Tags: election | economy | ryan | choice

In an Election about the Economy, Ryan Rings as Strong Choice

Sunday, 12 Aug 2012 05:19 PM

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GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney boosted his chances of unseating President Barack Obama this November by picking Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan as his running mate, according to some economists and business bloggers.

Yes, Ryan's budget proposals have drawn criticism, and yes, his voting record will likely show inconsistencies with public-policy statements.

But unlike most other policymakers, Ryan will provide a clear-cut, transparent and detailed proposal to narrow deficits and make the U.S. economy competitive again, something for which most Americans are clamoring over empty campaign rhetoric, these people say.

Editor's Note: You Owe It to Yourself to Know What Obama and Bernanke Are Hiding From Americans

"He has a clear and concise plan to fix the federal budget, and as I count electoral votes, he could put the man from Massachusetts over the top in what will ultimately be a tight contest," Peter Morici, a professor at the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, wrote in a CNBC guest blog.

"The U.S. economy isn’t growing and creating enough jobs, because the private sector is despondent — demand is weak and President Obama won’t let America play to its strengths and compete globally — and the public sector is bloated — the federal government has runaway deficits exceeding $1 trillion annually," Morici added.

Ryan grabbed headlines earlier this year with a proposal to overhaul Medicare in which the government would provide money to older Americans to buy health insurance instead of paying doctors to treat Medicare beneficiaries.

Such a move is needed to narrow deficits and prevent Medicare as it operates today from throwing the country into the depths of insolvency, proponents say.

"Mr. Ryan is the principal architect of GOP proposals to fix federal finances and restore some sanity to state budgets by harnessing runaway healthcare costs," Morici wrote.

"By offering retiring Americans a choice between traditional Medicare and a subsidy to purchase private insurance, he would put Health and Human Services on the dime to cut costs without reducing benefits, and get U.S. healthcare performance more in line with competitors like Germany and Japan."

Even those who don't always agree with Ryan applaud him for his willingness to propose a plan that seeks results over popularity.

"Unlike other Congress-folk, who eagerly condemn America's budget mess but offer no specific solutions for it," Ryan had the gumption to put forth a specific proposal, Henry Blodget, co-founder, CEO and Editor-In Chief of Business Insider, wrote in a blog

"Ryan's basic premise in his budget proposal is right: If we do nothing, we're screwed. You can disagree with how Ryan proposes to solve the problem (and I very much disagree), but at least he's acknowledging the problem and offering a solution," Blodget wrote.

"The Democrats, meanwhile, and even Mitt Romney, just keep hoping you won't notice there's a problem."

Other observers agree that Romney stands a better chance of getting elected with his decision to pick Ryan as his running mate.

"He was the safest because in an election all about the U.S. economy, Ryan is the most suited among the names floated to make a strong case for removing the barriers to economic growth erected by Republican (George W. Bush) and Democratic (Barack Obama) administrations over the last 12 years," Forbes writer John Tamny wrote in a blog.

Editor's Note: You Owe It to Yourself to Know What Obama and Bernanke Are Hiding From Americans

"The Ryan choice points to a campaign that wants to make a lack of economic growth the election story, and Ryan once again is the best choice to help Romney articulate a growth message. On taxes, long before Romney crafted a national tax reform plan, Ryan was working with other growth-oriented members of the House on ways to simplify the tax code," Tamny added.

"This column for quite some time has said President Obama’s time in the White House will amount to four years, and the pick of Ryan makes that even more certain."

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