There’s a slang expression in the military, R&R, shorthand for “Rest and Recuperation.”
During the Korean War, it often meant 15 days in Japan. A rejuvenating get away from the 24 hour a day, 7 days a week stress of battle. A little time to take a deep breath, think about the mission, and get back to basics.
I couldn’t help but wonder if the Republicans realize what they will offer to the American people this autumn.
R&R. Romney and Ryan.
Time to get back on track. Time to take a hard look at the big picture. Time to get ready to return to the battlefield of democracy, the day to day grind of making our unique federal republic work the way the Founders intended.
Paul Ryan is a lot of things that Mitt Romney is not.
Young. A federal office holder. A Washington insider, if you will. Clearly conservative. Catholic. Pro Life. Midwestern.
But I don’t think Ryan was chosen to give Balance to the Republican ticket.
I think the choice of Paul Ryan as his running mate tells us something very important about Mitt Romney.
He knows how to choose people. He knows how to build a team. His focus is not just to win the election. He is preparing to govern the nation.
The debate over President Obama’s insistence that “you didn’t build it” is missing a very subtle distinction, which gets lost in the shouting and the sound bites.
Of course Henry Ford built Ford Motors, and Bill Gates built Microsoft and Steve Jobs built Apple. But how did they do it?
They built a team.
The genius of good leadership is the capacity to build a team. To surround yourself with good people. People who share the dream. People who believe in the mission. People who bring innovation, discernment, commitment, and courage to the table.
More than anything else, that’s what Mitt Romney will bring to the Oval Office.
In picking Paul Ryan as his running mate, Mitt Romney has demonstrated that he believes in America.
He believes in an America that isn’t afraid of hard choices.
He believes in an America that will do whatever is necessary to protect and preserve our heritage of liberty.
He believes in an America that can and will overcome the bitterness and pain of partisan bickering; an America that can survive the divisiveness of campaign name calling. Of lies. Of denunciation and demonization.
Paul Ryan is a class act. He slings no mud. Hates nobody. Disagrees without being disagreeable. He’s what they call a policy wonk. A guy who reads every word and debates the real issues. Ryan won’t be a political hatchet man, like some VP candidates in the past.
But he will bring a lot of substance to the Republican ticket.
The next 86 days will be a cacophony of political debate. Lies and rumors will cackle all over the Internet. Mountains of money will be spent trying to capture the attention and the support of American voters.
Whoever wins will have the unenviable task of reuniting the nation.
Abraham Lincoln said it best:
With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.