I don't mind Ryan as a person, he has "the look" and is a good family man and everything... and I like that he is a Catholic given all the evangelical types that have been paraded through the Republican party lately... but the theme of his very conservative economic plan will scare a lot of people, especially seniors: cut the hell out of all programs except defense and lower taxes. It's like deja vu all over again - the standard far-right economic mantra that has been a tough sell over the past 30 years and still is. Hard for me to believe this move does much to convince those in the center and/or those undecided to move toward Romney. Although I personally believe we need to mess with Medicare/Medicaid, about 100 million people rely on these programs. Very dangerous to propose massive changes when seniors vote in a larger % than younger folks. And, I always laugh at the "rallying the base" argument. As if any conservative was going to vote for Obama (and any leftie was going to vote for Romney). The base knew who they were going to vote for long ago.
My personal issue is his budget plan would cut spending on programs that support academic research, such as the National Institutes of Health, and would make several changes to the federal student-aid programs. It also calls for a complete spending cut for the National Endowment for the Humanities.
I'll bow out now because politics/religion and message boards are generally a bad mix (although the conversation on this board is always unusually civil - one reason why I love SabreSpace).
They knew who they were going to vote for...if they were going to vote. "Rallying the base" doesn't refer to convincing them to vote for Romney, it refers to convincing them to turn out in the first place. Campaigns have recently started focusing more on mobilization than registration campaigns--they care more about those who are registered actually voting than getting more people registered. One way to accomplish this is by having a candidate/ticket registered voters can get excited about. The hardcore ideologues were always going to vote, and always going to vote for Romney...but there's a segment of the Republican party which "lean conservative" or are "weak partisans" who aren't surefire voters--rallying the base refers to getting that segment to turn out on election day.