One thing is for sure: Mitt Romney picked the GOP “it” boy as his running mate. The day after Romney announced that Paul Ryan would be running with him for vice president, attendance at a rally held in High Point, N.C., exceeded 10,000 people. That’s a far cry from the typical hundreds that Romney is used to seeing at his rallies.
On the heels of an international trip fraught with flubs and gaffes, it’s no secret that the Romney campaign was in dire need of a big dose of adrenaline. The question now is, will Ryan overshadow Romney? And is that what GOP tacticians are hoping for? Ryan has a star power that Romney clearly does not have. Combine his extreme budget plan, his ease with media and general comfort with the public, and Ryan is accessible to people in a way that Romney is not.
In looking at other recent presidential running mate selections, the overshadowing effect has not come into play quite like it has in this case. On the McCain-Palin ticket, Sarah Palin certainly brought star power to the campaign, but there was never a question as to who would be making the tough decisions at the end of the day. On the Obama-Biden ticket, Biden complemented Obama in areas he already excelled in, but never undermined or overshadowed the presidential authority that Obama exerted on his own.
The Romney-Ryan ticket is a totally different story. During a rally yesterday, Romney accidentally introduced Ryan as the next president of the United States. And in an interview on “60 Minutes” over the weekend, Ryan said that he and Romney would split up in the coming months to campaign separately. In that same interview, Romney emphasized what a good leader Ryan was and that if Romney is elected president, Ryan would take on a leadership role in certain policy areas. Exactly which areas are those? No one knows. What we do know is that it begs the question: Who’s really running for president?
Tonight, former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown will join Jennifer Granholm in “The War Room” to talk about what Romney’s VP pick will do to his stature as Republican nominee for president. Also, economist Dean Baker, strategist Karl Frisch, journalist Andy Kroll and pollster Celinda Lake will give you everything you need to know about Congressman Paul Ryan, from his background to how he is polling just days after Romney’s announcement.