Published August 11, 2012
Is Mitt Romney’s decision to choose Rep. Paul Ryan as his running mate the GOP equivalent of a concession?
What happened to strategic political importance of Ohio, Florida and Virginia? What happened to emphasizing job growth, to voters who say that is their number one priority? What happened to appealing to independent, suburban women voters concerned about maintaining the social safety net? What happened to seniors concerned about their Medicare and Social Security?
Yes, Ryan is a brilliant young man and possibly the future of the Republican Party. But this move by the Romney camp lacks political calculation.
It will likely stir passion in the base of the party, because Ryan is a strong conservative voice who will signal to them that Romney wants to be one of them and understands the importance of conservative ideology. And that the former moderate Massachusetts governor now understands the importance of conservative ideology.
But the Republican base was already excited, due to their antagonism towards President Obama. That’s why this move may be a short-term good for Romney but lead to long-term regret.