Under The Mountain Bunker.)
For a while now the president has been trying to define Willard Mitt Romney (aka Wall Street Willie) as an unethical businessman who would happily toss his fellow Americans under a bus to earn a few more dollars -- a vulture capitalist who cared for no one but his rich friends. And it's working. The American people are beginning to see the truth.
A new CNN/ORC International Poll shows that 48% of the public now have a negative opinion of Romney (and that jumps to 52% among Independents). Also, 64% of all Americans (and 68% of Independents) believe Romney favors the rich over the middle class. He's also losing his battle to keep his tax returns hidden, with 63% of the public (and 67% of Independents) wanting more of his tax returns released.
That poll nows has President Obama leading Romney by 7 points now (52% to 45%), and that margin is 11 points among Independents (53% to 42%). It seems that not only is Romney not gaining on the president, he is losing ground. His campaign is in trouble, and he did need to do something to shake things up.
He decided to do that by choosing Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) as his running mate. Now this has made the ultra-right-wing very happy, because Ryan is the king of teabagger politicians -- and there is no doubt that will help Romney to solidify his Republican base (something he has had trouble doing with his numerous flip-flops). These people may not fully trust Romney, but they do love Ryan.
But will this get him any votes outside the Republican Party. I doubt it. The people who love Ryan were never going to vote for President Obama under any circumstance. By picking Ryan, Romney has made it clear to all Americans that he is casting his lot with the far right -- and abandoning any attempt to move to the center for the Fall election. Romney has made it even clearer that he wants to give huge tax cuts to the rich, and pay for it by cutting the programs that help hurting Americans and raising taxes on the middle class.
He has made it clearer that he wants to abolish Medicare (and Medicaid) and throw the elderly and poor at the mercy of private insurance companies (corporations that show no mercy). He has made it clearer that he wants to continue the outsourcing of American jobs and continue to give enormous subsidies to corporations making record profits. And he has made it clear that he doesn't care for average Americans, who are struggling in this jobless economy. Evidently he has forgotten just how unpopular the Ryan budget plan was with the American public, because he has now signed on to it.
This should make the Democrats very happy. By picking Ryan, Romney has shown Americans that everything the Democrats were accusing him of is really true. The Democrats can now hang the Ryan budget plan around Romney's neck and let it drag him further down -- and beat that drum all the way to November.
I think my fellow blogger Jack Cluth (over at What Would Jack Do?) may have put it best. Here is what he had to say:
Mitt Romney’s selection of Ryan as his Vice-Presidential candidate should remove any lingering doubt of the complete and utter lack of humanity in today’s GOP. The idea that we’re all in this together- what many of us on the Left like to refer to as the Social Contract- is something today’s Republican Party disdains with a level of opprobrium normally reserved for pedophiles and sex offenders. Romney and Ryan would preside over the dismantling of social programs in favor of a “dog eat dog” economic model designed to weed out the weak. The idea that Americans have a collective responsibility to look out and care for one another is anathema to the slash-and-burn Tea Party Conservatives who, though a small minority, rule today’s GOP with an iron fist. Compassion is viewed as a sign of weakness, and concern for the sick, the poor, and the elderly is seen as a waste of public resources. Health care should be available in proportion to the size of your bank account, and government is to be dismantled in favor of allowing the free market to reign unchecked. In short, what the GOP seeks to create is government of, by, and for the 1%.