By Jeff Girod
As a country, we scratched our heads and asked, “Ryan . . . Ryan . . . You mean the guy in all those Tom Clancy spy books and movies?” But no, unfortunately Romney’s pick for VP has never defeated a Russian submarine crew, saved the world from nuclear disaster or been portrayed by a badass Harrison Ford.
Paul Ryan is actually—performing frantic Google search—a U.S. Representative from Wisconsin, a seven-term congressman and “an ardent conservative and devoted budget cutter,” according to the Associated Press. What fun!
Also, Paul Ryan is 42, has a hairline like an action figure and, unless he’s a gajillionaire or made completely out of solid gold, is probably worth less than Mitt Romney’s butler.
Not that it matters. Paul Ryan’s brain could be filled with jellybeans or a million tiny laser-shooting robot spiders. It’s not like he’s running for anything important. He’s just a nominee for crummy ol‘ vice president.
Percentages say if Romney is ever elected president, Paul Ryan’s job will be to stand in a corner of the Oval Office and try not to scuff anything that belonged to George Washington.
The VP is just someone who orbits near the taller, more qualified presidential candidate and, by comparison, makes him seem more interesting and likeable. Romney could have announced he had selected the Pizza Hut delivery kid as his VP and we’d all think, “Well, Pizza Hut does have those delicious breadsticks. Maybe I will vote for Romney.”
Paul Ryan is exactly what Romney needs: someone who isn’t going to say much or get in the way and can provide extra shade on a hot summer’s day. Whenever you see Paul Ryan with Romney, just imagine a giant fern.
Nobody expects a vice president to become president, and it’s just as well. Consider a “before” and “after” weight loss photo, but instead of a fat person, the potential president is standing next to somebody you would never trust with a Hot Pocket, let alone your country.
Obama’s current vice president, Joe Biden, couldn’t run his way out of a pair of pants, let alone 50 states. Former President George Bush’s VP, Dick Cheney, was so maniacal he would’ve spent his entire time as president building a giant death ray or pureeing kindergartners into oil.
Sarah Palin was once a vice presidential candidate. So was John Edwards. I would rather let a horny, drunken, lobotomized monkey be responsible for our democracy than those two chuckleheads.
In the history of our country, how many VPs have actually had to swoop in and assume the presidency for the Queso Grande? I’m remembering Watergate and that Abraham Lincoln thingie . . . So twice? Maybe three or four times if you sprinkle in a few more impeachments, untimely presidential deaths and the fact that I get most of my history from Denny’s placemats.
You can’t even vote for a vice president. He or she is just slapped on the political ticket automatically, like a travel-sized toothpaste shrink-wrapped for free to your bottle of mouthwash.
And after 44 presidents, I think it’s time we dropped the charade of vice presidents and expanded the parameters of who can hold the thankless, pointless job. Also, the vice president needs to start being way, way hotter.
Maybe vice president is an honorary title that changes every week, like a guest host on Saturday Night Live. “Join us next week when Modern Family’s Sofia Vergara is one heartbeat away from being capable of bombing Canada.”
Or maybe the vice president changes daily—hourly eve—and it doesn’t have to be human. For example, today’s vice president was a ham and cheese sandwich that Obama relieved of command around lunchtime.
If presidential candidates want us to start taking them seriously, they need to start taking us seriously. Forget Paul Ryan. Sure, he’s the “safe” choice who’s tough on important issues I can’t name right now. But how about a vice president we can all rally around?
I’m thinking about a wish-granting talking pizza. Or even better . . . TWO wish-granting, talking pizzas.
Contact Jeff Girod at firstname.lastname@example.org.