Tuesday, October 11, 2016


So I guess it wasn't enough that Paul Ryan had a widely reported conference call yesterday in which he made clear that he won't campaign for Donald Trump and he plans to focus on preserving GOP control of the House. Now we're getting another story about Ryan's moral agony, this time from Politico:
Paul Ryan may not be done yet.

As thoroughly as the House speaker shocked the national political establishment Monday by saying he's done with Donald Trump and it's time to focus on his House majority, there's a distinct possibility Ryan will go a step further and completely yank his endorsement, sources close to him told POLITICO.

In fact, Ryan has personally been on the edge of pulling the plug but has held out because his decision is about more than just his personal feelings: It's about saving his massive 60-seat majority. The Wisconsin Republican is in an excruciating spot: He feels torn between his own conscience and his obligations as the top Republican in the country, according to multiple sources in leadership familiar with the internal discussions.
Am I the only person who's tired of being told every day that Paul Ryan is wrestling with his conscience and Attention Must Be Paid? Recall that even before the Trump Access Hollywood tape was released, we were reading this in AP story about Ryan's efforts to soldir on despite his profound suffering:
It's long been clear that House Speaker Paul Ryan is, shall we say, not wholly comfortable with Donald Trump's presidential candidacy.

The announcement of Ryan's and Trump's first joint appearance of the campaign on Saturday in Wisconsin — just four weeks before the election -- was simply the latest reminder.

The awkwardly worded missive on Thursday said that Ryan would appear with top Wisconsin Republicans, including Gov. Scott Walker and Sen. Ron Johnson.

Oh, and by the way, the third paragraph of Ryan's release says that Trump "will also join Wisconsin Republicans" at the annual party festival in Elkhorn, a small city in Ryan's congressional district.

In the news business, that's known as "burying the lead."
Ryan ultimately backed out of that event -- but has it every occurred to Ryan and the many friends who eagerly report his every mood swing to the media that this isn't all about him?

Compare the reaction to Trump by Ryan's counterpart in the Senate, Mitch McConnell. It's much more likely that McConnell will lose his Senate majority than that Ryan will lose his majority in the House -- Democrats would need to win the overall House vote by a 7% to 10% margin in order to regain control, according to various estimates -- yet McConnell is refusing to talk about Trump and generally keeping a low profile.

By contrast, Ryan seems to regard every twist and turn in the Trump saga as an excuse to make himself into a news story. I'm not sure what this gets him -- all he seems to be doing is making himself a target of Trump voters' wrath, even though he still hasn't rescinded his endorsement. He'll be one of those voters' scapegoats when Trump loses.

But the guy just loves publicity, and always has. Here's Paul Ryan embracing Ayn Rand! Here's Paul Ryan repudiating Ayn Rand! Here's Paul Ryan doing his workout routine! And on and on.

I know Ryan is young and ambitious, unlike McConnell, who's much older and who has a job he considers the pinnacle of his career. But still: We're sick of you, Paul. We're sick of your histrionic moral anguish. Get over yourself.


Jim Snyder said...

1. "Am I the only person ..." Speaking only for myself, I wish he'd go away entirely, and Mitch the Turtle, too ... and with Trumpkins on the march, perhaps Raynd will have more time to spend with his family come January.

2. In comments at earlier posts I said that MGM was owned by NBC. That is not correct, according to wiki. I can't tell on a quick browse who the owners are.

3. PPRI-Atlantic poll has HRC up by 11. Two weeks ago the same poll had the candidates running even. Looks like the dial moved for real.


sdhays said...

You are not the only person. Amen!

Knight of Nothing said...

I agree that it's maddening, especially because he is actually such an incredible lightweight, belying his reputation as a Serious Thinker.

I do think these stories serve a purpose, though: they are a synecdoche of every Republican who is having a crisis over Trump's candidacy. I imagine lots of readers of these kinds of stories probably relate to him on this level. For my part, I have conservative family members who were still hand-wringing about the election before Friday.

Bottom line: if Ryan was truly a man of conscience, he would have renounced Trump long before Friday. And given that he *still* hasn't un-endorsed and rejected him, I think we can take it as a full-throated confession that he knows just who the Republican Party base actually is: a misogynistic, racist, xenophobic mob (see: "deplorables, basket of").

Victor said...

Let's face some facts:
t-RUMP is Ryan on steroids!
Ryan is a politer version of t-RUMP - he knows how to code-talk better.

maxk1947 said...

Ryan rescinding his endorsement of Trump? I can't think of a better way for the Republicans to lose the House, as hordes of rabid Trumpsters show up for their hero but decline to vote for the down-ballot "insiders."

CF2K said...

Oh, please God, let soon-to-be Minority Leader Ryan do as he's threatening.

KenRight said...

You grifters will be the first to forgive and accept any Trump backstabbing GOP elite, like even Pence, perhaps, and Ryan, McConnell etc. who proceed to help Killary if she's rigged into office, embark on a cold war crusade against Russia in Syria and Ukraine,

rclz said...

Anyone heard any mumbling of the Senate doing their F***ing job and confirming Garland? I have long suspected that part of the reason that the evangelicals (not all certainly) are supporting Trump is because of the SC seat that is open, abortion and Hobby Lobby don't ya know.

If it looks like the Senate is lost does the GOP confirm Garland so Hillery doesn't get to pick and there by losing even more votes, who don't have a reason to support Trump or Hillary and stay home, or do they hold out against horrible pole numbers and let Hillary pick her SC nomination with a friendly Senate?

hahaha I don't know if I'm right but just the idea gives me the giggles.

rclz said...

Oh, and Ryan is a horrible person and not very smart, or he'd of never taken the speakers job, which was never going to do him any good if he wants to be prez. By the end of it the GOPers will hate him as much as they hated John B when they chased him out. With the Freedom caucus there's no way for him to ever win. You can't win against nihilists.

Maxwell's Demon said...

He thinks he's fucking Hamlet, and no one wnat s to read that story yet again.

Jim Snyder said...

@KenWhite: Tell us what your Kremlin masters want, d00d.

"Killary" was my joke, not your straight line.

I suppose I should be flattered that you plagiarized me ...

... but oddly enough, I am not flattered to be plagiarized by a troll operative with a Kremlin subsidy.

Your reference to "Christian Russia" is in retrospect deeply amusing.

In a noir sorta way, of course.