ROMNEY'S PRESENT, RYAN'S FUTURE
While Ryan’s effect on 2012 is as yet undetermined — it depends on the success or failure of Mediscare — there is less doubt about the meaning of Ryan’s selection for beyond 2012. He could well become the face of Republicanism for a generation. ... Ryan’s role is to make the case for a serious approach to structural problems — a hardheaded, sober-hearted conservatism that puts to shame a reactionary liberalism that, with Greece in our future, offers handouts, bromides and a 4.6 percent increase in tax rates. If Ryan does it well, win or lose in 2012, he becomes a dominant national force. Mild and moderate Mitt Romney will have shaped the conservative future for years to come.
IT'S THE CIRCUMSTANCES, STUPID
WALL STREET JOURNAL
Republicans know how meaningful this campaign became when Mr. Ryan was picked: He changed its subject matter just by showing up. And he is right in his central insight, which is his central political reason for being: America, to be strong again, must get its spending and revenues more closely aligned. It is irresponsible of the Democrats to ignore and punt and play with this great challenge. But Republicans must understand, also, that the race probably just became more of an uphill battle, because Paul Ryan has been very specific about what must and can be done. Americans will give Romney-Ryan a fair hearing, but everything has to go right now, everyone has to bring their A game.
IN THRALL TO SHELDON ADELSON
NEW YORK TIMES
Three days after Paul Ryan became the presumptive Republican vice presidential candidate, he made a pilgrimage on Tuesday to the Las Vegas gambling palace of Sheldon Adelson, the casino tycoon who is spending more than any other donor to try to send Mr. Ryan and Mitt Romney to the White House. No reporters were allowed, perhaps because the campaign didn’t want them asking uncomfortable questions about the multiple federal investigations into the company behind Mr. Adelson’s wealth. Those questions, though, aren’t going away, and neither are the ones about the judgment of Mr. Romney and Mr. Ryan in drawing ever closer to a man whose business background should lead them to back away — fast. By not repudiating Mr. Adelson’s vow to spend as much as $100 million on their behalf, the two candidates seem more eager to keep the “super PAC” dollars flowing than to preserve the integrity of their campaign.
Democrats can’t afford to let Ryan/Romney’s phony image as superior fiscal stewards survive. ... If the press is primed to cover this more intelligently, such queries will also expose the big Republican lie — the idea that you can balance the budget as the baby boomers age without taxes rising. ...The most important issue facing the country isn’t when we’re going to balance the budget. It’s how to get growth and jobs re-ignited in the near term and how to renew the country’s promise ...But if Democrats spend all their energy on Medicare — and don’t knock out the GOP ticket’s undeserved reputation for fiscal responsibility — they’ll find themselves in unexpected peril as the race heads to the fall.