08/11/12 — The budget guy: Romney's pick signals belief in Americans' succeeding on own terms

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The budget guy: Romney's pick signals belief in Americans' succeeding on own terms

There really wasn't a consensus on whose name we would hear Saturday when Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney announced his pick for vice president.

Some thought it would be Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, while others thought it should be New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie or former presidential candidate and Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty.

But it turns out it was the budget guy -- the one who was the architect of the measure designed to cut spending and to increase growth. It was the economic renegade.

And that should tell you something about this campaign.

The machine has already started moving on the other side. A Paul Ryan pick, President Barack Obama's camp proposes, is proof positive that Romney's focus is to pamper the rich at the expense of the middle class.

Just about anyone could have predicted that reaction.

But here's how you should look at a Ryan pick -- even if you would have liked to see someone else in the vice presidential slot.

This is a sign that putting Americans back to work and allowing them to succeed on their own terms -- rather than growing a middle class dependent on government jobs, benefits and hand-out programs to survive -- is this ticket's priority.

And it is important to remember that, no matter what you hear from the other side.

Allowing businesses to thrive, hire and grow is exactly what it takes to create a vibrant economy -- and what creates the opportunities for just about anyone who is willing to do the work to have the chance to succeed.

There are decades of examples of how true that truth really is. And to this day, the search for the chance to pursue the American dream is why people flock to come here.

There is need for reform -- both for those who provide assistance and those who are forced or choose to survive on it.

We need a system that supports those who are in search of a better life -- and rewards their efforts with the start they need to make it on their own.

And we need a much keener eye out for those who seek to cheat the system -- both recipients and providers -- and strict rules on what happens when you don't follow the rules.

We need to demand accountability, reward responsibility and to celebrate hard work and ingenuity. That is how we got here -- and that is how this nation will continue to thrive.

And you do not accomplish that by growing government, creating more bureaucracy and making more people dependent on benefits that we cannot afford to sustain.

Otherwise, soon, there will be no more people willing to do the work to create the taxes to support those who are dependent on handouts.

Taxing the rich will not solve the debt crisis either. That is a yarn in itself. Cutting back on spending, weeding out fraud and waste and increasing tax revenue through a thriving economy -- that is how you cut a deficit.

Anything else is just simply window dressing.

The class warfare battle has begun -- and if they are going to be successful, Romney and Ryan will have to prove that they have a real plan, real answers and a timeline for getting this nation back on its feet.

Change is not enough anymore. Now, we need proof.

So we will see what happens over the next few months. We will gauge who is serious and who is just selling a slogan and a promise.

This weekend's announcement is just the first step.

But it is a step in the right direction.

Published in Editorials on August 11, 2012 10:52 PM