The Other Guy
Rep. Paul Ryan may be the Republican Vice Presidential candidate, but how much does this young, potential VP really know about foreign policy?
As US Republican Presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, made a slip of the tongue and accidentally introduced his pick for running mate, Paul Ryan as the “next of the United States” one is left wondering, what if that were really to be true?
A fiscal conservative, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin is indeed Romney’s pick for “Vice President” and is in many ways a bold move on Romney’s part. Mitt Romney opted to adopt a more moderate stance throughout his presidential trail after being chosen as the Republican nominee, attracting a slew of criticism from the more conservative Republicans and of course the very vocal, Tea Party, both of whom have wished to see a more bold, critical and revolutionary Romney. Though serving as an initial lukewarm candidate, Romney sharpened his criticism and made some big moves as the presidential race heated up. As criticisms against the Obama camp fly high, Ryan will serve as Romney’s card in quieting down any doubts that may arise within the Republican Party regarding Romney’s interest in toeing the party line. The young and outspoken 42 year old will certainly appeal to the more
By Arsla Jawaid conservative Republicans as well as many younger voters.
Romney’s decision to choose Ryan as his running mate is no small step, given the reputation Ryan has carved for himself in Washington, DC. A Miami University graduate, where he studied economics and political science, at the young age of 28, Ryan was elected to Congress to represent Wisconsin’s 1st district. Focusing on the budget, he became increasingly popular with fiscal conservatives and cultivated a reputation as a ‘number cruncher.’ Meticulous, critical and persistent, Ryan has faced heated criticism from the Democratic Party repeatedly, yet has unwaveringly stood his ground defending his policies and in return, gaining the respect of even those who oppose him.
Ryan’s severely criticized budget proposal that calls for controversial changes in Medicare and other safety net projects to get the fiscal house in order, is what ultimately brought him from obscurity straight into the hot seat. Serving as chairman of the House Budget Committee since 2011, Ryan can recite the minutest details of the U.S budget at the drop of a hat and is ever ready to launch a verbal at- tack against President Obama, his healthcare bill and any other of his domestic or foreign policy decisions. It is perhaps this ferocity and complete loyalty to bring the other side down that has earned Ryan immense respect and support from the Republican Party.
But this campaign should not be about what Barack Obama and the Democratic Party cannot do. The campaign trail should instead be focused on what Romney-Ryan 2012 can give to the United States? As one-half of the equation, Ryan unfortunately may prove to be Romney’s fatal drug.
While the 42-year-old Wisconsin congressman may conveniently quote the wrong points on domestic issues facing the US, one wonders if he can afford to make that mistake during a foreign policy debate. Ironically, both Ryan and Romney have very limited foreign policy exposure or experience, much like Sarah Palin who nonetheless had John McCain to rescue her.
With only a month to go before Election Day and with both candidates running neck and neck, the Obama camp has pulled out all stops with former President Clinton and first lady Michelle Obama