Carney: 'It'll be awesome' if Cruz, Paul run

White House press secretary Jay Carney joked Friday that it would be “awesome” if Sens. Rand PaulRand PaulTea Party chief on McConnellCare: Amend it or kill it Rand Paul on refusing to use a handicap when golfing with Trump: 'I don't take any welfare' Paul: ‘I get the sense we’re still at an impasse’ on healthcare MORE (R-Ky.) and Ted CruzTed CruzTea Party chief on McConnellCare: Amend it or kill it Paul: ‘I get the sense we’re still at an impasse’ on healthcare Koch-backed group launches new ads on tax reform MORE (R-Texas) ran for president in 2016.

“I think they all ought to run,” Carney said. “It'll be awesome.”

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Carney made the quip as he was looking to deflect questions about whether President Obama would choose sides in a hypothetical Democratic showdown between Vice President Biden and former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonCNN has earned its spot on the griddle House Dems ask DOJ watchdog to investigate Sessions's role in Comey firing Grassley: Why hasn't acting FBI chief recused himself on Flynn? MORE.

“I'm not going to get into 2016,” Carney said. “Unless you want to — we could talk about the Republicans. That's pretty interesting.”

The questions about Biden and Clinton came on the heels of revelations that Obama's campaign team secretly weighed replacing Biden with Clinton on the 2012 ticket.

According to Double Down, an upcoming book by journalists Mark Halperin and John Heilemann, then-White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley, spooked by the president’s dropping poll numbers in fall of 2011, ordered campaign staffers to poll and focus-group the impact of a switch.

Carney dismissed the report, saying there was no serious discussion of dropping Biden from the ticket.

He also said Obama believed Biden would be a strong president.

“I think the president picked Joe BidenJoe BidenAmazon primed for merger battle Delaware pool where Biden worked as lifeguard named after him The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE as his running mate for the right reason, which is that, if necessary, Vice President Biden could be president,” Carney said. “That's, I think, the first item on your checklist when you're picking your running mate.”