By selecting Paul Ryan as his running mate, is Romney giving in to the most strident conservatives and giving up on moderates and independent voters?
UPDATE: This person definitely thinks so:
After a blasting in the polls and a haranguing by right-wing pundits, Mitt Romney decided that he should use the biggest statement of his primary campaign to try to win over a group of voters that never wanted him: right-wing Republicans. It’s exactly what John McCain tried to do. And I’m trying to remember: How did that work out for him?
Ryan has told the Congressional Budget Office that his budget will bring all federal spending outside Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security to 3.75 percent of GDP by 2050. That means defense, infrastructure, education, food safety, basic research, and food stamps — to name just a few — will be less than four percent of GDP in 2050. To get a sense for how unrealistic that is, Congress has never permitted defense spending to fall below three percent of GDP, and Romney has pledged that he’ll never let defense spending fall beneath four percent of GDP. It will be interesting to hear him explain away the difference.
But Klein’s most interesting point is that Romney seems to have picked the VP that Obama was steering him toward:
This election increasingly resembles the Obama campaign’s strategy rather than the Romney campaign’s strategy. … While Republicans were trying to keep Ryan quiet, the Obama administration was trying to make him famous. They saw his plans as the clearest distillation of the GOP’s governing philosophy — and they thought it would drive voters towards the Democrats. We’ll know in November whether that was a genius strategy or an epic miscalculation.