United States President Barack Obama on Monday welcomed Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan to the presidential race but added that he fundamentally disagrees with his vision, which, if implemented, would take the nation backward.
"Just last morning, my opponent chose his running mate, the ideological leader of the Republicans in Congress Mr Paul Ryan. I want to congratulate Congressman Ryan," Obama said at a campaign event in Chicago.
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney picked Ryan on Saturday as his running mate. Ryan has been a strong opponent of Obama's economic plan.
In his first remarks on Ryan, Obama said, "I know him. I welcome him to the race. Congressman Ryan is a decent man. He is a family man. He is an articulate spokesman for Governor Romney's vision. But it is a vision that I fundamentally disagree with."
"My opponent and Congressman Ryan and their allies in Congress, they all believe that if we just get rid of more regulations on big corporations and we give more tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans, it will lead to jobs and prosperity for everybody else. That's what they are proposing," he said.
"That's where they'll take us if they win," he said.
At another election campaign event in Chicago, Obama said the Romney-Ryan team presents a different vision for the country than that of his.
"You have a stark choice -- as stark as we have seen in a generation at least -- between two fundamentally different visions about how we move this country forward," he said.
"On the one hand, Romney, and now his running mate, Paul Ryan, fundamentally believe that if folks at the top are doing well and we eliminate regulations that help on clean air and clean water and help to constrain how an insurance company operates, or increased transparency on Wall Street, that somehow prosperity will come roaring back and will trickle down to everybody," Obama said.
There are going to be a whole host of other issues in which the arguments are almost as stark, he said.
"I believe that women should have control over their health care choices. Romney and Ryan have a different view. I believe it was right to end 'don't ask, don't tell' and let anybody who loves this country fight for this country," he said.
"I believe in investing in clean energy, that we should not just restrict our energy approach to fossil fuels. Romney and Congressman Ryan have a different view. On international policy, I think ending the war in Iraq was the right thing to do. Governor Romney disagrees," he said.