Mitt Romney has made a bold choice by choosing Paul Ryan as his running mate. People will argue whether it’s a good choice. But it basically will energize conservatives. The Tea Party loves Ryan. He’s the most substantive of all the House members.
This choice gives the Republican Party someone who will go out and give us what the Republican plan will be for our economy, whether Romney wins or not. He was the architect of it.
He gives Romney the opportunity to go after young voters on fiscal issues. Saturday’s announcement will make this a substantive campaign for the next couple of weeks. This is a guy who is not going to make mistakes. He knows the substance of the debate over our economic future better than anyone else.
He is the Jack Kemp of this generation. Kemp was the great creative architect of the Reagan tax cuts. He has the opportunity to do what Reagan didn’t do. Reagan had the opportunity to pick Kemp, which he didn’t do.
Ryan clearly is the conservative thought leader in the House today. The Democrats will go ahead and attack Ryan for the next two weeks, but I counter that he will get Romney up to speed. My sense is this has been a very thoughtful plan. Now, it’s got to be sold. It certainly creates a contrast with Obama. Now there is a way to challenge Obama on the fiscal deficits and health care.
There will be no backshooting from Republicans over this choice. And it also brings along two elements: He’s a Catholic. He can go out and take up some of the fight. He also has the ability to appeal to young people. They are disillusioned about Medicare and Social Security. He may be able to bring some of them along.
This choice also puts the state of Wisconsin in play, a state which we’ve not won since 1984. Romney clearly has a chance there now.
Edward J. Rollins is a Fox News contributor. He is a former assistant to President Reagan and he managed his reelection campaign. He is a senior presidential fellow at Hofstra University and a member of the Political Consultants Hall of Fame. He is Senior Advisor for Teneo Strategy.