New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson said Sunday on Meet the Press that he wouldn't accept a nomination to be the Democratic vice presidential candidate in 2004.

"I love being governor. I love being in New Mexico. It's good to see you here in Washington, but as soon as I leave here, I'm heading back," Richardson said on the NBC-TV Sunday talk show.

Richardson, sworn in as governor in January, said he won't appear on the Democratic national ticket in 2004.

Host Tim Russert asked if the door to the ballot was hermetically sealed.

"It doesn't look like it's going to be open," Richardson dodged.

When Russert repeated the question, the governor said: "Yes," then laughed.

Richardson, a former U.N. ambassador, talked about negotiations with North Korea and gave his analysis of how the United States is handling the country's nuclear development.

Richardson said the North Korean leaders are "a regime that gets paranoid by the slightest provocation."

"We have an opportunity after our military victory in Iraq to conduct diplomacy on nonproliferation issues with North Korea, with Iran. I think we can have Middle East peace talks. I think we can restore the Atlantic alliance. But using diplomacy is our main tool," he said.