampshire
soundoff (218 Responses)
  1. ThinkAgain

    "No kidding. Funny though, you'll hear "Ronald Reagan" this that and the other thing though."

    What's REALLY funny is Ronald Reagan wouldn't be allowed in the Repub party today, what with his tax raising (11 times during his presidency), negotiating with terrorists (the Ayatollah Kohmeni, to be exact), cutting and running after the Beirut barracks bombing, not wearing his faith on his sleeve and trying to "out-Christian" everyone else, the growth in federal jobs during his terms (over 60,000; contrast that to government payrolls shrinking by 373,000 during Clinton’s presidency), and the pesky little FACT that the national debt went from $700 billion to $3 trillion, and the U.S. transformed from the world’s largest international creditor to its largest debtor.

    And don't forget Reagan while governor expanded Medi-Cal (California's Medicaid). He also established the Air Resources Board to intervene in the market and fight smog (so much for deregulation and letting the market "correct itself").

    Speaking of the environment, Reagan, that tree-hugger, signed more wilderness-protections laws than any president before or since.

    All you gun nuts: Reagan was a staunch backer of the Brady Bill, urging Congress in 1991 to pass it "without delay."

    Last but not least, all you teabaggers, Reagan passed the Immigration Reform and Control Act in 1986, which eventually granted amnesty to 2.7 million illegal immigrants. The kicker: he continued to speak out for immigration rights after leaving office.

    Reagan wouldn't pass the Repubs "purity" tests – but that won't stop all these GOP yahoo candidates from invoking St. Reagan's name. Guess they just all figure their base are a bunch of idiots.

    November 22, 2011 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  2. JohnM


    Mitt Romney 2012!!! Time to put intelligence, competence, and ethics in our White House again!! It is time to make our economy and country number one again!!

    November 22, 2011 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
    Sue first you list a moron then you turn it into an oxymoron. That's funny stuff, thanks for the laugh!

    November 22, 2011 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  3. pete

    I really hope people wake up to why the media is blacking out Ron Paul. If you looked at
    his 30 year record you would find a man who has NEVER swayed from his political
    positions, he's NEVER taken donations from banks, corporations or lobbyists, he's fought
    for our soldiers when they wanted to revoke benefits from them. He's fought for
    transparancy of the Federal Reserve, which is just a group of bankers who print money out
    of thin air that creates inflation, create interest rates that radically screw with the
    market. He's the only canidate that has actually served the military and that's why he's
    the most supported by our miltary men and woman!!! He's not bought like the rest of them.

    November 22, 2011 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  4. David

    if romney is pick for republican, i have a feeling that he will get christie as his vp.

    November 22, 2011 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  5. steve

    A deep bench maybe, but certainly no starters.

    November 22, 2011 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  6. larry

    Everything Mitt Romney does is aimed towards winning and not fixing the country. Meanwhile everything Ron Paul does is aimed at fixing the country. Can everyone please wake up already!

    November 22, 2011 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  7. socalgal

    WOW-sure wish you lefties would apply the same scrutiny to your own as you do the Republicans. One thing I'll tell you, though, sure wish the current flunkie in chief had been vetted 1/1000th of the level that the Republicans are being vetted now. We wouldn't be having this conversation now.

    November 22, 2011 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  8. NoTags

    Willard better concentrate on winning the nomination before he starts selecting his VP running mate.

    November 22, 2011 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  9. Four and The Door

    @ Four and the door: maybe it's called INCENTIVE you know, so our veterans who are having such a hard time to get a job after defending the good US of A. Common knowledge is not hard to come by.
    Tact, I agree with you 100% that it is an incentive and I am not saying I disagree with the legislation. But his rallying cry about businesses and billionaires not paying enough taxes are because of all of the government incentives in our tax code. If he wants to scream about it then either he should reform it ( for which he blew his best chance with the supercommittee offers on the table ) or he should not add more mess to the tax code. He looks confused this way.

    November 22, 2011 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  10. Four and The Door

    ...The better statement would have been to question WHY businesses needed the extra "tax break" boost to be coaxed into considering hiring of our veterans in the first place.
    Lynda, for once I agree with you. I don't think this bill will convince anyone one way or the other. But for the businesses who understand it is good to hire veterans they get a big tax break. Is this really helpful? Maybe politically it gets his picture with a pen on a few newspapers looking like he's helping veterans. I doubt he really is. And the debt goes up.

    November 22, 2011 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  11. ThinkAgain

    Nail on the Head Award goes to Lynda/Minnesota who stated:

    "The better statement would have been to question WHY businesses needed the extra "tax break" boost to be coaxed into considering hiring of our veterans in the first place."

    November 22, 2011 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  12. chuck

    You would think he would learn from Cains nighmare....By the way is Palin returning all the campaign donations she swindeld out of her fans since she KNEW LAST SUMMER SHE WASN'T RUNNING according to blabbermouth Brystol. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm funny how Palins they fell out of the spotlight. Lawyer anyone????

    November 22, 2011 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  13. The Real Tom Paine

    FIELD1stSGT, what makes you think that Mittens is the One? Put aside your blatant hatred of the President, and ask yourself if a one-term failure as a governor of the state that ranked 46th in the country in job creation is qualified to run the country when its fighting its way out of a recession that was created by the very policies you support? By the way, what army did you serve in? The wanna-bees, or the Waffen SS?

    November 22, 2011 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  14. Mr.M

    I hope he dosn't pick another Sarah Palin.

    November 22, 2011 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  15. Fielding Mellish

    Mitt's campaign will likely implode, just like his father's in 1968. George was the front runner too.

    November 22, 2011 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  16. Leslie

    AHH!!! Don't they make a cute couple?!!! What a joke!!!!

    November 22, 2011 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  17. John B

    Well now that stupid story about how much her "endorsement" means makes more sense. Why do I feel that voting Republican this term is a losing battle?

    November 22, 2011 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  18. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Excellent post Think Again, and quite true!

    November 22, 2011 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  19. Dominican mama 4 Obama


    "I suppose Natalie that your idea of dedication to values is Obama? Ironic. On the same day the Supercommittee bailed out because they could not get the $1 trillion tax increase he begged for he signed a bill to give tax breaks to businesses for hiring veterans. These are tax breaks for the same filthy rich business owners he complains get too many tax breaks. He has a tough time staying on-message, doesn't he?"

    NOBODY asked for an immediate $1T tax increase. Rather, short-term spending measures and tax relief followed by long-term revenue and tax increases is what has been called for. Of course, give that you have an overly simple mind, I am not suprised to find your oversimplifying it in a very poor attempt at selling the perception of hypocrisy.
    The hinges just fell off of Four's door Sniffit!!

    November 22, 2011 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  20. carlos

    There are probably 15 names of people, including (New Hampshire Sen.) Kelly Ayotte," Romney said in an interview on Fox News. "I mean, there are terrific Republicans in the Senate, in the House, in governors' offices."

    So the repugnants could pick one of those, but they are so smart they got stuck with those clowns now.

    November 22, 2011 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  21. Asturiano

    If you have to rely on a small state Senator next to the state where you served as governor, then your campaign is in trouble.

    November 22, 2011 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  22. Eric

    The entire purpose to slipping that line in was because his campaign thought that it'd generate extra publicity for her endorsement of him, provided that journalists weren't quick-witted enough to realize how cynically he's playing them.

    Way to do your part, CNN.

    November 22, 2011 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  23. Iconoclast

    Would love to sit in on Romney's VP strategy meeting. "let's see who we can pick that qualifies as cheaply transparent tokenism". Kind of like McCain, but I'll bet it will be even dumber. The shallow picking the shallower.

    November 22, 2011 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  24. JMM

    Anyone who thinks Paul Ryan would be a good choice belongs in the nut house, not the White House.

    November 22, 2011 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  25. qubee

    This has the makings of the upcoming sequel of McCain/Palin ".........ok everybody, quiet on the set: lights, camera, IN-ACTION"

    November 22, 2011 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
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