With all of the Republican resignations and decisions not to seek re-election with the onset of America’s pronounced case of Trump Fatigue™ perhaps no announcement was bigger than that of Representative Paul Ryan, who is leaving behind not just a 20-year career in the US House of Representatives, but a position as one of the most powerful men in Washington as Speaker of the House.
His decision was both a surprise and not a surprise, in that chatter had been circulating about him leaving for weeks and even months — but he had very publicly assured the president that he was not leaving after Trump expressed his extreme dismay at the possibility of losing such an important, strongly conservative ally in Congress. In fact, that may have factored into Ryan’s eventual decision to throw in the towel, as Ryan must have finally reckoned with the fact that Trump didn’t actually see him as a Congressional counterpart, but as a rubber stamp for his plans and peculiarities.
And now, according to a credible Wisconsin Republican source for New Century Times, there may be another factor that weighed on Paul Ryan’s decision to leave the esteemed halls of Congress, and it may be bringing with it an even more extremist conservative to take his place.
Although there is no confirmation yet, our source tells us there is a plan in the works for Paul Ryan to essentially switch places with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, the union-busting Republican who has, as of late, been busying himself with trying to prevent Wisconsinites from voting at all.
It is, of course, not as simple as just trading jobs — each man would have to file before the June 1 deadline to be candidates in their respective races, and even then, either would hardly be a shoo-in for the jobs: Ryan’s main concern in electing to retire was, by all accounts, his unpopularity and the increasing likelihood that he would have lost his seat to Democrat Randy Bryce in November anyway. Walker has long been unpopular among any but the most conservative voters, winning by the slimmest of margins even against relatively marginal candidates.
It definitely makes sense — Ryan would have the opportunity to exercise the executive authority he has so long desired, perhaps even as a way of gearing up for a presidential run in 2024, while Walker would finally be free to flex his activist muscles on legislation he could just write himself, and most especially if the second part of our source’s information turns out to be true as well:
Scott Walker wants to take over as Speaker of the House.
Again, there are a lot of “ifs” at play here, including the fact that other Republicans have already joined the field of candidates for Ryan’s soon-to-be-vacant seat, and the fact that Ryan has already endorsed Rep Kevin McCarthy as the next Speaker (although it is widely expected that Democrats will pick up more than the 24 seats they’ll need to take over the House, making Nancy Pelosi the Speaker once more). And there’s also the fact that Walker has already been spending re-election money on a gubernatorial campaign.
But if this all pans out, this could be the biggest story in actual politics — rather than Trump drama and intrigue — in all of 2018.
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