In the first week since Paul Ryan joined Mitt Romney on the Republican ticket, something subtle yet fundamental has happened to the country--something not yet reflected in poll numbers or punditry: the mantle of leadership has shifted.
Barack Obama and Joe Biden (certainly the latter) occupy office but cannot be said to govern in any meaningful way beyond formalities. Obama avoids the media; Biden has been sent back to Delaware; and their vast auxiliary army of super PACs and community organizers is reduced to petty sniping and personal attacks. No one expects any truly new ideas or proposals to come out of the Obama campaign anymore. It is telling that the only real debate this week was between Romney and Ryan's Medicare policies, not Obama's.
The honest reflections of the more thoughtful voices on the American left confirm that Romney and Ryan are, in effect, leading the country. First there was William Saletan of Slate, who wrote--without irony: "A wonderful thing has happened for this country. Paul Ryan will be the Republican nominee for vice president." He added that Republicans like Ryan were the perfect antidote to Democratic excesses: "Maybe, like me, you were raised in a liberal household. You don’t agree with conservative ideas on social or foreign policy. But this is why God made Republicans: to force a reality check when Democrats overpromise and overspend."
That reaction found echoes in praise for Ryan offered by veteran Democrat Erskine Bowles of the president's own fiscal commission, among others. Other Democrats--notably former Virginia governor Douglas Wilder, the state's first African-American governor, and none too impressed with Biden's offensive appeals to racial resentment--began to consider crossing party lines to support the Republican ticket, even if just this once.
Eli Zaretsky, writing for the hard-left, pro-Occupy, pro-Palestinian Tikkun magazine, admitted candidly:
Now leftists are exploding with joy at Romney’s supposed mistake in choosing the easily attacked Ryan as his running mate. Perhaps leftists might reconsider their own credibility as political analysts in evaluating the Republican strategy.
Let us begin with the obvious. Obama cannot run on his record, since it is a record of failure. Therefore, he was always going to run a scare campaign, explaining how bad the Republicans are. In choosing Ryan, Romney has not made this easier for Obama — it was always easy. Rather, he showed that he is not afraid of Obama’s scare tactics, and of the Democrat’s ad hominem attacks on him — rich, unfeeling, out of touch, and all the rest.
In choosing Ryan, what Romney showed above all was courage--or, more precisely, the absence of fear. Eighty years ago, a great Democratic president comforted the nation by telling it that "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself." That comfort and confidence is what Romney and Ryan now offer Americans, while Obama ducks questions, Biden hurls bombs, and Democrat surrogates find the old weapons no longer work.
There was a telling moment, shortly after he was chosen, when Paul Ryan faced reporters on the campaign plane and said simply: "We're going to win this campaign." It was not bluster; it was simple self-assurance.
There is a long way to go on this campaign trail, and Romney and Ryan will have to fight for every vote. But now they will be tested not as candidates, but as leaders of the nation. That is what they have already won.
Cougarcat from ALABAMA says Believe
If you really believe this you probably need to go in for a drug test.
You need to see the direction of the economy from now through the election because it is really close. Romney and Ryan are weak candidates but they were the best of the Republicans. Not a decent candidate in the lot.
Ereich (126.96.36.199) from MAINE says If Obama wins he won't be able to govern
he can only rule and it won't be pretty.
Just like you last candidate a perennial loser, millard and ryan will do no better.
His choice of vp should give you an indication of his lousy decision making abilities.
Under the ryan plan millard would pay 1% in taxes. I know you boot licking subservient lap dogs like that kind of stuff. Groveling for crumbs at your masters boots.
But these two in no way represent anything but their own interest, and that of their campaign donors.
mac (Doyle McEwen) (188.8.131.52) from CALIFORNIA says Damn, MJ
Just going by your last sentence in your comments, how is the current administration any different..Simply put it isn't..
The remainder of your comments are just as inane..Comparing selections of VP's in no way proves the leadership ability of President Obama, or does it..I would have to say Romneys choice was as good if not better than that of President Obama..No doubt you believe otherwise, it would not sereve you or your chosen political party well to believe Romney made a good choice..
GITTHENET from NORTH CAROLINA says Let's see if
MJ has the nads to respond comparing VPs....
It's obvious that plugs is scenile.....
Groveling for crumbs at your masters boots? Wow, that means you still think Obama's economic plans are working...
Go ahead commie! Step out on that stupid limb, again!
Can you post the bush employment numbers for me and compare them to Obama's?
Then tell me how more of bushes economic plan is going to work out better this time around.
I'll be waiting.
RJR from MISSOURI says Major
you are really a complete idtiot. Just google yearly unemployment rate and you tell us what the rates were? And you can even leave off all the folks that have quit working for work the last 3 years and are not counted due to the POUTS playing with numbers game. It must be sad to be a moron and not realize it.
GITTHENET from NORTH CAROLINA says Unfricken believable. Tell me please, YOU'RE not that Ignorant?
I can't believe YOU'RE stupid enough to even ask to go there!
You are virtual, living, proof, that the majority of liberals visiting this board, maybe even in the party, are ignorant!
Average unemployment rate is how presidents are measured.
Copied for you from the Bureau of Labor Statistics - Proof that you should learn to read and study and be less of an idiot, commie, liberal, believing everything he hears from his liberal media....DA
2000 = 4.0
2001 = 4.7
2002 = 5.8
2003 = 6.0
2004 = 5.5
2005 = 5.1
2006 = 4.6
2007 = 4.6
Average unemployment under the Bush administration = 5.0375%
2008 = 5.8
2009 = 9.3
2010 = 9.6
2011 = 8.9
Average unemployment under the Obama administration = 8.4%
Now d@mn, you even asked to go there. Care to step out on another stupid limb, DA?
D@mn right, I want more of conservative policies! How bout you? Or are you going back under YOUR idiot rock now?