As newly minted GOP vice presidential candidate Paul D. Ryan prepared to campaign Saturday in Florida, the chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee said he was being given shelter because his event would be held in a private retirement community that is a Republican stronghold.
Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said that if Ryan appeared elsewhere in the state he would be hampered by his proposal to move Medicare toward privatization.
“He’s going to the senior mecca for Republicans, so I think he will probably have a pretty positive reception, because they’re putting him in about the safest place you could possibly put a Republican in Florida,” Wasserman Schultz said in an interview Friday. “They know Paul Ryan won’t play anywhere else .… Let him come down to Century Village. I would love to see how seniors in my district and Century Village would respond to him.”
She said that the GOP ticket would be harmed by Ryan’s congressional votes against the embargo on Cuba, an anathema to Cuban American voters in Florida and a stance that Ryan has since repudiated. In Florida, Obama strategists said they believed Ryan’s Medicare position would provide them with a boost, while Romney backers, well aware that the position has been unpopular, were hopeful they would be able to make their case. Democrats were also working to heighten the backlash over Ryan’s opposition to the Cuban embargo.