The weekend announcement by Mitt Romney adding Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan to his ticket has all the focus on the Midwest – those are the states the GOP presidential nominee seems to be going after, and those are the states that will get most of the attention in the coming weeks.
But Ryan has a tie to the Keystone State in his close friend Rep. Jim Gerlach (R-Chester), whose friendship has gone back since they began serving together, said Gerlach senior adviser Vince Galko.
“They’ve had a long friendship.”
He said the pair are quite close, as both serve together on the House Ways and Means Committee – and are often seen at the House gym together working out.
“They’re fitness guys,” Galko said.
Gerlach also supported Ryan’s controversial budget proposal.
But the friendship goes both ways. Ryan has helped Gerlach as well, including through a fundraiser held for the Chester Congressman July 9 in Valley Forge.
Galko said the luncheon was attended by more than 200 people, and raised well over $100,000.
While the friendship doesn’t mean that PA will get more play before the general election, it does mean the Romney-Ryan ticket may have a vocal campaign surrogate on their side in eastern PA, influencing votes and trying to put a dent in the Commonwealth’s current status as “leans Dem.”