Sunday morning's talking heads political programming became flooded with the 2012 election topic du jour, presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's choice of Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan as his No. 2. While the prospects of the Romney-Ryan ticket remained a point of contention, all agreed the selection signaled the 2012 election will be a big-picture battle over the role of government in the populace's life.

The message was that this is a big election, and it is about big issues, and it needs to be serious, Romney adviser Ed Gillespie said on CNN's State Of The Union. We're not going to ... be distracted by some of these little things that the Obama campaign seems to constantly want to be putting out there.

Advisors for the Romney campaign and incumbent President Barack Obama hit the airwaves, trying to guide the discussion over the Wisconsin's representative's influence on the race. Democrats appeared to lick their lips at the prospect of laying Ryan's plans for Medicare and Medicaid on the table, with the Obama campaign seeing it a decisive factor that will drive many older and lower-income Americans to the incumbent.

Obama's senior campaign advisor David Axelrod depicted Ryan's budgetary proposals and policies as out of touch, the natural offspring of a right-wing ideologue, on ABC's This Week.

He constructed a budget that, like Romney, would lavish trillions of dollars of tax cuts, most of them on the wealthy, would raise the burden on the middle class, would cut back things deeply like student loans, and research and development, and things we need to grow the economy, Axelrod said. He is outside the mainstream, but ... this was a defining choice for Mitt Romney, and now it's also a clarifying choice for the American people.