Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate was shocking and yet expected.

Expected because for months speculation has been swirling around the 42-year old Wisconsin congressman as a possible VP contender.

Shocking because no one thought the risk-adverse Romney would actually have the cojones to make the pick.  

But make the pick he did. And by elevating Ryan to the ticket, Romney has made the Ryan budget, known as the Roadmap for America’s Future, the central issue of the 2012 campaign.

This should be a welcome conversation for Latinos, who continue to struggle in the Obama economy.  Unemployment for Latinos remains stuck at 11 percent, and those who own small businesses are staring down a tidal wave of tax increases beginning in 2013 known as “Taxmaggedon.”

Instead of offering substantial policies to address these issues, the President has dodged the conversation altogether and instead has pandered to the Latino base with false promises, those among them being immigration reform. Instead Obama has deported more Hispanic immigrants than any other president in U.S. history.

This election will now be a clear choice about two visions. Do we believe that prosperity comes from the government or individuals and free enterprise?

Team Obama and some in the media think that you are too stupid to engage in this debate.  Instead of having an honest conversation about the challenges that face this country, they will tell you that Paul Ryan is a granny-killing radical. They will tell you that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan don’t care about the elderly or the poor. And they will say that by putting Ryan on the ticket Mitt Romney has all but conceded the presidency.  

Chicago is already celebrating. The National Journal reported that, “One Obama backer privately said -- not the least bit in jest -- that the campaign could now siphon off cash donations for margarita machines, because there was so much to celebrate between now and Election Day.”

They want you to believe this election is already over. Why?

Because they want you to forget that they don’t have a clue on how to solve our current economic problems. In a campaign that will now be defined by big ideas, Obama and his team have none. They have no plan. Nothing. Nada.

Don’t believe me? Look at this telling exchange between Ryan and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner from earlier this year. After being pressed on ways to tackle the debt, Geithner admitted, “We're not coming before you to say we have a definitive solution to our long-term problem. What we do know is we don't like yours.”

Maybe Team Obama should invest in those margarita machines because it’s going to take a lot of alcohol to make people forget about high unemployment, the exploding rate of poverty, the growing number of people on food stamps, and the staggering $15 trillion in debt we’ve amassed as a country.

Paul Ryan is one of the few people in Washington that has had the courage to speak frankly about these problems and put forth specific solutions. His budget isn’t perfect, but it’s far more than anything the President has ever offered.

Alexis Garcia is a political producer and correspondent for She also worked as a communications aide for the Giuliani and McCain-Palin 2008 presidential campaigns.

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