This post has been updated.
They like him — they really like him. But there are signs the GOP base isn’t showering it’s new VP nominee with affection, or cash, the way it did for Sarah Palin.
There’s no doubt Mitt Romney fired up the less-than-fully enthused conservative electorate with the Ryan pick over the weekend. Opening rallies were packed, conservative pundits were thrilled and anecdotal evidence from the ground showed Republican voters are stoked to start talking about the Ryan budget.
But there are signs Ryan doesn’t approach Palin, who burst on the scene with such ferocity in 2008 that viewers of her debut speech at the GOP convention had to wear shades, on the enthusiasm meter. After 48 hours of Romney-Ryan fever, a pair of data points that suggests the VP fervor is not as high:
Reports at the time show Palin’s first weekend as McCain’s running mate brought in $10 million to the McCain campaign. The full results of Ryan’s first weekend aren’t in, but so far the Romney campaign has reported publicly that it hauled in more than $5 million online.
It’s worth noting that the 2008 reporting on the McCain fundraising covers Friday-Sunday, while Ryan was announced first thing Saturday morning. Palin was officially introduced midday Friday.
A new USA Today-Gallup poll shows “Americans rating [Ryan’s] selection more unfavorably than any pick since at least 2000, according to a new poll.” Forty-six percent of poll respondents in 2008 rated their initial reaction to Palin “excellent or pretty good.” For Ryan, the number is just 39 percent.
A chart showing where Ryan appears when rated against fellow VP picks, from the Post: