Sunday, August 12, 2012

UK: Romney takes political gamble in chosing radically conservative congressman

The Telegraph

US Election: Paul Ryan announced as Mitt Romney's running mate

Mitt Romney has taken a rare political gamble in an attempt to change the direction of the US presidential campaign, unveiling Paul Ryan, a radically conservative young congressman, as his running mate. 

By ,

By instead picking the doe-eyed darling of the anti-government Tea Party movement, Mr Romney will excite the Republican "base" and ease Right-wing fears that he may not live up to his fiscally conservative rhetoric.
A staunchly anti-abortion Roman Catholic, Mr Ryan should also reassure evangelical Christians and other "pro-lifers" concerned by Mr Romney's moderate stance on the issue when running for Massachusetts governor in 1994, and by his Mormon faith. Ralph Reed, the head of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, said he was an "inspired, outstanding selection".

Yet it also threatens to scare moderate voters in swing states, whose ballots will decide November's poll, by tying Mr Romney to Mr Ryan's unapologetically detailed plans for painful austerity measures.

He wants to overhaul Medicare, the health service for elderly Americans, replacing it with a subsidised voucher system. Opinion polls suggest that this is opposed by a vast majority of voters. Florida, a key swing state that Mr Romney probably needs to win, contains millions of retirees and ageing voters.

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