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Utah GOP leaders love Romney’s pick

GOP says Ryan’s fiscal policies will help nation; Dems say they could hurt Romney’s chances.

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"The Romney-Ryan ticket will help small businesses and will build the American middle class, offering a stark contrast to Obama’s failed economic policies that have left each American household with $520,000 worth of debt," Wright said.

The progressive group Alliance For A Better Utah says Ryan’s budget plan would replace Medicare benefits for seniors with a coupon system and raise taxes on low-income Utahns while cutting taxes for the rich. The group also said Ryan has consistently voted to increase government spending and wage unaffordable wars.

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Ryan visited Utah in late June to attend a Deer Valley retreat for Romney’s biggest donors and bundlers and to help raise money for Republican 4th District candidate Mia Love.

At the time, Ryan declined to comment on whether he would be interested in being vice president, but said that the country needs leaders — like Love — who are serious about addressing the nation’s debt crisis.

"We need people who are sincere reformers who will do what it takes to get the country back on track," Ryan told The Tribune. "What we find from the other side is they are not offering solutions, only attacks. We’re trying to prevent a debt crisis. ... Unfortunately, the president has offered no solutions to do that, and the Senate has chosen not to pass a budget for three years, which accelerates our path toward a debt crisis."

Love said the Ryan choice "heightens my enthusiasm" for the ticket, and she is eager to help pass the Romney-Ryan agenda in Congress.

"Congressman Ryan has led the fight in Congress to get the federal budget under control, save our entitlement programs and get government off the backs of job creators," Love said. "These are priorities of working Utahns, and it is no great leap to predict that Utah’s support for the Romney-Ryan ticket on Nov. 6 will be overwhelming."

During the Deer Valley retreat, Ryan spoke on a panel with South Dakota Sen. John Thune and Meg Whitman, president and CEO of Hewlett-Packard, about what it would take to regenerate the economy and grow businesses.

He also spoke at the home of former Bain Capital executive and Olympic organizer Fraser Bullock, Chaffetz said. The next day he went hiking at Deer Valley with Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus.

Sen. Orrin Hatch said there was a strong bench of candidates for Romney to choose from, but he is "thrilled" that he selected Ryan.

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"Paul is a very smart, principled and caring thinker who, like Mitt, understands the crossroads we are at as a nation," Hatch said. "Paul’s not afraid to put forward solutions to combat President Obama’s big-government agenda and hold the president accountable for the disconnect between his rhetoric and reality."


Twitter: @RobertGehrke

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