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Nation/World

August 11, 2012

Romney picks Ryan for running mate

NORLFOLK, Va. — Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has picked Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan to be his running mate, according to a Republican with knowledge of the development. They will appear together Saturday in Norfolk, Va., at the start of a four-state bus tour to introduce the newly minted GOP ticket to the nation.

The official spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because this person was not authorized to disclose the decision.

In a statement issued Friday night, Romney's campaign would say only that the running mate would be revealed at 9 a.m. EDT at the Nauticus Museum. Berthed at the museum is the USS Wisconsin — which offered a hint about Romney's choice.

Before Romney's team issued the statement, all signs seemed to point to Ryan, the seven-term Wisconsin congressman whose nomination could help assuage the conservative base of the party that has been reluctant to fully embrace Romney.

Romney's preference for a team player cannot be overstated in a campaign led by an inner circle that has worked together for a decade in some cases.

Campaigning together during this spring's GOP primary, Romney and Ryan were visibly comfortable with each other on a personal and professional level. Romney eagerly shared the microphone with Ryan during campaign events, they shared hamburgers at a fast food restaurant, and the congressman played a leading role in an April Fool's joke on the Republican presidential contender.

In recent days, conservative pundits have been urging Romney to choose Ryan in large part because of his authorship of a House-backed budget plan that seeks to curb overall entitlement spending and changes Medicaid into a voucher-like system to save costs.

On Thursday, Romney fueled the buzz around Ryan, telling NBC that he wants a vice president with "a vision for the country, that adds something to the political discourse about the direction of the country."

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