Image: Paul Ryan
Sara D. Davis  /  AP
Republican vice presidential candidate, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., speaks at a campaign event at East Carolina University, Monday, Sept. 3, 2012, in Greenville, N.C.
NBC News
updated 9/4/2012 1:13:23 PM ET 2012-09-04T17:13:23

Just across the state from where the Democratic National Convention is set to begin tomorrow, Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan warned North Carolinians not to believe what President Obama says in Charlotte.

“Let me quote President Obama four years ago: ‘If you don’t have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from.’ Ladies and gentleman, that is exactly what Barack Obama is doing today. You see, the president has no record to run on,” Ryan said here on the campus of East Carolina University. “In fact, every president since the Great Depression who asked Americans to send them into a second term, could say that you are better off today than you were four years ago -- except for Jimmy Carter and for President Barack Obama.”

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The Wisconsin congressman added, “So when you take a look at what we are going to hear in Charlotte today, the president can say a lot of things, and he will. But he can’t tell you that you are better off. Simply put, the Jimmy Carter years look like the good old days compared to where we are right now.”

The GOP is in a full-force bracketing effort down in the Tar Heel state asking “Are you better off than you were four years ago?”

Vice President Joe Biden was originally planning on bracketing the RNC convention in Tampa, Fla., last week, but his plans were canceled after the threat of Hurricane Issac.

Ryan urged the couple thousand people in Greenville who turned out on Labor Day to hear him speak not to fall for the Democrats' message in November.

“We’re going to hear a lot of words from Charlotte this week. But here’s the kind of words we’re not gonna hear: We’re not going to hear evidence and facts about how people are better off. You see ,the president cannot run on this record. He’s run out of ideas,” he said. “And so that is why he’s going to be running a campaign based on envy and division, based on frustration and anger. Hope and change has now become attack and blame.”

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A new Elon University poll released Monday, finds Mitt Romney has a slight lead in North Carolina with 47% supporting him compared with 43% backing Obama. The Republican VP nominee says this state could make the difference on Nov. 6.

“Friends, North Carolina is crucial. Eastern North Carolina is crucial. This is one of those kinds of elections where a handful of states might make the determination not just of who your next governor is going to be or just who your next president is going to be but what kind of land your kids will inherit,” Ryan said inside ECU’s student recreation center. “This is it and we can do this."

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Video: Paul Ryan: Obama made ‘broken promises’

  1. Closed captioning of: Paul Ryan: Obama made ‘broken promises’

    >> nice to have you on the show. good morning.

    >> good to be with you, matt.

    >> thank you very much. your speech last wednesday night at the convention is still getting a lot of attention. there are some people saying you played a little fast and loose with the truth on certain key elements. i'm not just talking about democratic analysts but independent fact checkers. would you concede while many of the things you said were effective, some were not completely accurate?

    >> no, not in the least actually. what they are trying to suggest is that i said barack obama was responsible for the plan shut down in janesville . that's not what i was saying. read the speech. what i was saying is the president ought to be held to account for prone promises. after the plant was shut down he said he would lead efforts to restart the plant. it's still idle. lots of people i grew up with that lost their jobs there still don't have jobs there. my point was not to label it his plant shutdown but another example of his broken proms. in 2008 he traveled all around the country making promises he would break just like in janesville .

    >> in my opinion it seemed like you unmistakably tried to link the president's promise to the plant which you know closed before he became president.

    >> the promise was he was going to open the plant. the promise was he was going to lead an effort to retool the plant so people would be open and go back to work for 100 years. the point is he filled people with hope traveling around the country running for president making grandiose promises which are not in true. he said he would cut deficit in half, didn't do that. i know they don't like the fact we pony these facts out that they made a lot of promises that did not materialize. janesville was one more example of that.

    >> let's talk about the example using simpson bows recommendation. they came back with an urgent report, thanked them, sent them on their way and did nothing. you were one of the seven members of that panel and you voted against sending those recommendations to the senate basically killing any further action on them. didn't you owe it to the people in that room to say that as well?

    >> but if you read the next paragraph, i said republicans offered alternatives. so here is my point. just because i didn't like that report, because i don't think it solved the problem, i didn't think it fixed the problem of runaway entitlement spending, i authored and passed through the house an alternative. what we did was took the things we liked in simpson -bowles. the president didn't do that, offer a budget to fix the problem. the senate hasn't passed a budget in three years. on simpson -bowles, it's not whether it's a good or bad plan, you owe the country the alternative, which is what we did, not what president obama did. we're going to have a debt crisis and the president hasn't shown the leadership. he needs to to prevent that from happening.

    >> let me ask about something not mentioned in your speech or governor romney's speech in the convention, that's the war in afghanistan . that's been a lot of our time, attention anemone and sacrifices of men and women over the last 11 years. you didn't mention it once, neither did governor romney. he's asking americans to make him the next commander in chief. how can you not remember that war?

    >> i think you have to remember the day before that speech mitt romney wept to the american legion and gave a lengthy speech on the topic. he was invited, did a lengthy speech the day before.

    >> on a more personal note you know over the next couple months you and your family are going to face enormous scrutiny. you have a wife and three young children. are you at all worried about the impact this race and this process will have on your family?

    >> jan and i discussed that quite a bit. months ago when i agreed to go through the vetting process, we talked about it, we prayed about it. we came to the conclusion this is such a unique time in our country's history that we really have a chance to get this country on the right track. we're on the wrong track. people are not better off than they were four years ago. because of the enormity of the challenges facing the country and the leadership we try to provide, we just think it's such a unique moment we should serve in this capacity. sure, you always worry about your children. you always worry about your wife and your family. but we care so deeply about this country, about getting people back to work, about turning things around that we're willing to do this.

    >> congressman paul ryan , the vice presidential candidate on the republican side . congressman, it's nice of you to spend time with us this morning.

    >> thanks, matt, take care.


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