Tags: | fund | schoen | gop | convention

GOP Convention a Critical Moment for Romney-Ryan

Wednesday, 22 Aug 2012 04:40 PM

By Henry J. Reske and Ken Chandler

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The Republican National Convention is a crucial moment for the Mitt Romney-Paul Ryan ticket to introduce themselves to the voting public and articulate their vision for America, Democratic political analyst Doug Schoen and political writer and commentator John Fund tell Newsmax.TV.

The convention, to be held in Tampa, Fla., beginning August 27, is a key moment for the GOP ticket to reach undecided voters and break the polling deadlock that has had the team running virtually even with President Barack Obama for weeks.

Watch the exclusive video here.


“This convention is absolutely critical for Gov. Romney and for his running mate, Paul Ryan,” Schoen said. “So far, the Republicans have yet to articulate a vision for America. They’ve not spoken compellingly to the issue of jobs, economic growth, economic empowerment and, most of all, optimism.

Urgent: Does Paul Ryan Really Help Defeat Obama? Vote in Exclusive Poll

“Bottom line, this fight about Medicare, which so many on the right have taken pleasure in, is not a good thing for the Republicans. It’s a Democratic issue. But whether it’s good or bad what the American people want to hear about, and I’d be curious what my good friend, John Fund, thinks, is jobs, the economy, most of all the future. So far, the Republicans have been largely silent.”

Fund, a columnist for National Review magazine, called the convention an “absolutely vital” opportunity to reach those who have spent the summer “preoccupied with family activities.”

“The people in the middle, if they tune into this convention, it will be the first exposure to Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan’s ideas,” he said.

Fund added that the public will mostly tune in en masse just for the major convention speeches by Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.

“That will be the first time Mitt Romney can make his pitch to the American people, uninterrupted,” he said. “Then, of course, we have the debates. Those will be very important. But the conventions are very important as framing mechanisms for the arguments for the fall campaign. And I agree with you. Mitt Romney is going to have to address Medicare, having picked Paul Ryan. But Mitt Romney will also be able to point to the worsening economic numbers. Every month, things get a little worse.”

Whether the convention is a success will be determined by the polls.

“There are two metrics: first is are they able to articulate a compelling message or vision as I suggested before,” Schoen said. “But there’s a larger and, frankly, simpler metric and that’s the polls. Bottom line, the Republicans need to get a five to 10 point bounce out of the convention. Why do I say that? Because almost certainly Obama and the Democrats will get a similar bounce themselves.

Urgent: Does Paul Ryan Really Help Defeat Obama? Vote in Exclusive Poll

“I fully expect the Republicans and the Democrats will basically cancel each other out and will go into this election tied as we are today. But the Republicans can’t take the risk of not getting that bounce because Barack Obama, whatever you may think of him, is one of the most compelling orators in American political history.”

On other topics:
  • Schoen said one of the speakers to watch for at the GOP convention was Texas Senate nominee Ted Cruz. “The reason I say Ted Cruz is he is a Tea Party candidate. He is Hispanic. He is extremely well educated, probably the most compelling new figure in the Republican Party today. … I think it’s entirely possible that Ted Cruz could steal the convention.”
  • Fund said reports that Vice President Joe Biden might be replaced on the ticket by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are not likely. “One is it’s not in her interest to, shall we say, join a ticket which might lose, which would hurt her chances for 2016. She already has enough name identification. She’s already the front runner if she chooses to run in 2016. And secondly, Barack Obama would think carefully about making Hillary Clinton a vice-presidential candidate. He might need a food taster for four years.”
  • Fund said that “voter mobilization now is going to be very interesting because until Paul Ryan, conservatives were not terribly enthusiastic about Mitt Romney and obviously Barack Obama is having trouble replicating the enthusiasm level, including the minority communities that he had in 2008.”

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