JANESVILLE, Wis. -- Campaigning for the GOP nominee in his home state with just 100 days before the presidential election, Congressman Paul Ryan said he is confident Mitt Romney can win here in the Badger State this November.
"We haven't gone Republican on top of the ticket since 1984 but we think this time is different. We think it’s different because people in Wisconsin are tired of the direction Washington is going. They don't the president's policies have worked," Ryan told NBC News in an interview Sunday evening. They think, “this is not the uniter. This is not the hope and change. This is a man who is dividing us, who is giving us terrible economic policies, who is growing government, who is growing the debt, and that just doesn't rub right with Wisconsinites."
And the Republican National Committee Chairman predicted victory as well:
"If we win Wisconsin, I think it is lights out for Barack Obama," Chairman Reince Preibus told reporters in Waukesha.
Addressing crowds at Victory Centers throughout Wisconsin this weekend, Rep. Ryan was joined at points by Sen. Ron Johnson and the RNC Chairman, who is originally from Wisconsin. These events – complete with an official Romney bus -- were part of a big surrogate push throughout the country while Romney is overseas.
"This is a national campaign. All these battleground states, what we want to do is get the message out, President Obama's policies aren't working, we need to go a different direction and we also want to thank all our volunteers," Ryan said -- avoiding the question if this surrogate blitz is really a tryout to be Romney's vice presidential pick.
Sen. Johnson weighed in briefly on the VP speculation.
"I think Paul would do a phenomenal job as vice president. Nice thing that Gov. Romney has a lot of great choices. So I've got faith that he'll choose a good one," the senator said.
But Rep. Ryan, who earlier in the day attended the Dousman Derby Days parade and fair where he participated in the 2012 Wisconsin State Frog Jump contest, continued to avoid any talk of being on Romney's ticket.
"I don't think it does the Romney campaign any help or favors to speculate or feed the speculation on this stuff so that's why I just don't make comments about it," he said when asked if he was a 'dark horse' for Romney to select.
The Wisconsin Congressman heads to the 19th District of Florida Monday to campaign for Chauncey Goss who is running for Congress before heading back to Washington, DC for the week.