Cheney Won’t Run for President, Not Even if Begged
Cheney Won’t Run for President, Not Even if Begged (CNN-Reuters)
Vice President Dick Cheney on Sunday categorically ruled out a run for the White House in 2008, even if asked by the Republican president who recruited him back into government. “I will say just as hard as I possibly know how to say … ‘If nominated, I will not run,’ ‘If elected, I will not serve,’ or not only no, but ‘Hell no,”‘ Cheney told “Fox News Sunday,” making clear he intends to retire from politics at the end of his current term. “… I’ve got my plans laid out. I’m going to serve this president for the next four years, and then I’m out of here.”
The 64-year-old Cheney came back from the lucrative life of a corporate chief to be President Bush’s running mate despite a history of heart trouble, including a fourth heart attack shortly after the contested presidential election in November 2000. But he said even Bush could not persuade him to change the decision he made 10 years ago not to seek the presidency. “I didn’t want to do those things I’d have to do,” Cheney said, adding that it had made his current job much easier to be freed from personal political ambition. “I think primarily that’s because I’m not worried about what the precinct committeemen in Ottumwa, Iowa, are going to think about me in January of ’08,” he said of one of the states where the U.S. presidential process gets underway.
And he noted that by 2009 he would be 68. “I’ve still got a lot of rivers I’d like to fish and time I’d like to spend with my grandkids, and so this is my last tour. I don’t plan to run for anything,” Cheney said.
No huge surprise, of course. Cheney would be a terrific prime minister but he doesn’t have the temperament to make a serious presidential run. He’s too candid and insufficiently hail fellow well met to survive the rigors of the campaign trail. And, frankly, who needs the aggravation?