Romney’s choice of Ryan will mean real shootout in this campaign
by Don McKee
August 13, 2012 12:52 AM | 1143 views | 6 6 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Don McKee
Don McKee
Mitt Romney’s choice of Congressman Paul Ryan as running mate is supposed to energize the conservative base of the Republican Party.

It certainly energized Romney who followed up his announcement Saturday by speaking with more passion than I can remember him showing. Clearly, the two men like each other; they are on the same page and enjoy campaigning together, firing up the crowds and being fired up by them.

Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell set the stage for the crowd at Norfolk when he said of President Obama’s failure to right the economy, promote job creation and cut the national debt: “If you walk into an employer and you’ve got that kind of record, there’s only two words that come to mind: you’re fired!” The polls reflect Obama’s problem: his disapproval rate – 50 percent in Gallup’s poll and 54 percent in Rasmussen’s.

Romney’s selection of Ryan was seen as a bold move that sets up a clear choice for voters. The New York Times said: “The decision instantly made the campaign seem bigger and more consequential, with the size and role of the federal government squarely at the center of the debate …. For Mr. Romney, the decision is one of the boldest moves of his presidential candidacy, which has been guided by a do-no-harm strategy. It promised to energize conservatives….”

The Washington Post said: “A Romney-Ryan ticket will help to clarify the choices for voters in November. Rarely have the two parties presented such a stark contrast in visions as now appears to be the case. Those competing visions could produce, after a summer of often small-minded tactics, the kind of big debate about the country’s future that both Obama and Romney have said this campaign should be about.”

The Washington Times: “Mitt Romney has proved everyone wrong. The common wisdom was the presumptive Republican nominee for president was going to make a safe pick, going with an old Washington hand from an important swing state for vice president. By tapping 42-year-old Rep. Paul Ryan from Wisconsin, Mr. Romney shows that he is taking the fight into blue states deep in the heart of territory Barak Obama won four years ago. This is the strategy of a winner.” The Times added: “Choosing Mr. Ryan….telegraphs one message about the autumn campaign loud and clear to President Obama: it is about the economy stupid, and you won’t be able to hide from the issues.”

The biggest challenge for the GOP ticket will be explaining Ryan’s budget plan that would change Medicare a decade in the future. It would not affect anyone 55 or older but in 2022 people turning 65 would go on a voucher system with an estimated $15,000 a year to help buy health insurance from private insurers instead of relying on Medicare. Medicaid would be converted into federal grants to states for indigent health care. That triggers the old “Medi-scare” tactics.

Ryan said in Norfolk, “We won’t duck tough issues.”

This presidential campaign is going to be a real shootout.
Comments-icon Post a Comment
Kevin Foley
August 14, 2012
Yes, Don, and the "clear choice" for voters is give the 1% control of the government along with massive tax breaks while increasing taxes on the middle class and poor...

...or vote for the 99% and your own best interests.
August 13, 2012
I admit I agree with you. I won't be voting for Romney, but I'm glad he chose Ryan, i think its Good For The Country.

Health care costs are now at 18% of GDP and increasing at %8 a year. The resultant increases in medicare and medicaid outlays are breaking us. The veterans administration is having the same problem.

No matter where you are in the political soup, the rate of increase in health care costs is what's breaking our budget, and we have to do something about it.

Ryan being the VP nominee will pretty much force a debate over our health care cost problem.

Personally, I'm for a single payer European style, which is not popular in this region. But that's beside the point, which is that this policy debate will be Good For The Country. And if we are lucky we'll force our two parties and their pay for play congress into a solid resolution.
August 13, 2012
Don. Thought provoking article.

Tell ALL Details
August 13, 2012
Being someone under 55, I want to know if the $15,000 is guaranteed to cover the cost of the health insurance and if we are guaranteed a number of reputable insurance companies will be available from which to choose. If so, will this be guaranteed by law? Otherwise, this plan is absolutely NO good.

Will the insurance cover 70%, 80%, what? With Medicare now, it covers 80% and you buy a private policy to cover the 2O%. What will Seniors have to do, buy ANOTHER policy to cover the extra percentage? If so, how will this be guaranteed ALWAYS?

Why can't EVERYONE in the U.S. just be on the health plan, which federal employees are on now? It is in place in ALL 50 states already. Prices come down in health insurance when many, many people band together to buy as a group. With the U.S. divided into districts with the federal employees' plan logic tells me that would give the best price. If an international corporation with 175,000 employees in the U.S. still pays $1100 every month for an employee's health insurance (and the employee pays part of the $1100), then how can a LONE senior negoiate a price any better with $15,000? How?

Oh and don't forget, dental and vision are not included in Medicare. Dental needs to be covered in any plan, because untreated teeth, lead to major medical problems all over the body in seniors. This is a proven medical fact and I have seen this first hand.

ALL these questions and more need to be answered before I buy into the Ryan plan.
@tell all
August 13, 2012
Good questions--but-- there always is a but-

A "guarantee" of the $15,000 is not as important as an assurance that whatever the average cost of a fair plan is each year that the premium plan will stay with it.

I too would like to know if it is standard 80% coverage.

As to negotiating price,. the group price is based on the actuarial calculation of the statistics of the group. I would expect that people over 65 are subject to more serious illnesses and would have higher premiums. We need information on that.

Otherwise I believe the concept to be very sound if coupled with an "any insurance company can sell in any state" plan.

I would suggest an addition--which may be there already--my income coupled with my wife's retirement income is a little bit better than the median. Perhaps raising the deductible based on means would help also. I hate to pay it, but it seems that if a retired couple is making , say, $10,000 over the median , it would be affordable to have a $200 deductible instead of $167. At this writing, I do not have an estimate for how that would help the plan.

--but we are all in this together and I believe Obamacare will put too heavy a burden on us.

PS This should be for Americans only. There is no law to stop illegal entrants to our company from buying an insurance plan o their own.
*We welcome your comments on the stories and issues of the day and seek to provide a forum for the community to voice opinions. All comments are subject to moderator approval before being made visible on the website but are not edited. The use of profanity, obscene and vulgar language, hate speech, and racial slurs is strictly prohibited. Advertisements, promotions, and spam will also be rejected. Please read our terms of service for full guides