ABC News’ Nancy Flores Reports: Bill Richardson finessed the Veep question Thursday following a major foreign policy speech at Georgetown University in which he excoriated his Democratic presidential rivals.
At a Q & A following his speech, Richardson was put on the spot when a student asked if he would accept the VP post if one of the other Democratic presidential candidates offered the position to him.
"You criticize the Iraq policy of Senators Obama and Clinton pretty heavily, but if one of them should win the nomination and not you, and would offer you the vice president post, would you accept it?" asked the Georgetown alum.
"I am pointing out policy differences, I haven’t said anything negative about any candidate," said Richardson, answering the first part of the student’s question but avoiding the VP part.
"When they say they are going to end the war but leave half of the troops behind, I think that is a little inconsistent," he said. "I’m trying to point out policy differences, I’m not being critical."
After a back and forth on his differences with his Democratic rivals, Richardson answered the second part of the question with a firm "I’m going to win this nomination," followed by laughter and applause.
In an effort to set himself apart, Richardson pointed out the differences between his policy on Iraq and that of top Democratic presidential candidates in his speech.
"Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards have said we have to wait and see how things go to know how many troops they bring out and how quickly. I say there has been enough waiting and seeing. If you haven’t seen enough to know that we need to get all the troops out then you aren’t watching the same war that I and the rest of America are seeing," said Richardson.
Richardson, governor of New Mexico, is the only Democratic presidential candidate that has called for a total troop withdrawal from Iraq without the presence of any residual forces and has differentiated himself from other candidates by stating that he is the only major candidate who will actually end the war.