According to the rumour mill, Romney is considering Paul Ryan as his running-mate. As regular readers will have gathered I am a confirmed ABO-ist, that is, 'Anyone But Obama', although I might make an exception if Al Gore or Joe Biden were to run! From 'over here' it is difficult to get an accurate measure of the various leading players but Ryan comes across as a stern but nuanced fiscal conservative with a well-tested doctrine with which to grapple with the looming financial disaster which is approaching the USA. However, lacking detailed knowledge I will quote again from Quin Hillyer's article in The American Spectator in which he places Paul Ryan 5th out of six choices all of whom he thinks are more or less suitable:
He would remain a superb choice. He can explain Republican budget and entitlement positions better than almost anybody out there, in terms almost anybody can understand; he knows how to attract blue-collar votes; and he might help Romney finally snatch Wisconsin for Republicans at the presidential level.
However, he worries because Ryan is a Congressman from Wisconsin. The Dems just took an almighty hit below the water-line in their ill-judged attempt to recall their State governor and currently can be described as a deflated, demoralised shambles but, he fears, the hated Ryan on the ticket would galvanise them back into action. Personally, I don't think that is enough to debar Ryan especially if he can explain to ordinary Americans the nature of the approaching tsunami and his policy to ride it out.
Even so, it is interesting to read of an attack on Ryan, well, perhaps sniper fire would be a better description, from a Congressman further to the Right. Rep. Tim Huelskamp writes in The American Spectator that he voted against Ryan's budget on the grounds that there were insufficient teeth in the tax proposals - in fact, there were no teeth at all! Huelskamp reckons that nothing can be achieved without a radical approach to taxation. I suspect that what we are seeing here is the difference between idealism and pragmatism with Ryan trying not to 'frighten the horses'.
Meanwhile, over at The American Thinker, Rick Moran is touting the possibility of Tim Pawlenty as a running-mate. From the little I know of Pawlenty's background I don't find that very convincing. He was amongst the first to drop out of the recent nomination battle and his record as governor of Minnesota is, shall we say, mixed.
It seems to me that if, as MDA (My Darling Ann [Coulter]) says, Romney is an ideal Republican candidate because the independents will not be frightened of him, then he can afford to have a fiscal conservative as his running mate. Another consideration is that the feisty, old libertarian, Ron Paul, might run as an Independent candidate and there-by steal votes from the Republican Right, so it might be useful to have Ryan as a 'wingman'!
But, hey, what do I know . . . ?