by Rick Grimaldi – 8/13/12 –
About a month ago I was at a a fundraiser for Representative Jim Gerlach. While there I met a congressman who introduced himself to me as Paul. No last name-just Paul. He, of course did not have to tell me his last name. I was quite familiar with Paul Ryan. I had been impressed with his approach to budgetary issues and spending cuts. More importantly I was/am impressed with his passion. He takes positions based upon his beliefs; makes a reasoned case for those positions; and, is unafraid to compromise and work in a bi-partisan fashion, much like Ronald Reagan, without compromising those core beliefs, to achieve a result for the greater good. Further, he believes that politics should be about the big issues that determine the course of events in our country. We need this.
Kudos to Mitt for making a bold selection. By selecting Paul Ryan he has proven that his rhetoric about this election as a defining moment is real. He also has made a good political choice that helps him with conservatives. Ryan has bona fide political and policy “chops.” He was congressional aid, and a speech writer for Jack Kemp (one of the architects of the Reagan tax cuts). He understands economics and is not afraid to take an unpopular position if he believes it in the best interest of the country. Also at the age of forty two, he is a generation younger than Romney. I believe it will help with younger voters. At that same fundraiser Ryan gave the keynote speech. It was equal parts inspiration and policy. It was the right message and the right mix. As we were leaving the reception, a friend, who is a significant political player in our region, turned to me and said “it would be great if we could get this guy on all the college campuses.” I agree.
As I write this I am awaiting the official announcement of the selection. Romney has selected Ryan over number of well qualified individuals including Minnesota’s Tim Pawlenty and Marco Rubio, who might have helped deliver Florida and the Latino vote. Nonetheless, the Ryan choice is the bolder selection and the one which I believe will galvanize voters and provide America with clear choice. Now more than ever that is what we need.