By Justin Sink
The prominent Republicans reportedly under consideration for Mitt Romney's vice presidential nomination issued statements Saturday applauding the selection of the man who beat them out — Rep. Paul RyanPaul RyanTax professors urge House to reject impeachment of IRS chief Juan Williams: Trump's race politics will destroy GOP Rank-and-file Republicans fear lame-duck vote on pricey funding bill MORE (R-Wis.).
Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R), said late Friday that he was "not disappointed" after media outlets confirmed Ryan was Romney's choice.
"I didn't enter this thinking I was going to be the vice presidential candidate, so I'm not disappointed," Pawlenty said to reporters late Friday in Manchester, N.H., NBC News reported.
"I'm excited about his candidacy, and I'm excited about having him be the next president," Pawlenty said.
Sen. Marco RubioMarco RubioRank-and-file Republicans fear lame-duck vote on pricey funding bill Dems' Florida Senate primary nears its bitter end Would internet transition have an impact on current US election? MORE (R-Fla.) said he looked forward to campaigning with the pair in the fall, and predicted they would win in November.
"Throughout his life, Mitt Romney has made great decisions, and choosing Paul Ryan as his running mate is a truly inspired choice," Rubio said. "I got to know Paul during my Senate campaign when he endorsed me early on when I was still considered a long shot. Paul Ryan is a courageous reformer who understands our nation's challenges, has proposed bold policy solutions to solve them, and has shown the courage to stand up to President Obama and other Washington politicians trying to tear him down."
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) said the new Republican ticket would be uniquely qualified to address the nation's financial struggles.
"With Paul Ryan on the ticket this is a team that understands the economic stagnation our country has been facing the last four years and the urgency with which we need to change course," Christie said in a statement. "The Romney-Ryan team is uniquely positioned to make the tough choices necessary to confront our fiscal challenges and get results."
Most Republicans echoed the financial theme, heralding Ryan's experience as House Budget Committee chairman. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R), who introduced Romney and Ryan at their debut Saturday morning in Norfolk, Va., said in a statement that "the Romney-Ryan team will get our fiscal house in order, our economy back on track and Americans back to work."
"Paul Ryan is a tremendous choice to serve as the Republican nominee for vice president of the United States," McDonnell said. "In selecting a bold, innovative thinker, Mitt Romney has ensured that his campaign — and ultimately his administration— will be led by individuals with courage, determination, judgment, and wisdom."
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), who many veepstakes watchers had pegged along with Pawlenty, Ryan, and Sen. Rob PortmanRob PortmanThe Trail 2016: On the fringe McConnell: Senate won't take up TPP this year Senate Dems' campaign arm knocks GOP for Trump support MORE (R-Ohio) as having made the final cut, heralded Ryan's "courage of his convictions."
"Paul is a good friend and one of the smartest guys I served with in Congress," Jindal said in a statement.
And Portman called Ryan a "great choice" according to The Associated Press. The Ohio senator pledged to work hard to help the ticket carry the Buckeye State in November, and he heralded Ryan as "an accomplished public servant and a leading voice on the most pressing issues facing our country."
Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who was the focus of speculation after a well-received speech at a GOP donor retreat, called Ryan a “bold and inspiring choice,” and said he would help Romney restore America’s leadership abroad.
“Congressman Ryan shares the belief that American leadership is vital to a more peaceful and prosperous world,” said Rice. “He will help to restore America at home so that we can lead again because he understands that America is an exceptional and indispensable nation on the world stage."
This story was last updated at 3:16 p.m.