The latest report from Rasmussen released Tuesday concerns Mitt Romney’s new VP pick, Rep. Paul Ryan. Of those surveyed, 50% look on Ryan with some level of favorability and 43% say he was the right pick.
The first survey from Rasmussen on the public perception of Paul Ryan as a vice presidential candidate comes only a few days after Mitt Romney announced the congressman from Wisconsin was his running mate. Records and policy positions will be examined under a fine-tuned microscope as the race intensifies. Likely voters who do not know Paul Ryan very well are already getting a massive amount of information on him.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 50% of Likely U.S. Voters now have a favorable opinion of Ryan, while 32% view him unfavorably. This includes 29% with a Very Favorable view of Romney’s vice presidential pick and 13% with a Very Unfavorable one. Only 13% are now unfamiliar with Ryan, and five percent (5%) are not sure about him.
Rep. Paul Ryan is considered by many to have been a bold choice by Mitt Romney, a gamble even, and of those surveyed 43% said he made the right choice. The striking figure from this particular question is that over a third of respondents don’t know what to make of the pick, which means their opinion of Ryan could be swayed later on.
The word ‘game changer’ has been thrown around for Paul Ryan and this survey reveals that, to some degree, the label can be used to describe him. Thirty-six percent said they are more likely to vote for Romney with Ryan as his running mate. Twenty-nine percent said they are less likely to vote for Romney now. Paul Ryan joining the race influenced nearly two-thirds of the survey takers in their voting decision.
Tea Partiers are excited, but a vast majority of them were already going to vote against Barack Obama by supporting whoever the GOP nominee was. The enthusiasm for Ryan will help strengthen grassroots efforts to get out the vote, but it has also intensified the rhetoric on the other side.
The Obama campaign wants the focus to be on programs like Medicare, because Ryan proposes reform that will likely be unpopular with voters in important states like Florida. The budget proposed by Paul Ryan would make significant changes to the current Medicare system, but the Romney/Ryan campaign argue their plan would not affect individuals over the age of 55. The Obama camp needs to do everything they can to keep people from talking about the current state of the economy.
There are less than three months left before Election Day. Between now and then people will learn a great deal about the candidates running, especially Paul Ryan since he has essentially become the story of the presidential race. It will be interesting to see how these numbers shift as we get closer to November.