Mitt Romney names Paul Ryan as his running mate


U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis.

Aimee Burch

Likely Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney announced Saturday that U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan from Wisconsin’s First District will be his running mate in the general election.

Speaking to a crowd gathered in Norfolk, Va., Romney said Ryan’s leadership “begins with character and values,” outlining Ryan’s early life in Wisconsin. Romney called Ryan a “person of great steadiness, whose integrity is unquestioned and whose word is good.”

In his opening remarks atop the U.S.S. Wisconsin, Romney outlined the various goals of a Romney/Ryan administration. He touched on topics such as strengthening the middle class and protecting Medicare and Social Security. Romney praised Paul’s record of public life, saying Paul has become a leader of the GOP who understands the fiscal challenges facing the country while maintaining a sense of optimism for the future.

“He doesn’t demonize his opponents. He understands that honorable people can have honest differences,” Romney said. “There are a lot of people in the other party who may disagree with Paul Ryan. I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t respect his character and judgement.”

After mistakenly being introduced to the crowd by Romney as the “next President of the United States,” Ryan took the the podium.

“I am deeply honored and excited to join you as your running mate,” Ryan said to Romney as the crowd cheered.

Ryan praised Romney’s leadership skills, saying he has the background and character needed to lead the country through a challenging time.

“Following four years of failed leadership, the hopes of our country which have inspired the world are growing dim,” Ryan said. “They need someone to revive them. Gov. Romney is the man for this moment.”

Ryan spoke about his time growing up in Janesville, Wis., and how representing his constituents has shaped his views of the problems confronting the country. He said the lessons his late father taught him of being part of a solution and leaving his children’s generation better than the previous one are those that guide him in his public life.

“It is our duty to save the American dream for our children and theirs,” Ryan said. “I believe there is no person in America who is better prepared because of his [Romney’s] experience, because of the principles he holds, and because of his achievements and excellence in so many different arenas to lead America at this point in our history.”

Jabs at the Democratic opponent President Barack Obama were an overarching theme of Ryan’s remarks. Ryan said that while Obama did inherit difficult circumstances, he did nothing to get the country out of debt and high deficits.

“President Obama — and too many like him in Washington — have refused to make difficult decisions because they’re more worried about their next election than they are about the next generation,” Ryan said. “We might have been able to get away with that before, but not now. We’re in a different and dangerous moment. We’re running out of time and we can’t afford four more years of this. Politicians from both parties have made empty promises which will soon become broken promises with painful consequences if we fail to act now.”

Ryan told the crowd he and Romney would take this necessary steps to get the country back on the right track, saying that his congressional record will help him a great deal in complementing Romney’s experiences in the private and executive sectors.

“I’ve worked closely with Republicans, as well as Democrats, to advance an agenda of economic growth, fiscal discipline and job creation,” said Ryan.

Ryan closed his speech with a series of promises from himself and Romney.

“The commitment Mitt Romney and I make to you is this: We won’t duck the tough issues. We will lead. We won’t blame others. We will take responsibility. And we won’t replace our founding principles. We will reapply them.”