CINCINNATI, Ohio — Paul Ryan made a quick stop today in the crucial state of Ohio to remind supporters of their “responsibility” to talk to friends who voted for Barack Obama in 2008, but now “just aren’t as impressed,” and get them to turn out for Mitt Romney.
“You know, you have a big say-so,” Ryan told the crowd of several hundred at a Cincinnati air field. “You know, you’re the battleground state of battleground states. You understand your responsibility, right? You understand your opportunity, right? That means you have within your control, your ability to go find those people who voted for Barack Obama in 2008 … who heard the hope and the change and loved the promises, all these great speeches, but see that this is nothing but a failed agenda of broken promises, of hollow rhetoric.”
Ryan acknowledged the massive air war going on from both sides, but said that the debates have let him and R9mney “cut through the clutter.” Romney and Obama face off again Tuesday night.
“People will see through it,” Ryan said. “Look, I know what your TV screens look like these days. These debates are giving us the ability to cut through the clutter and give people a very clear choice. That’s what we are offering. And the choice is really clear.”
Ohio is seen as crucial, because no Republican has ever gotten to the White House without winning the state. The most recent poll out of Ohio, an NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll from last week, found President Obama with 51 percent support to Romney’s 45 percent.
As he did in Wisconsin this morning, Ryan urged the audience to “vote early so that on election day you can help get people to the polls, you can help make the phone calls, you can help give people rides.”
“This election is so important, we even need you to talk to your relatives to get them out. That’s so important,” Ryan joked.
The Obama campaign responded that the Romney campaign may be “offering new rhetoric,” but the underlying message is still the same.
“Congressman Ryan’s claim that Mitt Romney is offering actual solutions is totally disconnected from reality,” Obama campaign spokesman Danny Kanner said in a statement. “While Romney and Ryan are certainly offering new rhetoric in the campaign’s final weeks, they can’t hide their plan to bring back the same failed policies that punished middle class families and crashed our economy in the first place.”
After his brief remarks, the GOP vice presidential nominee served Montgomery Inn barbecue to supporters waiting in line, asking over and over, “Chicken or pork?”
In between barbecue, backers congratulated him on his debate performance, while others said they are “praying for you to win.” Ryan introduced himself as “Paul,” telling those with kind or supportive words, “That’s the nicest thing you could say to me.”
Ryan is headed to New York City this afternoon where he will hold a series of fundraisers, including addressing high level donors from all over the country who are gathering in New York for a meeting on fundraising and strategy.