Nunn: (1) On White House bid: "It's a possibility, not a probability;" (2) The only certainty is that he won't be anybody's candidate for V.P.
[Since] Sam Nunn left the U.S. Senate more than 10 years ago, [he] . . . has watched what's happened to the country, and he's more than a bit ticked — at the "fiasco" in Iraq, a federal budget spinning out of control, the lack of an honest energy policy, and a presidential contest that, he says, seems designed to thwart serious discussion of the looming crises.
"My own thinking is, it may be a time for the country to say, 'Timeout. The two-party system has served us well, historically, but it's not serving us now.'"
Nunn said he's not likely to make up his mind [about a White House bid] until next year, probably after the early rush of presidential primaries have produced de facto nominees for both parties. He said the decision will depend largely on what he hears from the current candidates.
Political debate has been captured by the extreme wings of both parties, he said, ignoring solutions that can only be found in the middle.
"I do not see tough calls willing to be made by the body politic," he said.
Nunn singled out the debate over energy and global warming. Those most concerned with global warming won't consider nuclear energy as an alternative, he said. Those who advocate energy independence ignore the fact that there is "no analysis whatsoever that could lead you to believe we're going to be independent in this country on energy," Nunn said. "We'll have interdependence and security in energy, but people aren't talking about that."
But if Nunn does decide to enter the race, Iraq, terrorism and the increasingly strained state of the U.S. military will also have their place as major motivations.
Though he has said little publicly, his frustration over Iraq . . . can barely be contained. "A fiasco, which we've basically mishandled in all directions. We'll get over it, because we're a strong country, and we're indispensable in the sense that we're the [world] leader. But right now, it's going to take at least 10 years to rebuild U.S. credibility."
Nor has the Bush administration been able to create the necessary climate to make it easy for the world's Muslim population to isolate jihadist terrorists, Nunn said.
"We're in a race between cooperation and catastrophe. And to get cooperation you have to have a vision, and you have to listen. And we're not perceived as having a vision in this country, and we're not perceived as listening."
The question is whether the American center — or what's left of it — shares his frustration.
From the Rome News-Tribune:
THIS NEWSPAPER hereby endorses Sam Nunn for president of the United States, thus probably becoming the first daily in the nation to commit to anybody.
NOTED FOR HIS bipartisan approach, as well has his expertise in military/defense matters, he has constantly been speculated upon as a secretary of defense, secretary of state, vice presidential candidate and even presidential contender.
[I]t is apparently his irritation at the current Washington atmosphere of partisanship, rather than cooperative efforts to make the nation better, that have fueled his new, tentative interest.
That is an irritation this newspaper shares. Partisan government, no matter which party governs, has become noted for being all talk and no action — or claimed action with no results or follow-through.
Realistically, while Nunn would annihilate any opponent in a formal debate what is still more likely to catch the public eye in a presidential bid is a Ross Perot with pointer and quips. A candidate like Nunn would be a PBS-style personality in a Fox News era, a Shakespearean actor trying to gain applause from an audience of Paris Hiltons.