August 11, 2012 Leave a comment
I’m going to try something a little different this time. Instead of reading everybody else’s take on Ryan and deciding what I like best, I’m just going to start with my own based on what I’ve already read. A few things…
1) Wow– Romney really feels he’s got to do what the conservative base wants. The fact that he still does not feel he’s got the base wrapped up (well, this should do it) does not speak particularly well of the state of his campaign. Not a confident pick. Also, a House member to be Vice President? At least give me Governor of Alaska.
2) Do not underestimate Ryan’s skills as a politician. He’s a very skilled politician. He’s totally pulled the wool over the eyes of most political journalists who think he’s this smart, reasonable, wonky-numbers guy. In reality, he’s about as conservative as they get (hello– he claims Ayn Rand as his primary political influence) but manages to pass it off as moderate and reasonable behind the facility with numbers, Midwestern demeanor, and dreamy blue eyes. Will be interesting to see how successfully Democrats are able to push back against/change the fairly ingrained positive opinion Ryan has among the journalist/pundit class.
3) Honestly, though, the man is untested on this kind of stage. Will be genuinely interesting to see how it goes. I do think he’s up to the task and will do a solid job. He strikes me as a skilled and smart politician. That said, don’t be surprised if he has more than his share of gaffes.
5) Yeah, this is always exciting stuff. But I think the odds that this selection changes the results of the presidential election is exceedingly rare (among other things, I doubt that he actually makes much difference in Wisconsin, being only a House member).
6) More later. After I’ve read all the smarter people’s takes.