Ryan: Romney Will Tackle Entitlements with ‘Boldness and Specificity’

by Robert Costa

As Stephen F. Hayes reports, Governor Scott Walker’s post-recall comments have focused on one key pitch: urging Mitt Romney to be more “aggressive” on entitlement reform.

Speaking with Fox & Friends on Wednesday, Walker advised Romney to follow the example of Representative Paul Ryan, the Budget Committee chairman and author of the GOP budget.

“We love people like Paul Ryan in Wisconsin because he has the courage to tackle these big issues at the national level,” Walker said. “If Governor Romney wants to be competitive in Wisconsin, and I think he can, he needs to tackle those issues.”

In an interview with National Review Online, Ryan applauded Walker’s leadership but disagreed with Walker’s assertion that Romney has not done enough to outline his fiscal policies.

“Governor Romney has shown that he is willing to tackle the problems with boldness and specificity,” Ryan says. “Over the past year, he has embraced our policy. On Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, he has said more than any other presidential candidate. He’s united with us behind a common purpose.”

“I know that he is going to keep talking about our plan,” Ryan says. “He is going to talk about the choice we face in this election, about the sacrifices that would come with a debt crisis under President Obama versus what we can do to preempt that.”

In St. Louis on Thursday, Romney rapped the president for his “moral” failure to address fiscal problems. “This is not just a failure of policy; it is a moral failure of tragic proportions,” he said. “Our government has an absolute moral commitment to help every American help themselves.”

Ryan, who has privately advised the former Massachusetts governor on entitlement issues, says that Romney’s rhetoric reflects his commitment to forcefully address federal solvency.

“Courage was on the ballot in Wisconsin and courage won,” Ryan says. “People want to see leaders lead and fix problems. Scott went after the root causes of Wisconsin’s problems. What we are doing in Washington is the same, and Mitt Romney and the rest of us are united on that. We know that voters want to be talked to as adults, not pandered to or have issues demagogued.”

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