Listen to your Top 10 Rock 'n' Vote 2015 finalists here

Paul Ryan's incontestable virtues

Having been on vacation until today, I'm late to the Paul Ryan party. But as someone who thought the selection of Sarah Palin thoroughly discredited John McCain's judgment, I have to say Mitt Romney has passed the most important test to date of his fitness to be president: choosing a running mate who would make a plausible president.

Ryan has been tarred as an ideologue and an extremist. But Palin was as well, and she lacked any of the assets he brings to the table. First is that he has dedicated himself to elected office over seven terms in the House. Second is that he has shown a serious interest in the substance of policy, while acquiring genuine expertise in an important area, the federal budget.

He has earned the respect of his fellow House members. And he's capable of answering policy questions in an intelligent, articulate way. Ryan can be of use to Romney in carrying out the goals of his administration, if the Republicans win.

All this may sound like I'm setting the bar awfully low. But after the Palin scare, modest virtues don't seem so modest. And there were serious GOP presidential candidates who weren't much better than Palin, including Herman Cain and Rick Perry. Ryan isn't any more conservative than a lot of tea party darlings. He is, however, a lot more competent.

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
Related Content
  •  
  • Bruce Jenner interview: My brain is more female than male
    Bruce Jenner interview: My brain is more female than male

     In the 1970s, Bruce Jenner was a symbol of American masculinity as an Olympic champion. Nearly 40 years later, in an extraordinary television interview, Jenner told the world that he identifies as a woman and has felt gender confusion since he was a little boy growing up in the New York suburbs.

Comments
Loading