Is House Speaker Paul Ryan retiring? According to a new report from POLITICO, the Wisconsin lawmaker is set to leave Washington after the 2018 midterm elections.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) December 14, 2017
Ryan was tiring of D.C. even before reluctantly accepting the speakership. He told his predecessor, John Boehner, that it would be his last job in politics—and that it wasn’t a long-term proposition. In the months following Trump’s victory, he began contemplating the scenarios of his departure. More recently, over closely held conversations with his kitchen cabinet, Ryan’s preference has become clear: He would like to serve through Election Day 2018 and retire ahead of the next Congress. This would give Ryan a final legislative year to chase his second white whale, entitlement reform, while using his unrivaled fundraising prowess to help protect the House majority—all with the benefit of averting an ugly internecine power struggle during election season. Ryan has never loved the job; he oozes aggravation when discussing intra-party debates over “micro-tactics,” and friends say he feels like he’s running a daycare center. On a personal level, going home at the end of next year would allow Ryan, who turns 48 next month, to keep promises to family; his three children are in or entering their teenage years, and Ryan, whose father died at 55, wants desperately to live at home with them full-time before they begin flying the nest.
In November, Ryan told POLITICO that he hardly thinks about job security because House Speaker isn’t a position he even wanted to hold.
“No, because it’s not a job I ever wanted in the first place,” Ryan said on the subject of job security.
“If I was dying to be speaker, I guess it probably would be a dagger over my head. But I don’t think like that.”
According to the Washington Examiner, Ryan said he isn’t going anywhere. Of course, the denial is text book politics.
“Next year is going to be the year where we work on people.”
“Next year is the year we work on getting people where they need to get in life, in better jobs, an actual career, closing the skills gap,” said Ryan.
“When we have tens of millions of people right here in this country, falling short of their potential not working, not looking for a job or not in school getting a skill to get a job, that’s a problem.”
“So that’s why we need to tackle these things,” added Ryan.