Once one of the most powerful politicians in the country, former Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, chose to retire from Congress in 2018 in order to sit on lucrative boards, like Fox News and the Reagan Library Foundation, among others. Ryan was quickly forgotten, especially after overseeing the Republican loss of the House of Representatives in the 2018 midterms.
In the past four years, Ryan’s forays from private citizen back into the public square seem to happen about once a year. In May of 2021, Ryan made a really terrible speech at the Reagan Library about the future of the Republican Party, and decided to do more Republican campaign fundraisers, putting his “weight” behind J6 Committee darlings Ill. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Cryer) and Wyo. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Egregious). Kinzinger is retiring, so my bet is that any money raised for him goes back into the Republican coffers (lose-win), and so far it looks like Cheney is slated to lose her seat, with a prominent CNN gig to cushion the fall.
Ryan also testified in support of then-Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, validating her judicial fitness.
Janna and I are incredibly happy for Ketanji and her entire family. Our politics may differ, but my praise for Ketanji’s intellect, for her character, and for her integrity, is unequivocal.
— Paul Ryan (@SpeakerRyan) February 25, 2022
Apparently, Ryan has familial ties to the controversial KBJ. The twin brother of KBJ’s husband is married to Paul Ryan’s sister-in-law.
Nepotism reigns supreme in politics.
Ryan is also campaigning for South Carolina Rep. Tom Rice, who was one of the 10 Republicans who voted to impeach then-President Donald J. Trump. Thanks to his principled stance for democracy (according to him), Rice is being challenged by state Rep. Russell Fry. who has been endorsed by Trump, as well as Horry County Board of Education Chairman Ken Richardson, physician Dr. Garrett Barton, and Christian speaker Barbara Arthur. Apparently, all of these candidates are well funded, so this June 14 South Carolina primary will be one to watch.
We see the company Ryan continues to keep: anti-Trump, anti-America First, GOP-Elite, and politically connected donors and globalists. So, it is amazing that in this political climate, where his class of politician is becoming more despised by the populace, that he steps back into the fray with this “wisdom.”
From The Washington Times:
Former House Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Thursday there are a lot of digital-age “entertainers” in Congress who are making it difficult to find common ground and forge legislative solutions for the country.
Mr. Ryan, speaking to CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” said that 10 years ago, lawmakers tried to climb a “meritocracy” in Congress.
<insert *laughing/crying* emoji>
Ryan was handpicked and groomed by Jack Kemp, a former New York Rep. and Housing Secretary under George H.W. Bush. Ryan is a proud Kemp and Ayn Rand disciple and a policy nerd. Nothing wrong with nerds, but let’s be honest: the ability to negotiate, govern, or lead was never his strong suit, and it showed in his three years as House Speaker.
“The measurement of success was policy and persuasion: Could you persuade your colleagues, your country, your constituents, ‘This is the right way to go, here’s a solution?’” Mr. Ryan said. “That’s not necessarily what motivates people anymore. There’s a lot of entertainers in Congress in both parties.”
So which is more effective: being boring and having crap policies that you don’t push well, or being an “entertainer” with sound policies that you push effectively? It sounds like Ryan is exposing the fact that he is 1) not entertaining, or even interesting; and, 2) he failed his own measurement because he didn’t have good policies and wasn’t persuasive either.
Back in 2015, when Ryan ascended to become House Speaker, Forbes said this of him:
Ryan is viewed as a compromise guy: one who is willing to take a position on issues important to him, like tax reform, but not so entrenched in partisan politics that he’s not willing to reach across the aisle. He has pledged to bring Republicans back together and move forward, saying after the vote, “We have an obligation here in the people’s house to do the people’s business.”
So after Ryan absconded from Congress, what did he leave his party with?
- Ryan left Obamacare on the books, despite claiming in every Republican campaign that he would fight to repeal it.
- Ryan’s great wonk goals of reducing entitlement programs like Medicaid and Social Security fell on deaf ears and were quickly forgotten.
- The party was more divided than when he started, with his pal Liz Cheney being removed as a GOP leader in the House.
It is apparent that Ryan persuaded no one, didn’t get the people’s business done, and divided, rather than unified. This was most evident in his relationship with his fellow Republicans in the Freedom Caucus.
Here is what a conservative blog said of Ryan upon his retirement in 2018:
Paul Ryan’s retirement from Congress marks the end for one of the most prominent Republicans of his generation. Even before taking the role of Speaker of the House, Ryan had managed to become, in the words of Mitt Romney, the “intellectual leader” of the post-Bush GOP. Unfortunately Ryan’s story can be seen as nothing but a tragedy. By all accounts he is a good-natured man, but one who ended up betraying almost all the causes he claimed to care about.
No kidding. We didn’t need an “intellectual leader;” we needed someone who actually led. Many conservatives now regret their 2012 vote for these Low-T twins, and one of them is still a boil on the back of proper governance.
Ryan supposedly took another route, deciding to play the outsider/insider game and pontificating as an elder statesman, and has had little success, but lots of prestige. However, we now have an electorate that really doesn’t give a damn about who he is or what he has to say. Sadly, Ryan did not get the memo and is increasing his efforts to insert himself into the national conversation, while making moves to secure his place in the public square a second time.
Good. Luck, With. That.
Former Vice President Mike Pence is laying the ground for a 2024 presidential run <insert *laughing/crying* emoji>. It wouldn’t strain credulity that Pence would like to draw Ryan in, either as his running mate or as part of his cabinet.
And then there is this:
This is a PAC, not Ryan himself, trying to gin up support for a 2024 Ryan-Cheney ticket. The failure of any of these parties to understand the temperature of the nation, let alone the temperature of conservative and Republican voters, is jaw-dropping and stunning.
If nothing else, it would be entertaining to watch.
So, really, good luck with that!