PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Republican ticket is now all but set in the race for the White House as presidential candidate Mitt Romney revealed his running mate, Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, Saturday morning.
Romney and Ryan are now off on a four-day bus tour through four battleground states, including Ohio.
In the hours following the announcement, reaction from local Republicans and Democrats has been pouring in.
While most Republicans applaud the selection of Congressman Ryan as Romney’s running mate, Democrats have a different view.
“They’re going to attack Social Security; trying to balance the budget on the backs of senior citizens while protecting tax cuts for the very wealthiest in this country,” says Rep. Mark Critz.
Critz opened his new Allegheny County campaign office Saturday. He says he believes the addition of Ryan is part of a Republican plan to go after Medicare.
“I think what it does is, it sends really a signal to the people of this country that the Ryan budget, who Keith Rothfus – my opponent – supports, wants to end Medicare as we know it and turn it into a voucher program,” Critz added.
“People don’t want the Paul Ryan-budget, so I think it will be good for Barack Obama and the Democrats in November,” said Marco Attisano, a Democrat.
But Republican Congressman Tim Murphy of Mount Lebanon thinks Ryan is the right person for the job.
“I’m pleased that a dear friend of mine has been chosen as the vice presidential candidate to run with Gov. Romney,” said Murphy. “I’m excited about Paul Ryan.”
Romney’s announcement came on the same day that Allegheny County Republicans opened their new headquarters in Green Tree.
“I like his conservative ideas,” said Lou Neubert, a Republican, “and he got ideas on how to get the country back to where we can make some money in the country.”
The 42-year-old Ryan is the chief architect of the Republicans’ tax and spending cut plan.
Republican Tom Smith is running against Sen. Bob Casey.
“We need to get this economy growing,” said Smith. “I mean, we all know that we’ve been in over 40 something months of over eight percent unemployment, and that’s not good. We got to get that turned around.”
“Paul Ryan is going to keep us focused on the issues that matter to Americans and that’s jobs and the economy,” added Murphy. “He’s absolutely passionate about it. He’s incredibly knowledgeable.”