Vice President Cheney said yesterday he cannot envision any circumstance in which he would not run for a second term, saying President Bush has been "very clear he doesn't want to break up the team."
There has been persistent speculation that Cheney would step down for political or health reasons.
"He's made his decision," Cheney said of Bush. "I've made mine. I suppose right now, because we're in the run-up to the convention, people don't have much to talk about so you get speculation on that. It's normal. When we get to the convention, I think that'll put an end to it."
The vice president made his comments in a C-SPAN interview to air Sunday.
While the GOP's conservative base strongly supports Cheney, some Republicans have quietly suggested that he should be replaced. He has had four heart attacks, and his approval ratings have plummeted amid questions about his role in promoting the Iraq war and in handling the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Asked whether he could envision any circumstances in which he would step aside, Cheney told C-SPAN: "Well, no, I can't. If I thought that were appropriate, I certainly would. But he's made it very clear that he wants me to run again. The way I got here in the first place was that he persuaded me four years ago that I was the man he wanted in that post, not just as a candidate but as somebody to be part of the governing team. He's been very clear he doesn't want to break up the team."
Cheney's wife, Lynne, was emphatic that he would accept the vice presidential nomination again at the GOP convention in New York. "Oh, it'll happen," she told C-SPAN.