(Bartow, Fla.) — Paul Ryan thinks the news that Mitt Romney decided to pay more in taxes, and not take as many charitable deductions as he was entitled to, in order to get to a 13 percent tax rate just shows “that the Romneys are extremely generous people.”
“They gave away 30 percent of their income to charity so Mitt Romney has always believed to whom much is given, much is required and he is living proof of that and this just shows you how generous the Romneys are as people,” Ryan said while visiting a fruit stand in Bartow, Fla. with his mother, Betty Douglas.
According to Romney’s 2011 tax returns released Friday, the Romneys donated 29.4% of their income to their church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, as well as the Tyler Charitable Foundation, which donates to a variety of causes including the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and Homes for Our Troops.
Ryan was also asked about comments his friend and Wisconsin governor Scott Walker made earlier Friday saying the GOP vice presidential nominee was not being “utilized” enough by the Romney campaign.
“Oh, he’s just a good backer of mine, I feel very good about it,” Ryan said. “Look, I’m doing the things I want to do, I was excited to go to AARP today, decided to go the Values Voters Summit, I — look at what we’re doing. We’re talking to local people, going around the country, talking to local press, I’m excited about my role and I feel very comfortable with it.”
While buying tangerines coincidentally at a place called “Walker’s Fruit Stand,” he said he feels like he is “absolutely” being utilized enough.
Ryan said he has “come to expect” the unwelcome reception he received earlier Friday when he addressed the AARP.
“Entitlement reform has unfortunately been made very partisan by partisans and so I have gotten that kind of reaction and unfortunately it’s what we’ve come to expect because the politics of reforming entitlements has become very bitter and it’s very unfortunate because if we let the politics get the best of us — these problems are going to get out of our control,” Ryan said. “We’ve got to fix Medicare before it goes bankrupt.”
Ryan was booed consistently at his address to the AARP’s national convention especially when he pledged to repeal the president’s signature health care legislation, also known as Obamacare.
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Dylan Byers, CNN
Ariane de Vogue and Laura Jarrett, CNN