President Obama showed Mitt Romney why choosing Paul Ryan was a big mistake, by immediately linking Ryan to the most unpopular House of Representatives in American history.
The president spoke about the drought and tied Paul Ryan to the unpopular House. Obama said,
Right now folks here in Iowa and across the heartland are suffering from one of the worst droughts in 50 years. Farmers and ranchers depend on a good crop season to pay the bills and put a roof over their heads, and I know that things are tough right now.
The best way to help these states is for leaders in Congress to pass a farm bill that not only helps farmers and ranchers respond to natural disasters, but also makes necessary reforms and gives them some long-term certainty. But right now, too many members of Congress are blocking that bill from becoming law. Now, I’m told Governor Romney’s new running mate might be around Iowa these next few days. And he’s one of those leaders of Congress standing in the way. So if you happen to see Congressman Ryan, tell him how important this farm bill is to Iowa and our rural communities. It’s time to put politics aside and pass it right away.
But the folks suffering from this drought can’t wait for Congress to do its job. So in the meantime, I’ve made sure my Administration is doing everything we can to provide relief to those who need it. Last week, we announced $30 million to help farmers and ranchers, get more water to livestock, and rehabilitate land affected by the drought. Today, we’re announcing that the federal government will help livestock producers by purchasing over $150 million worth of meat and fish now, while prices are low, and freeze it for later. We’ve got a lot of freezers. (Laughter).
Obama told Iowans that they face a choice between two fundamentally different vision of this country and the path we have to take, and their choice would impact their lives, their children’s lives, and their grand children’s lives.
One thing that few people have discussed is that Mitt Romney is now directly married to a House of Representatives with a 16% approval rating. Obama was correct. Ryan is one of the Republicans in the House blocking the farm bill. More importantly, Obama called Ryan the intellectual leader of the House. The message is Paul Ryan is the brain behind a House that many Americans view as broken and dysfunctional.
People who are claiming that the president went after Ryan on the farm bill are missing the point. President Obama tied Paul Ryan and the rich guy running for president with him to the House of Representatives. Romney already had a problem with the House because of the looming fight over the Bush tax cuts, but from here on out, Romney is going to be tied to every unpopular move that the Republican House makes.
The House is absolutely politically toxic, which makes Romney’s selection of Ryan even more baffling. Thanks to Paul Ryan, President Obama now gets to run against Mitt Romney and the most unpopular House of Representatives in American history.
What the president is doing is using the House to define Paul Ryan, and he is using Ryan to define Romney. The Romney campaign has not been able to define their candidate, so there is little chance they will be able to define Paul Ryan. Obama is already defining Ryan as the brain behind the House. If you don’t like what House is doing, you don’t like Paul Ryan’s ideas, and you don’t like the direction that Mitt Romney will take the country in.
Never underestimate the unpopularity of an anti-farm bill message in Iowa, but the Obama campaign has a deeper purpose here. State by state, they are going to define Paul Ryan by the things he opposes. In Florida, Pennsylvania, and other swing states, Ryan is going to be accurately portrayed as the man who would kill Medicare.
The Obama campaign is going to make Mitt Romney pay dearly for choosing Paul Ryan.