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'I hope that Mitt Romney listens to him': Delegates love Ryan more than Romney

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Timothy P. Carney

If you ask Republican delegates about Mitt Romney, nearly everyone is on board.

Ask them about Paul Ryan, on the other hand, and you get an explosion of love.

I interviewed a few dozen delegates Tuesday and Wednesday, and the most consistent theme was enthusiasm for Ryan.

Santorum and Gingrich delegates told me that it was the Ryan pick that moved them from merely accepting Romney to actually rallying behind the ticket.

Susan Witcher was a Gingrich delegate (“he is just brilliant” she told me). On Ryan? “I love him! He’s wonderful.”

Ted Liu, national committeeman from Hawaii called Ryan “an awesome choice,” and “a man of ideas.”

“A home run,” David Biddle, a Florida delegate said when I asked him about Ryan. Arlene Zerbst of Wyoming said Ryan “is awesome.”

Millionaire Art Pope, a North Carolina delegate and top GOP donor told me “going for Paul Ryan showed courage and conviction.”

“A great choice” said Fred Palmer of Missouri.

George and Kathrine Baxter, delegates from California, praised Romney as “a steady hand on the wheel,” but when I asked about Romney, they both broke it smiles. “Thrilled,” George said. “I love him,” Kathrine exclaimed.

Ron Paul delegate Ken Lucier of Minnesota said he was “a little disappointed we had to settle for” Romney. On Ryan, Lucier said “I hope that Mitt Romney listens to him.”

“Love him! Great choice!” Delaware delegate Tim Houseal said. “He’s the only guy with the guts to put a plan out there.”

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