RYAN WAS THE WRONG CHOICE
So this is how it ends.
One pasty white guy standing next to another pasty white guy in the sun of a fading Virginia summer.
Mitt Romney has chosen Paul Ryan, and has thereby chosen to lose.
The election, the country, the future.
The downside: Obama’s ruination of America will continue unfettered. The upside: We’ll have two new Fox commentators come January.
In the first and last decision of his presidency, Mitt Romney has shown that he doesn’t get it. He has incredibly chosen a running mate who does him no electoral good and who plays directly into the already-successful talking points of the Democrats.
He has decided to throw the race and he has decided not to be subtle about it.
Here’s the bottom line: Paul Ryan doesn’t bring a vote to the ticket.
Let that sink in. Mull it over a bit. Grasp what that means. In a race where the fight is for the flakes in the middle, Paul Ryan absolutely does not move the needle.
In a move that would have helped him in the Southern primaries, Mitt Romney has lost the general election.
Yes, Paul Ryan is a genius. Yes, he is one of a small handful of people who actually understand the federal budget and the existential threat its horrific imbalance poses to the United States.
And, yes, he is the darling of conservatives.
But Mitt already had the conservative vote. He was guaranteed that by the tag-team efforts of Barack Obama and John Roberts.
What Mitt needed was the un-sure vote. He needed someone who – in addition to ability – had special appeal to voters – by virtue of ethnicity or geography – who could be drawn to the ticket.
Translation: Marco Rubio, who would bring Florida and some Latinos.
Wrong answer: Paul Ryan, who will bring Eddie Munster and a state Scott Walker already moved over to our column.
Many Republicans, eager to be team players, say that Paul Ryan will show that the GOP ticket is serious about the economy.
Which shows they don’t know what they’re talking about.
Paul Ryan knows the federal budget, which is not the same thing as the economy. They both involve money, but they’re not the same thing. Early morning Republican bloggers may not realize that, but voters do.
If Republicans are going to keep saying that this election is about jobs – even though it’s not – Paul Ryan is not really a jobs guy.
He is a budget guy.
And, incredibly, by his choice, Mitt Romney has ended the congressional career of the only guy with the brains and the guts to say what needs to be said about the budget.
Having Paul Ryan’s knowledge and intellect guide the restructuring of the federal budget in a Romney administration is a good idea. To do that, you make him Treasury secretary, or director of the budget, or create some czar position.
Almost never has a vice president been selected on the basis of some specialized skill which he would use in the administration. That’s what cabinet secretaries are for.
Let’s review: The Ryan choice brings no electoral benefit to the Republican ticket.
What’s worse: The Ryan choice plays directly into the Democrats’ strategy for victory.
Every Democrat in the country is carping the same three talking points: Republicans want to cut Medicare, squeeze the middle class and give tax breaks to the rich.
The Democrat poster boy for all three of those things is Paul Ryan.
And Mitt Romney has given the Democrats Paul Ryan as an issue.
The Democrat strategy is dishonest. It is distortive and stupid. It is meant to herd simple people like sheep.
And it is working.
On the back of this bull-crap message, Barack Obama has opened up his biggest lead of the campaign. It is a strategy of deception, but it is a working strategy.
And Mitt Romney has played directly into it. The Democrats have invested a year in making Paul Ryan’s last name a cuss word in American politics, and Mitt Romney has made sure that that Democrat investment doesn’t go to waste.
We have agreed to argue their issue, and that is almost never a smart move.
Neither is passing up an opportunity to reach out to the new defining demographic of American society – the various peoples and cultures called Latino. At issue – not just for this election but for the future of American society – is whether Latinos will be defined as an underclass minority or as a successful part of the mainstream.
The Democratic Party offers Latinos what it has given blacks – welfare slavery in exchange for monolithic political support. The Republican Party offers Latinos what they really need – integration into the prosperity and productivity.
This choice doesn’t do anything to extend that invitation.
And it doesn’t do anything to win this election.
Which means it doesn’t do anything to save this country.
- by Bob Lonsberry © 2012