For the many Republicans who gathered at Paul Ryan’s Tuesday visit to the in West Chester, the current state of the economy was a huge issue.
Between 2,000 and 3,000 people attended the event, campaign volunteers estimated. Many present also expressed concern about the need for smaller government and about entitlement programs and their sustainability.
“I’m concerned about the economy, as everybody is,” said Chet Walker, of Birmingham Township, when asked why he’s supporting the Mitt Romney/Paul Ryan ticket. “And about the job situation.”
Walker added he was disappointed in the Democrats who protested outside and who went in to disrupt Ryan’s speech.
“I think he understands the severity of the situation this country’s in,” said Duane Pettis, of Bristol. “As conservative as he is, he has a bipartisan plan… I think it’s a really good middle ground. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very conservative, but you have to start somewhere.”
Pettis voted for a third-party candidate in the last presidential election and later regretted it.
“There’s too much on the line,” Pettis said. “I would vote for anybody over Obama.”
Susan Birch and Barbara Albright, both of West Bradford, said they were there to hear more from Ryan. Albright said she was glad of Ryan’s plans to lower spending and lower taxes.
“I think that Ryan brings fresh ideas—yet time-tested solutions—to our economic woes,” Birch said.
Margie Diasio, of Montgomery Township, also said she was supporting Ryan because of his plan for the economy.
“He knows his numbers and understands what’s wrong with the economy,” Diasio said. “He brings to the table these solutions.”
West Chester resident Bob Whetstone said he feels misrepresented by the current Barack Obama/Joe Biden administration.
“I like what Romney and Ryan represent,” Whetstone said. “Small government, a controlled economy—all the things I’m concerned about.”
Though Lower Merion Township Commissioner Scott Zelov (Ward 10—Bryn Mawr, Haverford and Gladwyne) was unable to attend the Ryan event, he did say Ryan is a “superb choice for vice president.”
“He has a proven track record of proposing solutions to solve problems,” Zelov said. “The policies of Romney/Ryan will lead to economic growth and will increase employment… Paul Ryan wants to save entitlements so they are affordable for our future.”
Dan Van Ryn of West Chester attended the event with coworkers who, like him, were curious and excited about this year’s Republican ticket.
“I like what I’ve heard so far,” Van Ryn said. “But when does the action start and the talking stop?”