U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, youthful yet experienced in national politics — and with a respectable record in Congress — has not yet closed the door on his own possible White House bid in 2016.
In an interview with CBS's Charlie Rose, Ryan, 44, called on his party to broaden its tent as it competes with Democrats disillusioned over Obama and seeks to include supporters not typically embracing the right, USA Today reported
"What matters to me is that we get the policies right," the eight-term Wisconsin lawmaker said. "What matters is that we offer people an alternative."
Could such an alternative be him? Rose probed. "It may. I don't know," responded Ryan who said he hasn't made up his mind on whether to step into a race after serving as Mitt Romney's vice presidential running mate in 2012.
For now, USA Today noted, Ryan, who chairs the House Budget Committee, is seeking to head the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, hoping such a valuable post would allow him to use his skills in reforming the nation's tax laws.
Political observers are watching the chess game being played out for the GOP as Democrats begin a slow-burn rally around Hillary Clinton's 2016 candidacy and Republicans seek to coalesce around someone who could run a credible race against her, if indeed she does decide to continue her political life.
Of such speculation, the Washington Post's
Jennifer Rubin wrote: "If former Florida governor Jeb Bush and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie don’t run or don’t seem viable if they do, the pressure on Ryan from reform-minded moderate and conservative Republicans, as well as big donors, will be intense."
As recently as mid-August, Ryan was touting the virtues of his former running mate, Mitt Romney, even as the former Massachusetts governor has pretty much dismissed any talk that he will again take a run at the White House, the Associated Press reported
As Ryan teased Romney that "third time's the charm," the 2012 Republican nominee, meeting up with his former running mate for the first time at a Chicago book event at the city's Union League Club, tossed out a casual endorsement, noting that Ryan "wouldn't be a bad president."
While Ryan has been an outspoken critic of President Barack Obama's handling of terrorism in Iraq and Syria, he did note that he believes the commander in chief's current strategy against the Islamic State is the right way to go, CBS News noted
"I think the president is getting the right policy. I think he's doing the right thing now," Ryan told the network on Monday as lawmakers unite against the global advance of ISIS.
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