Congressional Republican leaders praised Mitt Romney’s selection of Rep. Paul Ryan for the GOP ticket, saying the seven-term lawmaker would help the party provide a stark contrast with President Obama’s failed economic policies and energize the conservative base.
In a statement released by the campaign, House Speaker Boehner (R-Ohio) described Ryan (R-Wis.) as a “reformer and a proven leader” and said he would “a great partner to Governor Romney in his efforts to get our country, and our economy, back on track.”
Boehner said Ryan would be particularly effective in honing the presumptive GOP nominee’s message on the economy, which voters say is the most important issue this election.
Boehner added that he was proud to call Ryan “a friend” and vowed that he would do “everything in my power to make sure that he and Mitt Romney — along with our entire Republican ticket — are well positioned to win in November."
Senate Majority Leader McConnell (R-Ky.) said Romney’s decision revealed that he is "determined to confront a host of growing crises that President Obama has ignored."
"Where the current President has simply refused to act, Gov. Romney has now pledged to lead," he said in a statement.
House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) joined Boehner in praising his fellow colleague. He said Ryan had "dedicated his career to promoting ideas of economic growth and fiscal responsibility."
McCarthy said the move showed that Romney "possesses the leadership and vision to get this country back on the right path."
Boehner and McCarthy have worked closely with Ryan, who as head of the House Budget Committee has been the driving force behind the budgets passed by the GOP-controlled chamber.
Democrats and Obama are expected to make those budget plans, which cut spending by $5 trillion and would reform Medicare into a subsidized private-insurance system, a central issue in the campaign.
Boehner has publically defended Ryan in the past, calling those Ryan budgets a “real vision” for how the GOP would govern if the party had more power in Washington.
Many GOP staffers with close ties to Boehner are also working with the Romney campaign.
Michael Steel, a Boehner spokesman, will become a staffer for Ryan, a campaign aide confirmed Saturday.
Brendan Buck, another Boehner spokesman, also joined the Romney campaign; and Kevin Madden, one of Romney’s top advisers, first worked on Boehner’s press team.
Posted at 12:04 p.m. and has been updated.