Paul Ryan spoke to the Republican National Convention on Wednesday night. Here’s what people are saying about the vice presidential candidate’s turn at the podium:
He energized delegates at the RNC.
According to the conservative blogosphere, Ryan dazzled the audience on Wednesday night. “Tonight, Paul Ryan brought Rush Limbaugh’s CPAC themes full circle into the next generation with a youthful, smiling face that makes it hard for the Democrats to attack,” said Red State’s Eric Erickson
. “He related to women, to moms, to small businesses, and to families.” Due to the speech, delegates left the hall on Wednesday “unmistakably more energized than they had the previous night,” according to Politico
He had a lot to live up to.
No, not the GOP’s last vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin (although the Chicago Tribune
did compare him to Mama Grizzly in an analysis today). Instead, Ryan had big shoes to fill with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice opening for him. Rice's speech earned countless accolades, including this one from The Atlantic
’s Molly Ball (among others) praised the speech: “Rice’s address had a sophistication, ease, and grace almost never found in modern political speeches. It was a speechwriter’s speech, the kind you could imagine reading in a history book. She spoke with a diplomat’s formality and the teleprompter turned off, glancing only occasionally at her notes on the podium.”
He scorched President Obama.
No surprise here—after all, vice presidential candidates are drafted to be attack dogs. Among Ryan's zingers: “Fear and division is all
[President Obama has] got left. With all of their attack ads the president is just throwing away money. And he is pretty experienced at that.” And: “College grads should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedroom staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life.”
He told a couple of whoppers. Fact checkers are screaming
over a few points Ryan made about Medicare, Obama’s stimulus package, and the closing of a GM plant in his hometown of Janesville, Wis. Ryan pinned the blamed for the plant's shuttering on President Obama, when in fact it closed in 2008—under President Bush’s watch. As one person on Twitter put it
, “Paul Ryan is already helping the economy by creating jobs for fact checkers.”
He got blasted by … Fox News.
Sally Kohn, a writer and Fox News contributor, employed three words
to describe Ryan’s speech: dazzling, deceiving, and distracting. She said: “Ryan may have helped solve some of the likeability problems facing Romney, but ultimately by trying to deceive voters about basic facts and trying to distract voters from his own record, Ryan’s speech caused a much larger problem for himself and his running mate.”