Of all the current Republican politicians who can lay claim to the legacy of former President Ronald Reagan, vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan has the strongest tie, says former White House correspondent Keith Koffler.
“Bearing, like Reagan, a specific plan of action for difficult times, Ryan may be just the man to ride his conservatism straight into the West Wing,” Koffler writes on Politico
. “Because Ryan is the king of the Reagan babies. The one that most resembles dad.”
The other “Reagan babies” include former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, and freshman Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., Koffler says.
They “show clear signs of lineage to the Gipper in their remarks and their writings,” he states. “But Ryan imbibed Reaganism like mother’s milk.”
The Ryan family enthusiastically discussed Reagan’s policies at the dinner table, according to The New York Times. And Ryan was forced to practice Reagan’s fabled theme of self-reliance upon the death of his father when the future congressman was only 16.
Ryan, just like Reagan, is well steeped in classic conservative authors such as Friedrich Hayek, John Locke and Ayn Rand, Koffler says.
While Ryan lacks Reagan’s experience, “the House Budget Committee chairman does have a grasp of detail and numbers that Reagan could not match,” Koffler writes. “Ryan also exudes the Midwestern sunniness Reagan could project, while harboring the same capacity to respond sharply when challenged.”
And in perhaps his most important similarity to Reagan, “Ryan stands implacably for something — something that, as with Reagan in 1980, is an alternative to the dismal state of affairs the country finds itself,” Koffler maintains.
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