2012 is not about Obama; it's a Referendum on the American Idea

Yes, Barack Obama brings added definition to the word disaster, as his presidency has overseen more people trapped below the poverty line than ever in modern history.

But is 2012 about defeating Obama only?

Paul Ryan doesn’t think so. The Wisconsin Republicans says that the eventual GOP nominee must make the 2012 election much broader in scope.

“[The election] is a referendum on the American idea, not on Barack Obama and his handling of the economy,” Ryan told HUMAN EVENTS. “It is, ‘Do you want to reclaim the founding principles that made us exceptional and great, an opportunity society with a circumscribed safety net? Or do you want the cradle-to-grave welfare state?’ ”

“It’s really a choice of two futures,” Ryan added. “We owe it to the country to let them choose what kind of country they want to be and what kind of people they want to be.”

(Part 4 our interview with Paul Ryan)


Ryan says that if the Republican challenger makes the election about the conflicting vision for America, then upon victory there would be a clear mandate to plow forward with the kind of large, structural changes that are needed to keep us free and prosperous.

“We will be better stewards of the economy than he will be,” is an insufficient campaign platform, Ryan stressed. “This is the most important election in our lifetime, no matter what generation you come from.”