Ryan promises opportunity, economic growth at OU visit

By: Linda Shepard | Rochester Post | Published October 9, 2012

 Vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan visits Oakland University Oct. 8

Vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan visits Oakland University Oct. 8

Photo by Andrew Potter

Amidst an enthusiastic and vocal crowd of supporters, Wisconsin U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan talked about jobs and strong manufacturing for economic relief at Oakland University Oct. 8.


“When we grew up, you thought you could have the same job your entire life. That’s what our parents had,” the Republican vice presidential nominee said. “We are going to get manufacturing moving again. If you put the right people and policies in place, you can turn this around.”


Thousand of supporters inside and outside the OU Athletics Center O’rena cheered Ryan during his campaign stop, including musician Kid Rock, who introduced the candidate.


“You have to stand for something,” Kid Rock said, wearing a leather jacket and his trademark black hat. Rock urged all to vote in November. “So many Americans made the ultimate sacrifice to give that right,” he said. “My talent as a musician has been best utilized by entertaining our troops all over the world.”


A star-struck Ryan told the crowd, “Guess what? I got to meet Kid Rock — that’s pretty cool.”


Ryan said voters have “a big decision to make” during the upcoming election. “We’ve got big challenges in this country,” he said, criticizing President Barak Obama’s economic agenda. “He has yet to show us how we are going to get out of this debt crisis. We cannot afford four more years like the last four years.


“We want to make sure when you go to the polls, you have an affirming choice to make,” Ryan said. “We are offering specific solutions and specific ideas. We’ve shown you how we can save Medicare by getting rid of Obamacare. We are showing how to cut spending and how to balance this budget. We can’t keep mortgaging our children’s future. We need trade agreements that work for us to put us on a level playing field. If we put these policies in place, we create 12 million jobs.


“I represent southern Wisconsin,” Ryan said. “We lost four auto factories in the last four years. I come from ‘Detroit west.’ We know we need a healthy auto sector. We’ve all gotten knocked down. We want American manufacturing to have a comeback and to help our American manufacturers compete.”


U.S.  military strength must grow for peace to be achieved, Ryan said. “Our enemies are becoming more brazen,” he said. “America is projecting weakness right now. The president is proposing all these defense cuts. With Mitt Romney, we’ll have peace through strength.”


Ronna Romney McDaniel — the daughter of Ronna Romney, a former Senate candidate and former sister-in-law of Mitt Romney — lives in Northville and spoke to the crowd about the state of Michigan and its importance to her family.


“This is the state where Mitt was born and fell in love,” Romney McDaniel said. “It is the state that will put Mitt over the top and put him in the White House.” She said she hopes her fellow residents would send Ryan “off with some Michigan mojo” to his upcoming debate with Vice President Joe Biden.


Rochester Hills resident Mary Telesco was one of thousands supporting Ryan at OU. “I’m ready for a change — we need a change,” Telesco said. Ryan’s speech “was exactly what we needed to hear. We need a leader.”


In response to the visit, U.S. Reps. John Dingell and Sander Levin, along with UAW Secretary-Treasurer Dennis Williams and Michigan Democratic Party Chair Mark Brewer, scheduled a press conference “to discuss the disastrous implications of the Republicans’ plans on jobs, taxes and affordable education,” according to a statement from the Michigan Democratic Party.


“The Romney-Ryan campaign — unencumbered by facts or basic math — has embarked on an anything-goes approach to try to convince voters it has a real and tangible plan for growing the economy and stabilizing the middle class, when all they offer is a return to the failed, top-down policies that caused the recession in the first place,” the statement reads.