Paul Ryan is, perhaps, the best vice-presidential pick that Mitt Romney could’ve made. That’s because Congressman Ryan is one of the most articulate and consistent conservatives in Washington, who has offered bold solutions to America’s fiscal crisis. Over the past two years, while many in the Congress fiddled, Ryan stood. He proposed a budged that would balance in the near term, demolish our crushing debt and set America back on the path to prosperity. Instead of leaving Medicare and Medicaid on their current trajectory toward a fiscal cliff, Ryan’s budget ensured that Medicare would be preserved for generations to come, which is more than can be said for doing nothing. While Obama demagogues the issue, even the government’s own actuaries tell a grim tale: that Medicare is facing a multi-trillion dollar budgetary black hole that will destroy Medicare and, with it, the American economy.
Mitt Romney’s pick of Paul Ryan as his vice-president signals that his campaign has decided not to play politics-as-usual. That’s because politics-as-usual would’ve meant picking a milquetoast running mate who won’t rock the boat. Picking Ryan elevates one of the best boat-rockers in Washington to the top of the ticket. Ryan is articulate and intelligent in a way that is darn near Reaganesque; he not only understands how fiscal sanity will lead to true prosperity for all Americans, but he knows how to tell people about it an effective way. While even many of his own party were throwing him under the bus, including former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Ryan didn’t stop fighting for real fiscal reform as opposed to more tinkering around the edges.
In addition to Ryan’s commitment to fiscal reform, he is also an unabashed social conservative. As I have personally said many times, we cannot rebuild our economy without rebuilding our culture and Paul Ryan shares that philosophy. In fact, several years ago I came across and article Congressman Ryan had penned titled “The Cause of Life Can’t Be Severed from the Cause of Freedom.” In this excellent article, Ryan argues that fiscal responsibility cannot be achieved aside from a commitment to a culture of life. The core line of that article sums it up this way “How long can we sustain our commitment to freedom if we continue to deny the very foundation of freedom- life-for the most vulnerable human beings?” That’s exactly the argument I’ve made on “Common Cents” and it is a critical component of a consistently conservative message.
I now have more confidence than I ever have in the Romney campaign, because Ryan’s selection frames this entire election as a choice between what Mark Levin would call “liberty vs. tyranny.” One of the core messages from Saturday’s vice-presidential announcement is, in the words of Representative Ryan, that “our rights come from nature and from God, not from government.” This is a message that Governor Romney has also been sharing across the country, and that is incredibly encouraging. If we are ever to preserve America, we absolutely have to return to the belief that the God Who gave us life gave us liberty at the same time. If we fail to adhere to this foundation of freedom, then we will recognize the liturgy of the Left: the government gives and the government takes away, blessed be the name of the government. It is now clear that the Romney – Ryan ticket will preserve the belief that rights come from God, and that American Exceptionalism is still alive and well for all Americans.