Ryan-palooza

Read lots of good stuff about Paul Ryan today worth mentioning.

1)First, Chait made the right call before it actually happened:

In any case, the conservative drumbeat for Ryan has grown so overwhelming that it’s no longer even clear that Romney could turn Ryan down for anIncredibly Boring White Guy, even if he wants to. The Republican Party belongs to Ryan.

2) Ryan Lizza, who just wrote the great profile of Ryan:

Romney’s choice of Ryan will undoubtedly be criticized as capitulation to the right, and this pick does seem to demonstrate that Romney is not able or willing to distance himself from the base of his party. But the good thing about the Ryan pick is that the Presidential campaign will instantly turn into a very clear choice between two distinct ideologies that genuinely reflect the core beliefs of the two parties. And in that sense, Romney’s choice of Paul Ryan is good news for voters.

3) A lot of interesting thoughts from Nate Cohn, who discusses the matter as a Romney rebranding:

After suffering relentless attacks on Bain Capital, outsourcing, and taxes, the Romney campaign needed a vice presidential selection capable of jumpstarting a thorough rebranding effort heading into the convention. There is no question that Ryan is a bold enough pick to give Romney the theme his candidacy needs, but it is far from clear whether the Ryan brand will serve Romney well. It is probably telling that both Democrats and Republicans think that Ryan was a great pick for their chances, but history suggests that it’s not wise to stand on the side of fundamental reforms to entitlement programs. It’s possible to envision how Ryan could ultimately prove an asset, but my presumption is that the Ryan plan hinders Romney’s chances until proven otherwise.

4) Great piece by Jon Cohn on 5 things you should know about Ryan.  If you are a committed Democrat, you should definitely read it.  One of em:

5. Ryan really does want the biggest transfer of wealth, from poor and middle class to rich, in modern U.S. history.

5) And, oh my, Michael Grunwald wrote this over a year ago (and re-linked to it today), but its pretty much the best thing on Paul Ryan and the media’s love for him that I’ve ever read:

I just don’t understand what’s so brave about fuzzy math in the service of Tea Party ideology. Ryan’s plan certainly could become unpopular, but only if people realize what’s actually in it. And he certainly isn’t bragging about the elements that could alienate the public. For example, his plan would presumably require tax hikes on the middle class in order to achieve its stated goals of keeping revenue levels steady while slashing rates for high earners and corporations. But Ryan doesn’t get into those details. To the extent that identifying specific and immediate cuts is politically courageous, House Republicans deserve far more credit for their insistence on slicing $61 billion in spending out of the current budget — at the risk of a government shutdown — than for Ryan’s vague pledges about the distant future.

More to come, I’m sure.  These are a great start.

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About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

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