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Politico: Paul Ryan Faces Precarious Political Future

Image: Politico: Paul Ryan Faces Precarious Political Future

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., held his weekly press conference Thursday. (AP Photo/Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

By    |   Thursday, 29 September 2016 03:35 PM


Speaker of the House Paul Ryan is facing a precarious political future, according to an analysis in Politico.

The Wisconsin Republican would have the job of rebuilding the Republican Party, which some Republicans believe has been overrun by "anti-free trade populists who favor bombastic bomb-throwing over thoughtful policy discussions," according to Politico.

If Trump wins and Ryan keeps the speakership, Ryan must continue pushing his positions while working within Trump's system. If Clinton wins, Ryan will likely chair a smaller Republican majority in the House, and will have to cut deals with Clinton and keep conservatives happy at the same time, Politico said.

"I think, at the end of the day, it will be Paul Ryan's biggest challenge," Rep. Steve Womack, an Arkansas Republican, said.

No matter who is president, the political climate is expected to change.

"You're going to get a very unpopular president . . . and you're going to have a smaller, yet more conservative House majority. The margin for error for Republican leaders is going to be so, so thin, particularly with the motion to vacate still hanging out there," one former House Republican staffer said, referring to the mechanism conservatives used to eject Ryan's predecessor, John Boehner, from the position.

Politico said the speaker is working on a plan to revive the GOP, with public rallies to support his colleagues and policy speeches.

Ryan might be facing an uphill battle with his "Better Way" policy agenda. The National Review called it "the great ignored agenda" and said Republicans were using it "to give themselves an identity not warped by Donald Trump's gravitational pull."

Ryan was elected to Congress at age 29, was budget committee chairman at 41, Mitt Romney's running mate when he was 42, and is now the speaker at 46. He has not ruled out running for president.

"You never say no to these things, but I've never really had this ambition," Ryan said. "I have presidential-size policy ambition. I've never really had presidential-size personal ambition. It just was never really in my DNA."



It is possible Ryan might not run for reelection as House speaker, but his spokesman Brendan Buck said he is not changing plans: "He intends to continue serving this team as speaker in the next Congress."

The Atlantic reported Ryan said he would "work with whoever wins whatever office."

He said divided government was the problem.

"It doesn't work very well. The big things — poverty, debt crisis, the economy, healthcare – these things are stuck in divided government. That's why we think a unified Republican government is the way to go."

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Speaker of the House Paul Ryan is facing a precarious political future, according to an analysis in Politico.
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Thursday, 29 September 2016 03:35 PM
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