By the College Republicans
Almost four years ago, on Aug. 29, 2008, John McCain named his choice for vice president: Sarah Palin. Palin had been governor of Alaska for less than two years prior to her selection to join John McCain on the Republican ticket for president. Palin was selected to be a “game changer,” and that is exactly what she became. Yes, Palin rallied the Republican base, but simultaneously pushed moderates towards now President Barack Obama. Her lack of experience and general perception has been recognized as a major reason for the failure of the Republican bid in 2008.
Four years later, that choice still hangs over the Republican Party, but the presumptive Republican nominee for president, Mitt Romney, has been given the opportunity to reestablish the qualities of a Republican vice president by selecting an educated, experienced and well-vetted candidate to join him. On Aug. 11, 2012, Romney did just that by selecting Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin. Congressman Ryan, a father of three, has served in the United States House of Representatives since 1999. He quickly made a name for himself as a “budget wiz,” climbing the rigid leadership structure in the House to become the youngest chair of the House Budget Committee in history.
Democrats will undoubtedly attempt to define Ryan as a radical conservative who does not have a serious vision for the future, but that could not be further from the truth. Congressman Ryan is responsible for one of the few passed budgets in either house of Congress. Ryan’s budget has also received bipartisan support in the Senate through the Congressman’s work with Democratic Senator Rob Wyden. His budget proposal reins in spending, reforms inefficient entitlement programs and simplifies the complex American tax system. Under Ryan’s “path to prosperity” roughly $16 trillion in U.S. debt disappears by 2030, more than $700 billion is returned to Medicare through the repeal of Obamacare and social security is reformed to ensure the program’s solvency for future generations. As the Democrats go on the offensive against the Ryan budget they should be reminded that the Congressman’s budget passed the house and was narrowly defeated in the Senate while President Obama’s proposed budget failed in the Senate by a shocking 99-0 vote.
Republicans have not been the only ones speaking of Ryan’s incredible résumé and understanding of our nation’s financial crisis. Former chief of staff to President Bill Clinton and co-chair of President Obama’s Deficit Commission, Erskin Bowles is among those praising the congressman’s efforts. In a recent public appearance at the University of North Carolina, Mr. Bowles called Ryan’s budget “a sensible, straightforward and serious budget.” He goes on in his speech to define Ryan using words such as “honest,” “amazing” and “sincere.” I doubt we will see this characterization in the President’s ads through November.
Mitt Romney made a bold choice, the perfect choice. Paul Ryan understands the problems we face as a nation, and he has a serious plan to solve them. In the coming months we should all look forward to hearing from the ticket that truly represents “hope and change”: Romney/Ryan.