Former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice reportedly turned down an offer from the Trump campaign to be the presumptive Republican nominee’s vice-presidential running mate. Sources told CNN reporters Dana Bash and Elise LaBott that Donald Trump’s team had “reached out to Condi Rice in [the] last few days,” Ms Bash tweeted, adding that Dr Rice “had no interest” in the role.
Dr Rice served as National Security Adviser and later as Secretary of State in the George W Bush administration. She left office in 2009 and is presently a political science professor at Stanford University in California. Her spokesman said last month that she was “not interested in being vice president,” adding: “She's happy at Stanford and plans to stay.”
Dr Rice was also named as a potential running mate for Mitt Romney in 2012, and spoke at that year’s Republican National Convention. Like Mr Romney and several other GOP grandess, she is thought not to be attending this year’s convention, which begins on 18 July and is expected to nominate Mr Trump as the party’s 2016 candidate.
Adding a black woman to the ticket would have been a coup for Mr Trump, who is polling at zero per cent among black voters in the key swing states of Pennsylvania and Ohio, according to two new NBC/Wall Street Journal polls. National surveys also show Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee, enjoying overwhelming support among women.
Mr Trump’s vice-presidential short-list, however, is thought to have been whittled down to three middle-aged white men: Indiana Governor Mike Pence, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. Mr Pence, currently running for re-election in Indiana, met with Mr Trump and several of his family members at his Indiana home on Wednesday.
Mr Gingrich, who staged an unsuccessful bid for the Republican nomination in 2012, was let go this week as a contributor by Fox News, which cited his vice-presidential prospects as a potential conflict of interest. He and Mr Christie also travelled to Indiana on Wednesday to meet with the Trump family in a final round of Apprentice-like interviews, NBC News reported.
Mr Trump is expected to announce his running mate on Friday, before they are confirmed at next week’s convention in Cleveland.
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