Could the selection of Paul Ryan be a means to escape blame in defeat?

There are two ways to think about Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan this morning. The first is how it affects Romney’s prospects for winning in November. The second is how it affects the internal struggle between conservatives and moderates within the GOP.

Regarding the first question, the Ryan pick is, of course, lunacy. Ryan’s claim to fame is a long-term budget blueprint that would massively cut Medicare over the coming decades while essentially zeroing out domestic spending oneverything else but defense. It would pair this unprecedented austerity with enormous tax cuts for the wealthy. All of these things are, to varying degrees, wildly unpopular. Which makes it hardly surprising that the only time the Ryan budget actually came before voters—in a 2011 congressional special election in upstate New York—it was a political disaster, handing a safe Republican district to a little-known Democrat. 

Noam Scheiber — Just One Reason to Pick Ryan: Blame the Loss on Conservatives

Who will Mitt Romney choose as his running mate?

"The end is near for Rick Santorum. That doesn’t mean, though, that it’s time for Mitt Romney to start celebrating. Yes, Romney won Wisconsin Tuesday night, and has a near-lock on the eventual nomination. But claims that he is beginning to seal the deal with party conservatives are premature. A look at Wisconsin exit polls shows that he is still struggling among right-wing voters. That has clear implications for the type of general election campaign Romney can run—and the kind of vice-presidential candidate he’ll eventually have to pick."

- Ed Kilgore, Why Romney’s VP Choice May Be Out of His Hands

Photo courtesy of Funnyordie

Has Joe Biden more than made up for his previous political stumbles?

In our newest issue, Timothy Noah delves into the surprising non-embarrassment that is Vice President Joe Biden.

"There are two Democrats running at the top of the ticket this year, and only one of them is President Barack Obama. When Joe Biden’s name first came up, in 2008, as a possible running mate, I told everyone I knew that it would never happen. When Obama did choose Biden, I braced myself for disaster. But Biden turned out to be the right guy for the job. People don’t appreciate what a surprising outcome this is."

— Timothy Noah “Second Thoughts: The Surprising Non-Embarrassment That Is Joe Biden.

Photo courtesy of the Los Angeles Times.

Assuming Mitt Romney will be the GOP nominee, who will he choose as his running mate?

The most striking thing that emerged from these conversations was that some Republicans are a lot more excited about the vice presidential choices than about the presidential ones. “We have more instantly credible vice presidents than we do people running for president,” said Ed Rogers, co-founder with Haley Barbour of the public relations group BGR and a veteran of the Bush-Quayle campaign.

Read more in Eliza Gray’s “Veep Squad.”

Courtesy of The Onion.com:

Former vice president Dick Cheney promised to have ‘heads exploding’ with his new memoir, In My Time. Here are some revelations from the book:

  • Eats his tuna can-and-all
  • Throughout book, American public told to shut up
  • When he said American troops would “be greeted as liberators” in Iraq, he meant it, and he still believes it
  • Somehow obtained and continues to possess all of the U.S. nuclear launch codes
  • Is only able to speak out of the left side of his mouth due to a massive stroke that has been ongoing since 1983
  • Once in late 2003, he let out a series of coarse wheezes that he confirmed was human laughter
  • He first got the idea for water-boarding after watching his entire family slowly drown
  • Really just the nicest guy you’ll ever meet