Paul Ryan has been tapped for the Vice Presidency by Mitt Romney, making him the first House member since Geraldine Ferraro to be tapped (and the first GOP House member since Barry Goldwater tapped William Miller back in 1964.
Yep. It’s done. And to tell the truth, I’m not overly shocked. For the record, back in April, I said this:
Paul Ryan: more recent speculation has popped up as he’s become the darling of the economic conservatives and Tea Party folks. Nominating Ryan would solidify the conservative base behind Romney, but he’s not going to deliver any electoral votes. Plus, I think the GOP likes him right where he is: annoying Democrats in the House. Keep him off-list unless the economy turns sharply south. Otherwise, a top 5 candidate.
And guess what? Indicators are showing that the economy is likely headed into recession next year. Then, one month ago, I put Ryan at #7 on my list (updated from the list I posted here):
7. Paul Ryan (WI)
I put this here mostly to satisfy a few conservatives who think he’s the greatest guy in the universe. And he’s a great guy. He’s also a representative, and putting him up for the Veep risks taking him out of his powerful position in Congress – and losing that position to the Democrats in a potential Obama year. Not likely.
I’m willing to eat a little crow on this one, mostly because I really like Ryan. And while I think it’s a bit of a dangerous move, it’s certainly a classic move.
- It sharply balances the ticket. Ryan is a strong, strong conservative (91.69 ACU rating) in comparison to Romney’s middle-ground stand.
- It turns this into an election that will be about the economy. Romney’s a businessman. Ryan’s an economics powerhouse. Boom – you’ve just made the election about Obama’s record as President.
- Ryan has consistently been a thorn in Obama’s shoe. He’s continued to present strong budget options in contrast to Obama’s work.
- He’s been shown to be aggressive in going after pet programs on a bipartisan stage, being willing to go after entitlement programs and the military, meaning he’s a fearless attack dog.
- Ryan is not an evangelical. He’s Catholic. By nominating a Catholic, that means that the Catholic vote may now be in play.
- Wisconsin’s may have just become a battleground state.
- By selecting a man from a farm state, it enhances Romney’s chances in Iowa, Minnesota, and Ohio. That’s critical in an election year when many farmers are struggling with the massive midwest drought.
I’ll have more commentary as time goes on. And maybe pictures.