Romney introduced business liberal congressman paul ryan as his "running mate" on saturday. The 42-year-old wants to reduce the high national debt through drastic budget cuts. Ryan plans deep cuts to social safety net to do so.
Romney’s choice of ryan turned the race for the woman’s house into a directional battle over the future role of government in the lives of americans, as well as over fiscal discipline, taxes and the welfare state.
Obama’s campaign camp promptly countered with accusations that team romney-ryan was blowing the whistle on social welfare and favoring the rich. Romney’s choice of ryan, a free-market radical who chairs the house budget committee, drew widespread enthusiasm from the right wing of conservatives.
U.S. Media and independent experts mostly considered the move bold and risky. The goal is to present himself to voters as a clear alternative to obama and his vice president, joe biden, on economic and budgetary issues, wrote the "new york times" and the "washington post. But the flip side is that romney, together with ryan, is moving further to the right politically, opening a flank for his opponent.
Other critics noted that ryan, like romney, was inexperienced in politics. He has never held a political post of national importance, apart from being a deputy.
At a joint campaign appearance on sunday in nooresville (north carolina), the romney-ryan duo appeared full of energy. Television commentators noted above all that romney had looked much fresher and peppier than before. In their speeches, both accused obama of running the country into the ground financially. They referred to the european debt crisis and warned of similar conditions in the u.S. "I didn’t like that we were europe," romney exclaimed. "I liked that we were america."
The ex-governor of massachusetts introduced his number two on saturday at a carefully staged campaign rally in norfolk – with the battleship "USS wisconsin" as a backdrop, named after ryan’s home state. Ryan is a man "of character and values" and an "intellectual leader," romney praised the long-serving congressman.
However, as on other occasions before, he made an embarrassing mistake. Romney introduced ryan as the "next president of the united states". Later he came back to the microphone and corrected himself.
Ryan accused obama of a "record of failure". He promised that he and romney would not back down from any tough challenges. "We will drive. We will not shift the blame onto others, we will take responsibility," said the boyish-looking ryan. "And we will not replace the principles on which we are based. We’re going to reapply it."
Ryan’s name is synonymous with a comprehensive savings plan that has caused a furor in the U.S. He wants to axe numerous social programs, such as housing subsidies, food stamps and health insurance for the elderly and needy. He plans a radical restructuring of the tax system and also wants to renew the pension system. So radical is ryan’s program in the eyes of democrats that obama once called it "social darwinism".
The president’s campaign team said over the weekend that the republican was adhering to "a flawed theory" that favors the rich at the expense of the vulnerable. In addition, as a congressman, the conservative had criticized the "reckless" economic policy of then-president george w. Bush, which has led to high national debt and a collapse of the economy.
Washington senate democratic majority leader harry reid accused romney of trying to curry favor with the right-wing populist tea party by voting for ryan. House democratic leader nancy pelosi said that for romney and ryan, millionaires are more important than the elderly, the needy and the middle class.
Ryan is married with three children. He has been in the U.S. House of representatives since 1999 and has been confirmed to office six times in a row. Romney also hopes to win election in ryan’s home state of wisconsin, experts say. There, obama’s democratic party was ahead by a rough margin four years ago.
The selection was preceded by a four-month vetting process of potential candidates. The candidates had to answer a list of 80 questions. They had to give information about possible tax offences or criminal mandates. Even the intimate sphere was not taboo. "Did you use prostitutes or did you cheat on your spouse??", were two questions according to US media reports.