Paul Ryan’s Character
There is an excellent piece in the Weekly Standard By Stephen F. Hayes on Rep. Paul Ryan and his career within the Republican Party. The article makes it easy to see why Rep. Ryan has been elected to serve 7 terms for Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional District. When one puts aside whatever policy disagreements that you might have, it is clear that Rep. Ryan is very likeable and is convinced that he has some of the solutions to the nation’s woes. From the article, consider how Rep. Ryan handled a town hall meeting in Kenosha where a number of supporters of his opponent have showed up:
Ryan’s efforts to keep things civil are not reciprocated. As he takes questions from the crowd, his opponents get louder. Finally, perhaps in an effort to mollify the Zerban supporters, Ryan calls on one of them. After a brief speech about the value of wind as an energy source and its benefits in Europe, she asks why state legislators aren’t doing more to produce wind. “Why aren’t we in Wisconsin getting on the bandwagon in this instead of blocking it?” Ryan temporarily resists the temptation to embarrass her, choosing instead to point out that there are federal incentives for alternative energy. “There is a wind production tax credit in the law, and it’s the only way to make it actually economically viable,” he begins, before the questioner shouts back at him.
The longer the session continues, the more aggressive Ryan’s opponents become. Inevitably, Ryan supporters begin to shout back at them on his behalf. Ryan admonishes both groups. “People, it doesn’t make sense to start yelling at each other,” he says. And moments later: “It doesn’t work if you yell at each other. It’s just not polite.” On four separate occasions, Ryan calls for civility, but he knows better than to expect it.
That’s class. Rather far removed from the image that the Democrats have tried to paint of an evil Republican pushing grandma off a cliff.
I recommend reading the piece in its entirety if you want to learn more about Rep. Ryan.