(ROCHESTER, Mich.) — Rep. Paul Ryan had a rock star introduction at a campaign rally in front of thousands Monday evening when Michigan native and Mitt Romney supporter musician Kid Rock addressed the crowd before the GOP vice presidential nominee.
Rock, whose real name is Robert Ritchie, struck a tone of togetherness during his brief speech, saying, “I really believe strongly that it’s OK to disagree on politics and the direction of our country without hating one another.”
Rock, 41, said it can be hard being a Republican in the entertainment industry and he knows his position “may alienate a few fans.”
“I mean it’s no secret that I am embedded in an industry that leans very left and I’ve listened to all the arguments and visions for our country. Don’t worry, I’m not going to give you a recap or stand up here and preach politics like some of my friends in Hollywood,” Kid Rock, dressed in his signature fedora hat, told the audience at Oakland University.
In Romney and Rock’s home state, the musician said he is “proud to say that we had elected our first black president” and he’s “sorry he didn’t do a better job.”
“I really wish he would have. I do, but the facts are the facts and we just saw them come to light in the last debate with no outside BS, no bias media involved, no interruptions and negative politics ads every five seconds and most importantly no damn teleprompters,” Rock said to huge cheers. “Yeah, I enjoyed it so much I think I might throw a keg party for the Ryan-Biden debate [Thursday].”
He called Ryan “a fellow hunter, a fellow fan of rock ‘n’ roll and a great Midwesterner who shares a vision not only with Mitt Romney, but also with myself.”
When Ryan took the stage, he noted that he met Rock a few months ago and added he loves it “when people stand up for themselves when they stand up for their beliefs, when they speak their principles,” adding that he is a “great citizen.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Brett Crandall, BYU-Idaho Media Relations
Adam Forsgren, EastIdahoNews.com
Nate Sunderland, EastIdahoNews.com
Lisa Respers France, CNN