Steve Benen: As a rule, when your opponents seem really happy about your choice in running mates, it’s fair to say you’ve made a provocative choice.
And this morning, Democrats are practically giddy, unable to believe their good fortune.
…. both the left and right have the Republican running mate they hoped for – Romney has picked the architect of a radical, Medicare-crushing budget plan, debated by the least popular Congress since the dawn of modern polling. Indeed, it’s fair to say the radical Ryan budget helped make this Congress so widely disliked, which makes his VP nomination that much more remarkable.
For months, Democrats have been trying to inject the “Romney-Ryan plan” into the political bloodstream, and now, the Republicans’ presidential candidate has made Dems’ job easier. The Obama campaign hoped to make Ryan Romney’s effective running mate, never expecting the GOP candidate to make this literal.
The result is a dynamic that was hard to predict. Romney isn’t even trying to reach out to moderate voters; he’s taking the most far-right candidacy in modern American history and turning it to 11.
Full post here
Chris Cillizza: The Ryan budget: Democrats are salivating — not literally but damn close — over the prospect of Romney putting Ryan on the ticket, believing that by doing so Romney could cost Republicans not just the presidency but the House and Senate due to the controversial budget plan that bears the Wisconsin House Member’s name.
At the center of that budget is Ryan’s call to fundamentally overhaul Medicare, a critical piece of the social safety net that has a huge impact in the life of many people older Americans.
Those older voters are also the most reliable group of voters in every election — and a critical constituency for Republicans. In 2008, Arizona Sen. John McCain won voters aged 60+ by just four points, half the margin that George W. Bush enjoyed in 2004 among that same group.
To beat Obama, Romney has to improve on McCain’s margin among older voters, and Democrats believe that will be simply impossible if he has to defend the Ryan budget every day between now and Nov. 6….
Washington Post: A bumpy overseas trip and a month of pummeling by Democratic ads depicting Mitt Romney as an out-of-touch plutocrat and possible tax evader appear to have taken a toll.
Three polls released in the last 24 hours show President Obama widening his lead over the former Massachusetts governor to as much as nine points. The surveys of registered voters, all conducted sometime between Aug. 2 and 8, also have Romney’s unfavorable ratings headed north. Two of the polls show his support among independents slipping.
A Fox News poll found the largest deficit, with Romney trailing by nine points (49 percent to 40 percent) That’s the widest gap Fox has reported all year. Its July survey had Obama up by four points (45 percent to 41 percent). Fox found that Obama’s increasing advantage comes mainly on the strength of a big bump from independents, who now support the president by 11 points, up from four points in July.