Paul Ryan? Really?
If I didn’t want to see the right lose back to back presidential elections for only the second time since I’ve been an adult, I’d feel sorry for them with the situation they’ve backed themselves into. Conservatives — like this Confederate sympathizer — appear to seriously be touting the possible selection of Paul Ryan as some kind of positive sign.
First things first, the vice presidential pick is unlikely to matter. It won’t help Romney with any needed constituencies or swing states. Even the selection of Marco Rubio (who, if he’s smart, will run away from a vice presidential vetting committee because nothing could hurt his bright future prospects more than to be associated with Mitt Romney) is unlikely to help Romney with Latino voters. Self-deportation and all.
At best, a vice presidential pick will hurt you. The selection of Sarah Palin has had the effect of making Dan Quayle looking practically statesmanlike. Palin and her disastrous roll-out so hurt McCain with swing voters, I doubt we’ll ever see a vice-presidential pick that far outside of the box in our lifetimes.
On the Democratic side, I don’t thin Biden helped or hurt Obama in the long run. The selection of Hillary Clinton would have been a wild card. She is one of the few legitimate superstars in American politics, so her case is something of an outlier. That’s just playing fantasy politics at this point, however.
Okay, so, Paul Ryan.
How does this help? Ryan won’t help Romney in Wisconsin. At best he helps a little bit with the base, nothing more. He doesn’t even really hurt that much, in my opinion. Romney has already endorsed the Ryan plan to effectively gut the social safety net, he’s going to be hit on it whether Ryan is his running mate or not.
I don’t get the media excitement over the “veepstakes,” but I understand any possible excitement over Ryan (or most of the likely candidates) even less.