(Host) Congressman Peter Welch says the United States needs a vice president who can work with Congress.
Welch says he hopes Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama picks a running mate who would develop strong ties with the House and Senate.
Obama is expected to announce his selection in the next few days.
A number of people are thought to be finalists for the position, including Delaware Senator Joe Biden, Indiana Senator Evan Bayh, Virginia Governor Tim Kaine and New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson.
Welch says Obama’s choice will reveal some important qualities about his party’s presidential nominee.
(Welch) “Whoever he picks is going to reflect a judgment that he makes about how he wants to be president and what he thinks the challenges are. It will be extremely helpful if we have a vice president, similar, frankly to the first George Bush when he was vice president, or Walter Mondale, who had a capacity to work with Congress and both sides of the aisle to help us come together and make some progress."
(Host) Many political observers believe Obama will choose a candidate who can help the Democrats win a specific state. Welch thinks that approach is outdated.
(Welch) “I think, frankly, the days of trying to target your nominee to help you with a particular state almost ended in the ‘60s with JFK and LBJ. The elections are so much more nationalized and so many of the factors that might help you in a state apply not just to that individual state but across the country."
(Host) Welch says that he doesn’t have a favorite vice presidential candidate and he says he has no inside information concerning who the candidate will be.