VP Beat: Paul Ryan Says Romney Can ‘Save This Country’

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- RYAN ON ROMNEY: HE WILL ‘SAVE THIS COUNTRY’ Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., made his first speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif. Tuesday night and spoke of Mitt Romney’s ability to change the course of the country, ABC News’ John R. Parkinson reports:

“During a Q&A session following his address, the moderator wasted no time before he asked Ryan the million-dollar question on everybody’s mind: Would Ryan accept an offer from Mitt Romney to join him on the GOP’s ticket this fall,? ‘Next question,’ Ryan answered to laughter. ‘You know, that is someone else’s decision months away, and you know, that’s a question I would have to have with my wife before I have it with all of you. I like what I’m doing, I’m doing what I’m doing. Don’t underestimate how important Congress is.’ Asked what his sense of Romney is and whether he could be a great president, Ryan praised the presumptive nominee, predicting he will defeat President Obama this fall and Republicans will ‘save this country.’”

RUBIO GIVES ROMNEY LITTLE BOOST IN FLA. – A new Quinnipiac Poll released Wednesday morning shows that Sen. Marco Rubio, R- Fla., only gives Mitt Romney a slight boost with voters in Florida.  Adding Rubio to the ticket brings Romney to 49 percent over Obama at 41 percent among Florida voters.  Without taking a running mate into consideration, Romney already has a 6 percentage point lead at 47 percent over Obama’s 41 percent. Rubio’s approval rating in Florida sits at 54 percent and his favorability rating is 44 percent.

RUBIO TO SPEAK TO LATINO GROUP: Rubio will deliver the keynote address at the Latino Coalition’s 2012 Small Business Summit at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C., Wednesday afternoon.  Romney will speak at the same event at noon.

CHRISTIE HELPS HAUL IN $5 MILLION FOR ROMNEY: N.J. Gov. Chris Christie helped haul in $5 million for Romney by attending a fundraiser at the Park Hyatt Ballroom in New York City Tuesday evening, according to the pool report.  “We’re here tonight to let everybody know we need to do everything we can together to make sure that this November we show Barack Obama the door, and we open the door for Mitt and Ann Romney to the White House, and your support here is extraordinarily important,” Christie said. “Governor Romney needs to make sure he has every dollar that he can to get his message out to the people of this country.”

PORTMAN READY FOR VP SPOT? Real Clear Politics’ Erin McPike examines why Rob Portman’s resume and experience makes him a potential VP contender who would be ready to step into the job on day one.  “Rob Portman has been preparing for this for years,” McPike writes.” Although the Ohio senator offers the standard line that he doesn’t expect to be picked as Mitt Romney’s running mate, the trajectory of his career and his political conduct in Washington have made nearly everyone in politics almost certain that he’ll be plucked for this year’s Republican presidential ticket.”

THUNE EYES JUMP UP LEADERSHIP LADDER: Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., sits on several potential VP lists, but the South Dakota senator has his eyes set on moving up the leadership ladder in the Senate, Roll Call reports: “Sen. John Thune may have just been elected Senate Republican Conference chairman in January, but he is still eyeing a move up the leadership ladder this year with either a run for whip or for National Republican Senatorial Committee chairman. When asked Tuesday about his plans to pursue either position this fall, the South Dakota Republican said: ‘I haven’t ruled any options in or out. We’ll make a determination at some point, probably after the election.’”

AFL-CIO LEADER BASHES HALEY PIÑATA: South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley’s unpopularity with some union leaders showed Tuesday when a video surfaced of Donna Dewitt, the state AFL-CIO president, using a baseball bat to smash a piñata bearing Haley’s face.  Dewitt said there was “no ill intent” behind the action but instead was an example of the frustration they have with Haley’s stance on unions.  “She’s been whacking at us over the last two years,” Dewitt told ABC News, adding later, “Kids use piñatas all the time.” Haley reacted to the video on twitter, sending out a link to the video with the message: “Wow. I wonder if the unions think this kind of thing will make people take them seriously. Check this out.” You can see the video here.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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