It has been rumored for weeks and is now official. Speaker Paul Ryan will not seek reelection in 2018. All along it was a job he was reluctant to take and has really gone against his natural abilities. His passion and his background is as a policy wonk. His career goes back to working as an aide to the late Congressman Jack Kemp (R-NY) who had a reputation as a team player and made politics and policy seem fun. Jack Kemp, who believed in working with others and had a very inclusive approach to politics, would be devoured in today’s polarizing political environment. He would find playing football against NFL defenses, as a quarterback for the Buffalo Bills, to be a cakewalk compared to the battles facing politicians today. I think his protege, Paul Ryan, was cut from a similar cloth.
On his Twitter feed, Speaker Ryan wrote: “Serving as speaker has been a great honor. Now, with all three of my kids in their teens, I am ready to set new priorities. I intend to serve my full term as I was elected to do. But I will be retiring in January, leaving this majority in good hands and with a bright future.”
He offered a similar sentiment in this statement:
Ryan’s Wisconsin district is purple at best, and is now providing an opportunity for a Democrat victory in November.