Editor's note: part of this commentary is taken from an interview with Fox News contributor Karl Rove that aired on Fox News Channel with Bret Baier on Saturday, August 11.
If this election is about little choices, its outcome is uncertain. If the election is about big things, Republicans are more likely to win. By picking Paul Ryan as his running mate, Mitt Romney signaled his belief that the race is about big ideas -- putting America's fiscal house in order and renewing prosperity by cutting the deficit, reforming the tax code and saving the social safety net.
Vice presidential picks often say more about the presidential candidate than the VP candidate. That's the case today. Romney’s choice will help focus the race on real issues and make it harder for Barack Obama to engage in distractions.
When picking his running mate, Romney could decide to be bold or comfortable, focus on politics or governing. By choosing bold and governing, he signaled his campaign is about a robust and attractive reform conservatism.
Democrats will jump on this pick. Witness their television ad last fall in which a Ryan-like character pushed grandma over the cliff.
This is a mistake. Seniors are deeply concerned about the deficit. Ryan will be able to patiently explain the commonsense plan to restrain spending that he and Romney advocate.
Barack Obama has no plan to ever balance the budget and instead increases spending dramatically in the years ahead.
Ryan will be able to make this point powerfully to the American people. He’s done it at home. While Bill Clinton (twice), Al Gore, and Obama carried his district, Ryan has consistently won with mid- to high-60s since his first race.
Ryan is a stellar addition to a ticket that gives optimism and confidence to the nation and victory to the GOP.
Karl Rove joined Fox News Channel as a political contributor in February 2008. He also currently serves as a columnist for the Wall Street Journal. Mr. Rove helped organize the political-action committee American Crossroads. His latest book is "The Triumph of William McKinley: Why the Election of 1896 Still Matters" (Simon & Schuster, 2015). Follow him on Twitter @KarlRove.