House Freedom Caucus Takes a Pass on Paul Ryan


Ryan 1

Update: 10/22/15: They caved and 80% now support Paul Ryan in what will be an unholy and temporary alliance.


Since we posted this article, things changed slightly and we had to update it at 9:30.

Rep. Louie Gohmert reported that the House Freedom Caucus was not going to endorse Paul Ryan as Speaker and they did fall short of the needed votes for an endorsement.

The Washington Post, however, said they cleared a path for him to attain the position as of 8 pm this evening. A majority of some of the most disgruntled House Republicans signaled that they would support his bid for the top job though it fell short of an endorsement. The Post said House Ways and Means Chairman spent the day courting them.

“A supermajority of the caucus has agreed to support Paul Ryan,” said Rep. Raúl R. Labrador (R-Idaho) after a lengthy evening meeting.

It wasn’t a complete rejection.

Rep. Ryan agreed to serve as Speaker but only under certain conditions.

Ryan wants to put more power in the office of the Speaker than John Boehner had.

He said he must have the support of three groups inside the House Republican conference: the House Freedom Caucus, the Republican Study Committee and the moderate Tuesday Group, his spokesman, Brendan Buck, said.

Ryan also had a few more demands: He wants changes to House rules made as a team — a major demand of the House Freedom Caucus; he wants to make it harder to overthrow a sitting speaker; and he wants a better work-life balance than out-going House Speaker John Boehner had.

Rep. Jim Jordan, head of the Freedom Caucus, told Fox News Sunday last week that some of his members “would look favorably” on Ryan — provided he is willing to embrace reforms that would diminish the leadership’s powers and strengthen the hand of rank and file members.

Ryan asked for the opposite. Maybe so he isn’t picked for the job.

Rep. Peter King of New York, who literally hates Conservatives, said tea party lawmakers will prove they are “a disaster for the Republican Party and the country” if they don’t accept that Ryan is their party’s best hope for unity. He said Ryan’s terms for running are more than fair.

“I don’t see why he would agree to be speaker under any other conditions,” King said. “Basically, what he’s asking for is a normal way of conducting the House. If he’s denied that, then I wouldn’t blame him for not running.”

A number of viewpoints that Ryan holds puts him at a disadvantage with Conservatives. His bipartisan budget deal was one of them.

One of Ryan’s alleged crowning achievements was a two-year bipartisan budget deal that he and then-Democratic Senate Budget Committee Chair Patty Murray negotiated in late December 2013 following a 16-day government shutdown.

The deal funded Obama’s agenda.

It also cancelled the automatic across-the-board spending cuts and caps mandated by the Budget Control Act to enable the GOP to claim more spending on defense and enable President Obama to gain more money for his domestic Socialist programs.

It didn’t really cut anything. It reduced the increase in spending.