If there is a single person who made Paul Ryan the Speaker of the House, it is probably Mark Meadows. Back in 2015, Meadows, a former restaurant owner who, in 2012, was elected to represent the most conservative district in North Carolina, set into motion the events that led to Speaker John Boehner’s resignation. Meadows, who had no legislative experience, filed an obscure parliamentary procedure known as a motion to vacate that would have forced a referendum on Boehner in the House. Boehner resigned rather than face the prospect of losing that vote, and Ryan emerged as the only Speaker candidate acceptable to all the factions of the House G.O.P.
In the town of Ripon, Wisconsin, sits a small, white clapboard schoolhouse with the sign: “Birthplace of the Republican Party.” According to Wisconsin lore, the GOP was conceived there in 1853, when a small group of citizens, inspired by their opposition to the spread of slavery, came together to change “the future of our nation,” as the “Little White Schoolhouse” website puts it.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker went to a crisis pregnancy center in Waukesha to sign two bills that will cut Planned Parenthood's funding in the state. "Certainly, over the past year there's been a lot of controversy nationally about Planned Parenthood," Walker said before signing the legislation. "For those of us who are pro-life, this is important…taxpayer dollars at the federal and state level should not be spent…particularly when there are noncontroversial alternatives."
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said Tuesday that it would be good for U.S. foreign policy if Congress voted to authorize the war against self-described Islamic State terrorists -- putting him at direct odds with his Senate counterpart, who has rejected the idea.
After the tumultuous few weeks that led up to Paul Ryan taking over as the new House speaker, his first week on the job was a honeymoon from the Republican infighting that sidelined his predecessor, John Boehner. It was productive too. But there were signs already that the goodwill might not last long for the young speaker who faces many tough choices in the weeks ahead, including how far he is willing to push efforts to defund Planned Parenthood and other conservative priorities and risk a government shutdown.
One of Paul Ryan's last acts as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee was to tweet out a blog on his committee page that highlighted “[t]he American idea: the notion that the condition of your birth doesn’t determine the outcome of your life.” One of his very first moves as House speaker was to take immigration reform off the agenda during the remaining months of President Obama’s term. Ryan appears not only to be contradicting himself through these acts, but also ignoring the extent to which where you are born determines your outcome in life. If the newly minted speaker really cared about the American idea, he would be ensuring that equality of opportunity didn’t stop at the water’s edge.
Rep. Paul Ryan has officially been elected as the 54th speaker of the House after he got the votes of 236 members by the full House of Representatives. The vote was largely a formality after House Republicans nominated him for the position on Wednesday.
Rep. Paul Ryan, the former vice-presidential candidate and soon to be speaker of the House, is smart, pleasant, and willing to compromise—a “good guy, a decent guy,” as Vice President Joe Biden said on 60 Minutes last Sunday. Ryan’s shrewd maneuvering since John Boehner announced his retirement will likely make him a powerful speaker. By conveying sincerity and civic virtue in his role as the reluctant Cincinnatus, he will take the gavel without having to promise much to the Freedom Caucus, headed by Rep. Jim Jordan, who showed what a nasty piece of work he is during the Benghazi hearings.
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