Three days after tapping Paul Ryan as his running-mate, Mitt Romneywill apparently anoint Chris Christie as the Republican convention’s keynote speaker later today. A good case can be made that he got these picks backwards.
The early returns on his Ryan selection aren’t encouraging, at least if you’re a Republican. Before his selection, there was already evidence that he would be a polarizing presence on a national ticket. In polling this spring, more than 40 percent of Americans didn’t know who the Wisconsin congressman is, but among those who recognized his name, 28 percent viewed him favorably and 29 percent saw him unfavorably. Among independents, his favorable/unfavorable score was 21-26 percent.
Initial polling in the wake of Saturday’s announcement suggests the same pattern is holding as more voters learn about Ryan. An ABC poll released Monday gave him a shaky 38-33 percent favorable mark, while a USA Today/Gallup survey found slightly more voters rating calling him a “fair” or “poor” V.P. choice than an “excellent” or “pretty good” one – the worst marks for a newly minted running-mate since Dan Quayle in 1988.
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