Roanoke, Va. - Republican vice presidential pick Paul Ryan slammed President Obama for his "You didn't that" comment Wednesday, making a campaign stop just ten minutes down the street from where the president made the GOP-parodied remark in July.
"He said last summer was going to be the summer of recovery," Ryan said. "It's a summer later and it's still worse. He said that the private sector is doing just fine, we need more government. This is President Obama's imaginary recovery. It's not here."
In a reflection of how important Virginia plays into the Republican roadmap to winning the White House, Ryan was holding his fourth day of events in the swing state just twelve days into his candidacy.
Ryan was introduced onstage by Chris McMurray, the owner of Crumb and Get it Bakery, who -- the campaign was quick to note -- made local headlines after declining a visit from Vice President Joe Biden, citing the president's remarks as reason to refuse the request.
Romney's running mate continued to hammer the message that the administration's assessments of the economy haven't aligned the country's sluggish growth. In summer of 2010, President Obama and Vice President Biden embarked on a "Recovery Summer" tour, a series of stops which then White House senior adviser David Axelrod said would underscore how this summer would be "the most active Recovery Act season yet." This June, President told reporters the "private sector is doing just fine" but would later walk back his comments, saying "it's absolutely clear that the economy is not doing fine." All of this proved to be fodder for Ryan's argument.
"We've got 23 million people out of work, struggling to find work today, unemployment has been above 8 percent for 42 months, and the real unemployment rate is more like 15 percent," he said, arguing that
On the stump, Ryan also talked extensively about reforming the tax code, which fits into a larger attack the candidate has been painting of government cronyism, which he and Romney are vowing to combat.
"What has happened over the years because of both political parties, Republicans and Democrats alike, have put in so many interest group loopholes, have been picking winners and losers through government regulations, through government spending, and through the tax code," said Ryan. "We gotta clean that mess up. We need a tax system that's fair, simple and competitive. When you, when you plug these loopholes, that means the person making the same kind of income pays the same kind of tax, period, end of story. Make it clear."