Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Paul Ryan: Mitt Romney's Las Vegas Headliner

He's here! Paul Ryan will be headlining a Mitt Romney campaign rally at Palo Verde High School in Summerlin today... Followed by an uber-exclusive fundraiser with none other than Willard's #1 money man ( Sheldon Adelson) at The Venetian. Wow, what a man of the people. Paul Ryan will be rallying Nevada "TEA-publicans" at the high school serving some of the highest income neighborhoods in the entire state, then he will be raising money from the guy on The Strip who actually makes the bulk of his billions from wheeling & dealing with the Macau mafia. What a guy, that Paul Ryan!

And already, Nevada Republicans are set to give Paul Ryan a very warm welcome. Just look at what they're doing to prepare for his arrival.

The Ryan pick is also shaking up the races that will decide which party controls the Senate. Dean Heller of Nevada — appointed to the Senate last year — is already under fire for the unique distinction of being the only lawmaker who voted for the Ryan budget in both chambers. Montana Republican Senate candidate Denny Rehberg is running fast from the Ryan budget. And in Florida, a state where the senior citizen vote is crucial, vulnerable Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson could barely contain his glee at the opportunity to attack the Ryan budget.

The reality is that Ryan is now all Republicans' running mate whether they like it or not, forcing GOP candidates who would just as soon run from the debate over senior citizen entitlements to embrace the third rail of American politics like never before.

One GOP insider lamented that party leaders “have spent the last year” trying to take Medicare off the political front burner, but the Ryan pick “puts it all back out there now.” [...]

Following the selection, Heller praised Ryan’s “courage to make the tough decisions needed to restore our nation’s fiscal health.” But Democratic Rep. Shelley Berkley saw a ripe opportunity to drive home what Democrats see as Heller’s biggest weakness: voting to reconfigure Medicare.

“No one is happier today than Sen. Dean Heller, one of Rep. Paul Ryan’s strongest supporters who said he was ‘proud’ to vote twice for the Ryan budget plan that essentially ends Medicare by turning it over to private insurance companies.”

Both Joe Heck and Dean Heller are inextricably linked to Paul Ryan and his plan to destroy Medicare by replacing real health care coverage with vouchers. Yet since Mitt Romney has launched Paul Ryan and his quest to end Medicare & Social Security as we know it onto the center stage of the Presidential Campaign, Heller & Heck have to be more careful in tip-toe-ing around their own record of standing with Ryan. After all, about 20% of Nevada's electorate is retired. And even more Nevadans fear the kinds of cutting and gutting of Social Security & Medicare that Paul Ryan has long championed.

Already, Ryan has put Mitt Romney into even more of a precarious situation here in Nevada. But now, the entire ticket is threatened. And if/when Romney & Ryan drag down Heller & Heck with them, they can all thank the Romney-Ryan plan to slash the social safety net for the middle class (to pay for more "billionaire bailouts") for it.

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