Reporting Jon Keller
Filed underBlogs, CBS Boston Blogs, Keller @ Large, Local, News, Politics, Seen On WBZ-TV, Syndicated Local, Watch + Listen
BOSTON (CBS) – The Paul Ryan pick is exciting Romney’s conservative supporters, and democrats hope it will also light a fire under lethargic parts of their own base.
“I am told Governor Romney’s new running mate Paul Ryan might be around Iowa in the next few days,” President Obama said during a campaign stop. “He is one of the leaders of Congress standing in the way.”
The push is on to turn Ryan into a drag on the GOP ticket, especially among undecided or apathetic voters.
A new national poll shows how urgently the president needs to motivate them. There are an estimated 80 million voters who are considered unlikely to show up at the polls.
And according to a Suffolk University/USA Today survey of 800 of them, they would break for Obama over Romney by more than a two-to-one margin if they bother to vote.
So the demonization of Ryan has begun.
“What’s gutsy about gutting Medicare, Medicaid, education?” said Vice President Joe Biden at a campaign event.
But in Harvard Square, the bluest corner of America ‘s bluest state , it seems it’ll take more than 48 hours of red-hot rhetoric to get the job done.
When potential voters were asked what they think of Ryan, some were unsure, only knew little about him, or did not know what he could offer as Romney’s VP.
“These names they call back and forth, that doesn’t help me decide. I know what I have with Obama, but I don’t know what I would have with Romney,” said one voter. “But the Ryan appointment could help.”
Not a single voter had anything critical to say about Ryan’s controversial ideas for reforming Medicare and Social Security, even though past surveys have shown strong opposition to them in the past.
So the Obama campaign’s task is clear; get those swing voters riled up about what Ryan stands for, and make sure they go to the polls to vent that anger.