The Washington Post

Paul Ryan: ‘We can do this’

Paul Ryan made a name for himself as a teller of hard truths, but he made his national debut at the Republican National Convention Wednesday night with a speech filled with optimism about what he and Mitt Romney could accomplish together.

He painted a dour picture of the Obama years (with some distortions) but a sunny image of the potential future, touting a goal of 12 million new jobs in the first four years of Romney's tenure. 

"College graduates should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life," he said, one of many memorable one-liners. He described Obama's vision as "a dull, adventureless journey from one entitlement to the next, a government-planned life, a country where everything is free but us." 

But Romney, he argued, was ready to take on the economy and turn things around. 

"The work ahead will be hard. These times demand the best of us – all of us -- but we can do this. Together, we can do this," he said. "We can get this country working again. We can get this economy growing again. We can make the safety net safe again. We can do this."

A Catholic, Ryan also vouched for Romney's faith, saying that while the two attend different churches, "the man who will accept your nomination tomorrow is prayerful and faithful and honorable."

And Ryan showed his lighter side, joking that his running mate listens to music heard "in many hotel elevators." 

Read his whole speech here.

Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.

The Freddie Gray case

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Campaign 2016 Email Updates

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!
Show Comments
The Republicans debate Saturday night. The New Hampshire primary is on Feb. 9. Get caught up on the race.
Heading into the next debate...
Donald Trump returns to the Republican presidential debate stage Saturday night. Marco Rubio arrives as a sudden star, but fending off ferocious attacks from his rivals. Still glowing from his Iowa victory, Ted Cruz is trying to consolidate conservative support, while Ben Carson is struggling to avoid being typecast as the dead man walking.
Play Video
New Hampshire polling averages
Donald Trump holds a commanding lead in the next state to vote, but Marco Rubio has recently seen a jump in his support, according to polls.
New Hampshire polling averages
A victory in New Hampshire revitalized Hillary Clinton's demoralized campaign in 2008. But this time, she's trailing Bernie Sanders, from neighboring Vermont. She's planning to head Sunday to Flint, Mich., where a cost-saving decision led to poisonous levels of lead in the water of the poor, heavily black, rust-belt city. 
56% 36%
Upcoming debates
Feb. 6: GOP debate

on ABC News, in Manchester, N.H.

Feb. 11: Democratic debate

on PBS, in Wisconsin

Feb 13: GOP debate

on CBS News, in South Carolina

Campaign 2016
State of the race

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.