The Corner

Over Half of Americans Have No Opinion on Ryan

Despite all the Beltway brouhaha over the Ryan budget, many Americans don’t know enough about Paul Ryan to have even a favorable or unfavorable view of him, reports CNN:

Polls show Americans are largely unsure of Ryan, who chairs the House Budget Committee. A CNN/ORC International survey taken August 7-8 showed 54% of those polled saying they didn’t know enough about Ryan to form an opinion. Twenty-seven percent said they viewed the Wisconsin congressman favorably and 19% viewed him unfavorably.

Among Republicans polled, Ryan’s favorability was higher – though 45% still said they didn’t know enough about him to form an opinion. Ryan was viewed favorably by 49% of Republicans and unfavorably by 6%.

Twenty-seven percent of independents surveyed viewed Ryan favorably, compared to 22% who said they had an unfavorable opinion of him and 54% who were unsure.

And the Democrats are looking to take advantage of that, and start feeding people negative impressions of Ryan. From a fundraising e-mail sent by DCCC executive director Robby Mook this morning:

[I]n a poll this week, only 46% of Americans even had an opinion of Ryan (38% had never heard of him). These next hours are critical. We need to contact key voters immediately and make sure they know about the Romney-Ryan plan to put millionaire tax cuts over Medicare for seniors.

One of Ryan’s best qualities is his ability to defend his own plan, and make the case that under the circumstances, what he’s proposing is a reasonable solution. But the overall Romney campaign rollout of Ryan is going to prove critical — Ryan can’t on his own swat back all of these attacks that are coming, and there are going to have to be compelling surrogates who can eloquently explain what he stands for.

Katrina Trinko — Katrina Trinko is a political reporter for National Review. Trinko is also a member of USA TODAY’S Board of Contributors, and her work has been published in various media outlets ...

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More
PC Culture

Kill Chic

We live in a society in which gratuitous violence is the trademark of video games, movies, and popular music. Kill this, shoot that in repugnant detail becomes a race to the visual and spoken bottom. We have gone from Sam Peckinpah’s realistic portrayal of violent death to a gory ritual of metal ripping ... Read More
Elections

Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More
Law & the Courts

What the Second Amendment Means Today

The horrifying school massacre in Parkland, Fla., has prompted another national debate about guns. Unfortunately, it seems that these conversations are never terribly constructive — they are too often dominated by screeching extremists on both sides of the aisle and armchair pundits who offer sweeping opinions ... Read More
U.S.

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
Film & TV

Black Panther’s Circle of Hype

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More