It was just fifteen days ago that Mitt Romney picked Paul Ryan for the campaign co-pilot seat, and they've been in rough skies ever since.
Ryan spent the first few days saying he wasn't really trying to kill
Medicare as we know it, then burned up part of a week by denying, then
admitting that, yes, he had solicited funds from the very federal stimulus program he'd repeatedly condemned.
And just as that fire was put out, sort of, Ryan's legislative far-right
pally Todd Akin burst on to the scene with his now-infamous screwy
suggestion that raped women could magically prevent their pregnancies
and thus were not entitled to abortions - - misogynist cruelty on par
with the proposal Akin and Ryan had endorsed in the House of
Representatives to limit federally-funded abortions to only women who
had been raped "forcibly."
Ryan had become the Dick Tracy comic strip character with a personal
rain cloud over his head - - and just as Ryan was to jet off for the
Tampa Convention a bigger, legitimate storm - - Hurricane Isaac - - took
aim at the Florida Gulf Coast and has already cut at least one day off
four days of GOP hoopla there.
They say national party nominating conventions are intentionally
superficial and scripted, but this one won't escape some discussion of
changing climate extremes - - Ryan voted against measures to stem
greenhouse gas emissions (see a report on Ryan's record, p. 136) - - even if the Tampa event puts more climate change deniers under one roof than attended the last ALEC reunion.
And as Florida first responders are pressed into action with the
approaching hurricane, Romney may wish he hadn't said the lesson of
Scott Walker's recall election win was that we didn't need more firefighters and police officers.
Tampa had already heavily borrowed police from across Florida to help
with convention security, and that was before Isaac began to bear down
on the convention city.
Nothing has gone right for the the GOP since Ryan loped into an
oddly-choreographed early Saturday morning news conference/photo op on
the dock off the USS Wisconsin, now a museum ship permanently tied up in
It's still a long way to November 6th - - but shorter by two weeks, and counting, then when Ryan joined Team Romney.
Rocky takeoff for sure, in part because Ryan didn't use those two lost weeks to show us he's ready to sit in the Captain's seat.
In fact, he hasn't looked much different than Dan Quayle, 2.0.
Cross-posted at The Political Environment.