Over the weekend the pick of Paul Ryan as Vice President to the Romney ticket looked exactly like what the doctor ordered. A few days later… Not so much.
The more details about the horrifying Ryan Budget Plan seep out into mainstream consciousness the more the ryan VP pick looks to be terribly flawed.
A USA TODAY/Gallup Poll found that Ryan scored the lowest initial ratings from Americans of any vice presidential pick since the controversial choice of Dan Quayle nearly a quarter-century ago.
In addition 39% of registered voters call Republican contender Mitt Romney's selection of Ryan "excellent" or "pretty good" while 45% rate it as "only fair" or "poor." Sixteen percent have no opinion.
Those numbers are worse than the initial reactions to both Dick Cheney in 2000 and Sarah Palin in 2008!!!
An ABC News/Washington Post poll has found that only 38 percent responded favorably to Ryan joining the Republican ticket, up from 23 percent in pre-selection interviews last week.
To top it off according to Gallup a clear majority, 58 percent, of Americans has never even heard of Paul Ryan.
Right wing talking heads have also seemed to be lamenting about how poor the Ryan VP pick is.
According to Politico.com in more than three dozen interviews with Republican strategists and campaign operatives — old hands and rising next-generation conservatives alike — the most common reactions to Ryan ranged from gnawing apprehension to hair-on-fire anger that Romney has practically ceded the election. In addition the more pessimistic strategists don’t even feign good cheer: They think the Ryan pick is a disaster for the GOP.
Here are a few quotes I've gleaned from around the nets:
Former President George W. Bush senior adviser Mark McKinnon. “I think it’s a very bold choice. And an exciting and interesting pick. It’s going to elevate the campaign into a debate over big ideas. It means Romney-Ryan can run on principles and provide some real direction and vision for the Republican Party. And probably lose. Maybe big,”
One Republican operative involved in 2012 races said: “This is the day the music died,” He continued by saying that every House candidate now is racing to get ahead of this issue (The Ryan Budget)".
Another strategist emailed midway through Romney and Ryan’s first joint event Saturday: “The good news is that this ticket now has a vision. The bad news is that vision is basically just a chart of numbers used to justify policies that are extremely unpopular.”
A Republican strategist who works on congressional races said: “There are a lot races that are close to the line we're not going to win now because they're going to battle out who's going to kill grandma first, ObamaCare or Paul Ryan's budget,”… “It could put the Senate out of reach. In the House it puts a bunch of races in play that would have otherwise been safe. ... It remains to be seen how much damage this causes, but my first blush is this is not good.”
Former Rep. Tom Reynolds (R-N.Y.), who chaired the NRCC from 2003-2006, warned: “You saw what happened to Bush with Social Security in the 2006 election,” he said. “This is déjà vu.”
A GOP consultant said: “Whether or not they [the Romney campaign] want to say that they have their own plan on Day One, or whatever they’re doing, it doesn’t change the reality of them having to own the Ryan plan. How is that in the wheelhouse of creating jobs?”
A GOP consultant joked that: “The most popular phrase in Washington right now is: ‘I love Paul Ryan, but …’” The same strategist continued: “This could be the defining moment of the campaign. If they win the battle to define Medicare, then I believe Romney wins the presidency. If they lose it, then they lose big in the fall,”
One operative who professed himself a Ryan fan said.: “He just doesn’t seem like he can step into the job on Day One,”.
The honeymoon is definitely over.