28 Aug 2008

McCain has picked his running mate - party official

3:48 pm on 28 August 2008

Republican John McCain has made up his mind on who he will pick as his vice-presidential running mate and is likely to announce his choice on Friday, a Republican official says.

The official, who has ties to the McCain campaign, says it is unclear who McCain had selected. The choice is a closely guarded secret among McCain's top campaign lieutenants.

The McCain campaign had no comment.

Mr McCain will be in Dayton, Ohio, on Friday, the day after the Democratic national convention ends.

A Friday announcement would be aimed at blunting momentum that Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama would be expected to gain from his convention in Denver.

McCain and his aides have debated whether to pick a solidly Republican running mate such as former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who has campaigned hard for McCain after losing to him in the Republican primary fight, or go with a less traditional choice such as independent Democratic Senator Joe Lieberman, a McCain booster.

Other candidates in the mix are believed to be Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, former eBay chief executive Meg Whitman and Texas Republican Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison.