Washington (CNN) – If Karl Rove would have had his way – Dick Cheney would not have become vice president.
Rove explained Thursday in a CNN interview how he laid out the arguments to then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush against choosing Cheney as a running mate.
"He was set on Cheney for vice president, and I thought it was a bad idea," Rove told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King.
The interview will air Thursday at 7 p.m. ET on John King, USA.
The man often called "Bush's brain" said in the interview that will air on John King, USA, Bush called him to a meeting in the governor's mansion to allow Rove to make his case.
Rove said he then laid out his objections against Cheney.
"We didn't need to worry about, you know, the Wyoming's three electoral votes, and Cheney's voting record, and Cheney's health, and the fact he'd been Bush 41's Secretary of Defense – and we were trying to develop a separate image for 43," Rove said in the interview. "[Cheney] was a Texas oilman, like Bush was a Texas oilman, you know, you could caricature them both that way."
He added, "After about 30 or 35 minutes, [Bush] said, 'you got anything else?' I said, 'no that's about it.' And [Bush] turned to the guy next to him and said, 'Dick [Cheney], you got any questions for Karl?'"
Rove said Bush called the next day and agreed that choosing Cheney might not benefit the campaign politically. But Rove added Bush said to him, "'I'm not concerned about the politics of it. I've got to answer the question of who would be a good partner for me. And if something terrible were to happen to me, who would be a good president to step in – in my place.'"
Rove told King, "It really was [Bush's] first presidential decision, long before getting elected."