Exclusive: Bob Dole considering 2016 presidential run
Bob Dole will travel to Iowa next month to test the waters on a potential 2016 presidential run.
“Don’t call it a comeback, I’ve been here for years,” the former Kansas senator and 1996 Republican presidential nominee told The Daily Caller in an exclusive interview from his Washington, D.C. condo, quoting the rap artist LL Cool J. “I may not be as active as I once was, but I’ve never hung up my political hat. I’ve just been patiently looking for the right opportunity to engage.”
At 90, Dole would be by far the oldest presidential candidate in American history. But the World War II-hero dismisses such concerns.
“Abraham lived to 175. Moses lived to 120. The way I see it, I’m just getting started,” Dole explained.
“Look, health is what matters, not age. And let me assure you I can still kick the shit out of guys like Ted Cruz — both politically and physically,” he added.
Cruz recently slammed Dole in a speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference as being an unprincipled conservative.
Dole says he was prompted to consider a run by watching a stream of “inexperienced nobodies” put their name on the list of potential 2016 contenders.
“Mike Rogers is considering a run for president? Who the fuck is Mike Rogers?” he asked incredulously.
Dole says he plans to speak at the annual Des Moines Deep Fried Stick of Butter Festival later this month, where he will meet with state party leaders and activists to gauge their interest in a Dole 2016 campaign.
“‘If you don’t want your kids to smoke a bowl, vote for Dole.’ I’m thinking that could be my slogan,” Dole mused, complaining about the national campaign to legalize marijuana.
If he ran and won the GOP nomination, Dole said he would consider someone like former Arizona Sen. Barry Goldwater as his running mate in order to appease some of the more conservative elements of the Republican base. When informed that Goldwater died over a decade and a half ago, Dole didn’t miss a beat.
“No shit?” he said. “Well, I’ll probably just go with Dick Nixon then.”