RACHEL MADDOW: Did I miss some sort of Sherman-esque statement from you about never running for president? Obviously youâ€™re involved not only in Missouri issues, not only in federal issues, youâ€™re interested in whatâ€™s going on with the Democratic [Party] more broadly and the Senate more broadly. Why shouldnâ€™t I be asking you if youâ€™re running for president?
SEN. CLAIRE McCASKILL (D-MO): You know, itâ€™s just kind of an awkward, awful question.
MADDOW: If I were you, I would be running.
MADDOW: As the most centrist senator in the Senate, the way that youâ€™ve run in Missouri. The issues that you have been interested in. The way that youâ€™ve stepped into stuff that you didnâ€™t have to get involved in because you thought leadership was needed there. Americaâ€™s definitely ready for a woman nominee. If I were you, Iâ€™d be running. Why arenâ€™t you running?
McCASKILL: I donâ€™t know, sometimes people think me stepping in is more of a bull in a china shop, maybe? I donâ€™t know.
MADDOW: Weâ€™re not a china shop, weâ€™re America!
McCASKILL: Iâ€™m passionate and Iâ€™m not afraid to take a fight where I think it needs to be taken, but I also know what the process is, and besides all that, Iâ€™m all in for the first woman president, Hillary Rodham Clinton. So I want to be supporting her every way I know how. I think sheâ€™ll be a terrific president and I canâ€™t wait to say, â€śMadam Presidentâ€ť to Hillary Rodham Clinton.
MADDOW: She has not declared that sheâ€™s running.
MADDOW: If she doesnâ€™t run, would you consider running?
McCASKILL: Probably not. I think that Iâ€™ve seen up close what those things look like, and I think I can do a lot of good in other ways to serve the state I live in and the country I love. But I think itâ€™s a hypothetical that we wonâ€™t have to talk about because, Iâ€™ll tell you what, if somebody wants to â€śbetchaâ€ť on whether or not Hillary Clinton is a candidate for president, Iâ€™d take the bet.
MADDOW: All right, I can see how uncomfortable this makes you. I will tell you, if I had to pick one Democrat who I thought could definitely win a race for president, it would be you. Thatâ€™s in part because youâ€™re considerably more conservative than I am, but I think you could win if you ever wanted to run. Anyway, Iâ€™ll just leave it there.
Thank you Senator Claire McCaskill, I appreciate you being here.
McCASKILL: Thank you.