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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Zac in Tampa - Paul Ryan's Day

Wisconsin Vote Blog

Zac in Tampa - Paul Ryan's Day

Zac Schultz

Tampa's focus has turned to Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan. Ryan will deliver the keynote address on Day 3 of the convention. We got our first glimpse of Ryan this afternoon at A Tribute To Wisconsin, a special beer and brats party held for the Wisconsin delegation at one of the massive party tents set up near the Forum. With a huge sound system and plenty of space, the Wisconsin delegation looked scattered, and the German polka band brought in for entertainment looked out of place. But they all rushed the stage when Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch introduced Paul Ryan and his wife Janna.

Ryan didn't stay long, making just a few short remarks to the crowd, commenting the increasing number of Cheeseheads he's seeing on the campaign trail, "Hey everybody. We just wanted to come by and say Hi. You made me feel at home with the Cheesehead. We’re doing these rallies all across the country and people are coming out of the woodwork with their cheeseheads on all over America. It really is a story of Cheesehead domination."

Ryan said he was saving his voice for his big speech tonight, and he left the stage by thanking the guests and asking them to "Have a beer on us."

Even the Democrats are talking Ryan. As I was walking through security I noticed I was behind a familiar figure. Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett is best known for losing the last two elections to Gov. Scott Walker, but today he was in town to talk about Paul Ryan and his Medicare voucher plan. Barrett flew in just for the day and is already back in Wisconsin. Barrett went up to radio row and we found him doing a radio interview with Geraldo. Barrett and Ryan were in Congress together from 1998 to 2002, and their offices were next to each other. "I know Paul Ryan. He’s an affable guy, a very articulate spokesperson for the Romney arguments. I just happen to think that they’re wrong."

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