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The Timeline of Romney’s Florida Folly

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In what was supposed to be the latest reset for Mitt Romney and his campaign, the selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate has turned into a disaster, especially in Florida, and we know why. Paul Ryan’s budget plan, supported by Romney, would be balanced on the backs of the middle class and seniors. Medicare would end as we know it, turning into a voucher system that would increase health costs for seniors by $3,650 a year, and if Paul Ryan had his way, an additional proposal would wipe out Social Security, turning it over to the limbo of the stock market. Floridian seniors rely on these programs after a lifetime’s worth of hard work and responsibility, and President Obama understands what’s at stake for seniors this fall, and has vowed to protect these programs that they count on every day.

From bad headlines to cancelled interview requests, we know the real reason why Romney and Ryan are fleeing Florida – they know their plan would hurt the everyday senior. America’s Go Back Team is running away from voters in Florida with questions left unanswered. Below is a timeline highlighting the path of Romney/Ryan’s Florida folly.

Timeline of Romney’s Florida Folly:

Sunday, August 12, 2012
Time: Morning 

Just one day after announcing Paul Ryan as his running mate, Florida papers pounce, questioning whether Ryan’s plan to end tax breaks for the middle class and reforms on Medicare would have an affect their campaign’s chances in November.

Ryan could be a drag on Romney in Florida
Miami Herald // Marc Caputo

Republicans are rejoicing at Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan as his vice-presidential running mate. But so are Democrats. Ryan, a Wisconsin congressman, is the architect of the Ryan budget plan that makes big changes to Medicare and Medicaid and could allow for some privatization of Social Security. And that’s widely seen as a politically risky stance in Florida, a must-win state for Republicans.  FRONT PAGE: http://ofa.bo/QeAFdo

Analysts say Ryan pick intensifies Medicare debate for Florida seniors
Palm Beach Post // George Bennett

Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate promises to intensify the debate over Medicare in senior-heavy Florida, where the issue could tip the perennial swing state’s 29 electoral votes and the presidency. Leading Florida Republicans, including Sen. Marco Rubio and former Gov. Jeb Bush, praised Romney’s choice on Saturday. Ryan’s admirers say the 42-year-old House budget chairman from Wisconsin will bring communication skills, policy smarts and intellectual heft to the debate on taxes, spending and the $16 trillion national debt. FRONT PAGE: http://ofa.bo/b3WEGK

Breaking down the Paul Ryan VP pick by assets, liabilities, questions
Tampa Bay Times // Alex Leary and Adam C Smith

Meet Paul Ryan: a young, smart and energetic face of the Republican Party. Mitt Romney shook up his campaign by picking the Wisconsin congressman as his running mate. The next three months will determine if it was the right decision and with that in mind, here are some things to consider.

Romney's VP choice could be risky in swing state Florida
Tampa Tribune // William March

Choosing Paul Ryan as his running mate, Mitt Romney made a bold statement on his campaign's central economic issues but also one that could be risky — particularly in the crucial swing state of Florida. Ryan, 42, a seven-term House member from Wisconsin, is widely viewed as the Republican Party's intellectual leader for his budget proposals, which include the most drastic alterations in Medicare and Social Security ever embraced by a national party.

Sunday, August 12, 2012
Time: 9:30 AM ET

With Florida papers receiving national attention, the Romney campaign promptly announces that Ryan will depart ways from Romney’s bus tour, avoiding any stops in the state all together.

Ryan Skips Florida, Will Focus On Great Lakes States
BuzzFeed // Zeke Miller

Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will part ways until the Republican convention at a rally in Waukesha, Wisconsin just a day after the pair joined up. Ryan will travel to Des Moines, Iowa, to visit the state fair on Monday, while Romney will continue his swing state bus tour with a stop in Florida. Romney adviser Kevin Madden denied that the campaign was keeping Ryan out of Florida because of his proposal to privatize Medicare for people under 55; tinkering with the program for the elderly has long been toxic in Florida politics.

Ryan won’t be with Romney in Florida tomorrow; is he medi-scared to visit the Sunshine State?
SaintPetersBlog // Peter Schorsch

Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will part ways until the Republican convention at a rally in Waukesha, Wisconsin just a day after the pair joined up, reports Zeke Miller of BuzzFeed. Ryan will travel to Des Moines, Iowa, to visit the state fair on Monday, while Romney will continue his swing state bus tour with a stop in Florida. Romney adviser Kevin Madden denied that the campaign was keeping Ryan out of Florida because of his proposal to privatize Medicare for people under 55; tinkering with the program for the elderly has long been toxic in Florida politics.

Sunday, August 12, 2012
Time: 2:15 PM ET

In what was billed as an “Orlando Housing Roundtable” at the home of attorney Christi Adams, Mitt Romney promptly cancels the event, citing “exhaustion from 48 hours of championing his vice presidential pick.”

Romney campaign cancels Monday visit to Orlando
Orlando Sentinel // David Breen and Mary Shanklin

Although Mitt Romney was supposed to visit Orlando on Monday, the campaign announced late Sunday that the presumed Republican presidential nominee was too exhausted to make the trip. The news came after Romney spent what one campaign official said was an exhausting 48 hours of championing his new vice presidential pick. "We've been planning this bus tour for awhile and had to adjust for stuff going on," said Jeff Bechdel, Florida communications director for the campaign. Romney was slated to stop Monday afternoon at the Conway area home of attorney Christi Adams and her finance for what was being billed as an "Orlando Housing Roundtable."

Monday, August 13, 2012
Time: 10:30 AM ET

Fresh from finishing his first campaign stop of the day in St. Augustine, the Miami New Times reported the owner of Palacios de los Jugos, the location of Romney’s rally, was once convicted and spent three years in prison for embezzling cocaine into the country. Reinaldo Bermudaz, the owner, said Secret Service “knew about my record” and it “was not a problem” prior to the event. Bermudez was also quoted, saying that if Romney is elected, he hopes he would get his voting rights restored. 

Mitt Romney's Stumping In Miami at Eatery Owned By Convicted Coke Smuggler
Miami New Times // Francisco Alvarado

Today, Mitt Romney is foregoing a Miami political campaign tradition by skipping over Versailles restaurant in Little Havana. Instead, Mittens will be hobnobbing with a convicted cocaine smuggler. The Republican presidential candidate is holding an afternoon rally at Palacios de los Jugos at 7085 Coral Way, which is owned by Reinaldo Bermudez, who served three years in federal prison after pleading guilty in 1999 to one count of conspiracy to distribute cocaine. Bermudez, AKA "El Guajiro," was a member of 12-person ring that was busted in 1997 for attempting to smuggle more than a ton of yeyo disguised as fish and soap into three South Florida ports. According to Bermudez's indictment, some of his co-conspirators had nicknames straight out of a Hollywood movie like "Ali Baba," "Skeletor," "Buckwheat" and "Stump."

Monday, August 13, 2012
Time: 12:15 PM ET

Getting wind of the story and the already terrible news surrounding this visit, Mitt Romney and his campaign abruptly appears to have cancelled all radio and television interviews throughout the state.