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Walker Says Romney Needs More Passion — and More Paul Ryan

Wisconsin governor says he wants Republican presidential candidate to talk directly to voters — with a feisty Paul Ryan firing up the crowd for him.

“Passion” is at the heart of the presidential campaign, Gov. Scott Walker believes, and he said Thursday Wisconsin Republicans have enough of it to carry the state for presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

But, he said, Romney needs to show more of that passion — and one way to bring it out would be to campaign more with a pumped up U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan running at his side.

Walker said he knows Romney to be a man of passion, and now, with just less than six weeks left in the campaign, he needs to get out and show it.

“I love seeing Paul Ryan on the stump,” Walker said. “I want to see more of the enthusiasm I saw in Waukesha the day after he was announced, when I saw Mitt and Paul together — because I not only saw Paul pumped up, I saw Mitt Romney pumped up.

“I’ve seen it in Janesville, I’ve seen it in Waukesha, I want to see him more in Wisconsin because this is going to be a key state, and I want to see that kind of passion," the governor said.

“For anybody who’s been at those events,” Walker said, “there’s no doubt that Mitt Romney has passion. I just think nationally, he’s got to stop worrying about the national press and more time literally talking to folks like all of you here.

“I thinks folks in our states, whether it’s here or Ohio or anywhere else, want to hone in and focus about what’s at stake, and I think if Mitt Romney’s has a chance to tell that story, he’s got an impassioned story, he’s got a great story and… he’s got a plan.”

Preibus Still Confident About Romney's Chances Here

Declaring that President Barack Obama has “a Wisconsin problem,” Walker, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus did their best to fire up their grassroots base during a conference call and press conference in Wauwatosa.

Priebus, himself from Wisconsin, talked to teams at all 25 Republican campaign centers in the state, starting with a football analogy to rally the troops.

Related: You're invited to Patch's presidential debate viewing party

Seeming to acknowledge recent polls that have shown Romney beginning to lag, Preibus said: “In any race that’s within a field goal or four points, the ground game can make up everything — and we have been accustomed to crushing the Democrats on the ground in Wisconsin. We’re going to do it again.

“I want to see more of the enthusiasm I saw in Waukesha the day after (Ryan) was announced, when I saw Mitt and Paul together."

“At the end of the day, this is what will make the difference between winning Wisconsin and losing Wisconsin – it’ll all come down to the ground game," Preibus added. "And you know, putting those 10 electoral votes up on the board for the red team is something that will give us so many options in making sure that we get to 270 electoral votes.”

Priebus announced that Republican “Victory Centers” across the state would this week surpass 1 million voter contacts — and Walker said that was four times what state Democrats could claim.

Touting a Republican shift from top-down, broadcast advertising-driven campaigning four years ago, Walker said that this year grassroots supporters had made six times as many phone calls and done 72 times more door-to-door visits than in 2008.

In response, Gillian Morris, Wisconsin press secretary for Obama for America, said in a statement: “Given that Mitt Romney is mired in the roughest three-week stretch of a GOP presidential campaign in history, it doesn’t surprise us at all that they would tout unverifiable numbers that have nothing to do with restoring economic security for the middle class.

"Building economic prosperity from the middle-class out is where the president’s focus has been since he was sworn in, and that’s where it will remain for the final weeks of this campaign.”

Wisconsin to Play a Key Role in Race

Walker referred to a Thursday morning report in the Wall Street Journal that indicated Romney could still win even if Obama wins Ohio. But he would need to win Wisconsin, above all, to do it. The Journal report actually states that for Romney to win without Ohio, he would need to sweep all the other swing states, Wisconsin included.

Walker said that Wisconsin is ahead of other states in grassroots organizing and that he wanted to see that passion spread through the national campaign.

“What we found when we went around in May and June to the Victory Centers throughout the state — (First Lady Tonette Walker) used to love to ask this question: ‘How many people have never been involved in a campaign before?’ And we’d get about half the room, half the Victory Center would raise their hand.

“People would tell me, ‘You know what? There’s just too much at stake not to get involved.”

Whether all that passion and enthusiasm can win Wisconsin, much less the nation, remains to be seen.

State Sen. Mary Lazich, who also was in attendance, was clearly pumped by the energy around her, but said, “Yes, I wish we could bottle some of it up and send it everywhere.”

James R Hoffa October 01, 2012 at 07:00 PM
@morninmist - Where's the math on Obama's non-plan? And let's not forget that the CBO keeps on revising the costs of Obamacare upward every time we turn around! Ryan's just saving the good stuff for the debate!
John Wilson October 01, 2012 at 11:31 PM
JRH – No wonder you are so into RETRO... Lyin’ “Ryan's just saving the good stuff for the debate!" Of course, he is… When asked by Chris Wallace on Faux News Sunday – not exactly a Liberal bastion of ideology or TRUTH – to explain how cutting taxes 20% and adding 5T to the deficit is going to work to balance the budget. Lyin’ Ryan, the thin-skinned, arrogant, preppy boy, became very angry, frustrated, and full of hubris, stating, “It would take me too long to go through all of the math….” Of course, it would… I doubt if the moderator on October 11th is going to let Lyin’ Ryan get by with that; just don’t look for a long debate here, Lyin’ Ryan will probably start another record breaking marathon, getting off of the stage and running back to Janesville to his Oscar-Meyer Weiner mobile. This Biden/Lyin’ Ryan debate is destined to be the shortest debate in history.
James R Hoffa October 02, 2012 at 06:06 AM
@Lyin' John Wilson and @Lyin' morninmist - The math adds up. If Romney's plan creates the kind of job growth that he's projecting, 12M new private sector jobs, we'll have12M more people paying into the system. With 12M more people working, they won't be draining from the system any longer either - so we'll actually be able to cut spending. With the combination of additional revenues and decreased spending, it will be possible to lower the marginal rates, without affecting middle/working class exemptions and deductions, and experience revenue neutrality - not that we necessarily need revenue neutrality, as Romney/Ryan plan to cut a lot more spending from the federal budget. It works. Why Ryan couldn't explain it this way when being interviewed by Chris Wallace on Sunday is beyond Hoffa - maybe Ryan was just having an off day. Granted, Hoffa prefers his proposed federal tax plan over Romney's, it's definitely better than the alternative of higher taxes across the board that is being offered by Obama and the Dems! SUCK IT!!!
James R Hoffa October 02, 2012 at 06:14 AM
@Lyin' John Wilson & @Lyin' morninmist - That's just Supreme Court code for 'the Court of Appeals will validate the law as constitutional, so we don't need to get involved.' Just because the S. Court refused to take the case straight from the Circuit Court doesn't mean that you blue fisters have won the war on this issue - Hoffa hopes that you guys realize this. There's still an appeal to the Court of Appeals, where the Circuit Court's decision will be reversed and the law will be upheld as constitutional, and implemented by the Walker administration shortly thereafter! Voter ID will become a reality - better get used to it!!! Or will you blue fisters throw another temper tantrum?
John Wilson October 02, 2012 at 09:48 PM
JRH – Yes, that JRH predicted President Obama’s ACA, would be declared Unconstitutional too… Judge John Robert's, the Chief Supreme Court Justice ruled it constitutional. Then JRH spent the better part of 4-days arguing on the Patch that HE – the ever-bloviating JRH – had found a flaw in Judge Robert’s reasoning – and then, and then, he was going to file astounding court appeals, put forth amazing legal theories and precedents and he would, once-and-for-all- prove that President Obama’s ACA was Unconstitutional. Moreover, after being forced [by the great John Wilson] to actually read the decision – he still bloviated for a day or two – and then, after finally finishing the final stage of grief, he accepted the FACT that he had no basis for any appeal… Like Bush: All hat, no cowboy… “There's still an appeal to the Court of Appeals, where the Circuit Court's decision will be reversed and the law will be upheld as constitutional, and implemented by the Walker administration shortly thereafter! Voter ID will become a reality - better get used to it!!! Or will you blue fisters throw another temper tantrum?" Therefore, it would be most wise to take anything you read from this fine fellow with extreme caution… I really think JRH has enough passion for the entire GOP... it is intellect that is lacking here...

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