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Tuesday, 20 October 2015 20:36

Ryan sets Friday deadline for Republicans to pledge full support

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Ryan sets Friday deadline for Republicans to pledge full support Terry Mayer/CSI Media news

JANESVILLE -- Rep. Paul Ryan, after a week at home in Janesville with his family mulling a call from Republicans to run for speaker, gave his party an ultimatum.

During a widely reported closed door meeting today, Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, with members of the House Republican Conference, Ryan said he needs to know by Friday if all 247 members would support his bid for speaker.

If not, he's happy to remain in his dream job as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, according to

Ryan, the father of three, relishes his time at home with his family. He's well known in the neighborhood for his corny Halloween costumes while out trick-or-treating, and attends mass Sunday mornings at the church just blocks from his home.

His run as Mitt Romney's Republican vice-presidential candidate in the 2012 election took a toll, but Ryan relished the experience, he later said in an interview with the Janesville Messenger.

Ryan clearly has been troubled by the fundraising responsibilities that traditionally come with the speaker's title. Rep. John Boehner, who is resigning from the post, often spent three weekends a month on the road raising money.

Ryan, in his message to fellow Republicans, called for a change to the way the job is structured, saying the speaker should be more focused on communicating the message of the party and house and less on fundraising according to members in the room, according to the New York Times.

However he also urged members to not try and change the rules “for one group," alluding to the 40 or so members of the House Freedom Caucus who forced Boehner from his job and Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the majority leader, to drop his bid for the speakership.

Caucus members say they want more input into how legislation moves through the house.

The Republican conference has two more meetings schedule for tomorrow, Oct. 21, 2015.

Despite Ryan's clear conservative record over the years, some say Ryan isn't conservative enough.

The Washington Post reported that And Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, who is known as a tough immigration foe, said he’s concerned about Ryan’s views on immigration and granting legal status to undocumented immigrants.

“In the short term, it wouldn’t be a struggle with Paul Ryan, but we know what he believes in,” King said.



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