Vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan held two town halls in Colorado Wednesday, emphasizing the country’s debt and the looming cuts to its defense budget in Colorado Springs and Fort Collins.
In Colorado Springs, a day after Republican Senators John McCain (AZ), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), and Kelly Ayotte (N.H.) held a town hall to discuss how defense cuts through sequestration Obama put on the table would be disastrous for the country’s defense, Ryan talked about Obama would scale back missile defense and cost Colorado residents nearly 18,000 jobs.
“When they propose to gut our military like this administration does, it sends one message and one message alone: weakness,” Ryan said.
In Fort Collins, Ryan discussed how Obama’s foreign policy projected weakness but focused more on the economy. He warned America would go down Europe’s path if Obama was given four more years and how each American is now responsible for nearly $16,000 of the country’s debt.
Ryan gave interviews to local outlets, focusing on energy policy. He talked about “fourteeners,” referring to the mountains he has climbed in Colorado that rise more than 14,000 feet above sea level. And coverage of his visit indicates Ryan could help Romney win over and retain independents and conservatives in the state, as had been advertised.
In The Denver Post, the headline the day after was “Paul Ryan Revs Up Colorado Crowds.”
In the Fort Collins Coloradoan, the front page headline was “This Moment Needs A Leader.”
In the Loveland Reporter Herald, “Broken Promise” was a headline about Obama’s failed policies and “Liberty’s Prime Seat” about children who attended Ryan’s rally with their parents.
“We are worth hiring” was the headline in The Durango Herald.
When Mitt Romney selected Paul Ryan to be his running mate, Republicans were optimistic Ryan could attract independent, exurban voters and young professionals who voted for Obama in 2008 while energizing conservatives in places like Colorado.
Obama won Colorado by nine points in 2008. Obama and Romney are essentially tied in Colorado in 2012 and for Romney to win Colorado, he needs to turn out conservative voters in places like Colorado Springs and win over independent in areas like Fort Collins.