Back when Paul Ryan was first chosen and people were still excited about the “Young Gun,” I said that Paul Ryan would bring down the Romney ticket:
Down nine points in some polls, Mitt Romney was desperate so he made a daft move in selecting Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan to be his running mate. Historians will not look favorably upon this action and it marks the beginning of the end for Mitt Romney’s dream of becoming president. From this point forward the entire campaign will be boiled down to two items:
1) Romney’s missing tax returns and his offshore bank accounts
2) Paul Ryan’s draconian budget that will cut aid to the poor and middle class while tinkering with Medicare
It turns out my assessment was correct. According to the New York Times:
The latest New York Times/CBS News poll, conducted over the last week, found that Mr. Obama held an advantage over Mr. Romney on the question of who would do a better job of handling Medicare. That is consistent with other recent polls and is a shift from just last month, before the parties’ national conventions, when the two men were statistically tied on the issue.
In the Times/CBS poll, more than three-quarters of voters favored keeping Medicare the way it is rather than switching to a system like the one backed by Mr. Romney and Mr. Ryan. From the White House on down, Democrats are calling the Republican approach a “voucher” plan, suggesting that it borders on privatizing the system; Republicans prefer the term “premium support.”
As that poll result reflects, the Democratic message is resonating with voters like Ms. Rubin, who joined other independent and Democratic voters last week to hear Mr. Clinton make his pitch for Mr. Obama’s re-election in the packed ballroom of a resort hotel here.
“I don’t trust anybody who says ‘voucher,’ ” said Gary Fieldsend, 62, a recently retired employee at a Navy shipyard who was vacationing here with his wife Pamela, 64. The Fieldsends, from New Hampshire, another swing state, describe themselves as Democratic-leaning independents, and both said they were voting for Mr. Obama.
Nancy Pelosi just said that the selection of Ryan would help the Democrats take back the House of Representatives:
“On August 11, when Gov. Romney chose Ryan, that was the pivotal day,” Pelosi told CNN chief political correspondent Candy Crowley on “State of the Union.” “That is the day things really changed. We were on a path. I would have said to you then we were dead even. Well, the momentum is very much with us, the Medicare issue in this campaign.”
“We have been saying there are three important issues in this campaign. And in alphabetical order, they are Medicare, Medicare, Medicare,” the California representative said.
A CNN/ORC poll taken earlier this month indicated Medicare was among the top three most important economic issues for voters, after unemployment and the federal deficit.
So, Ryan’s Medicare sword hung over Romney’s head from Day 1 — and that was before we realized that Ryan was a bit truth challenged and liked to boast of Marathon times he had only achieved in his wildest dreams. Given the current situation, it appears that the Romney campaign has given up on swing voters who care about Medicare and are focusing on getting extremists out to the polls. According to BuzzFeed:
Mitt Romney’s campaign has concluded that the 2012 election will not be decided by elusive, much-targeted undecided voters — but by the motivated partisans of the Republican base…
Three Romney advisers told BuzzFeed the campaign’s top priority now is to rally conservative Republicans, in hopes that they’ll show up on Election Day, and drag their less politically-engaged friends with them. The earliest, ambiguous signal of this turn toward the party’s right was the selection of Rep. Paul Ryan as Romney’s running mate, a top Romney aide said.
“This is going to be a base election, and we need them to come out to vote,” the aide said, explaining the pick.
Given the direction of the Romney campaign, it is a very good possibility that we will see more anti-gay rhetoric in the coming weeks. We already know that Mitt will basically morph himself into whatever is required to win. There is no doubt how far he will go to reinvent himself. The question is: How low will he go?
Now that he is desperate and his dreams hang in the balance, we might just find out.