• WisPolitics


Tuesday, January 13, 2015

 10:02 AM 

Ryan not running for president in 2016

U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan is passing on a run for the presidency in 2016, saying his work as Ways and Means chair deserves his undivided attention.

Insiders have speculated for weeks that Ryan would not run after taking over as chair of the Ways and Means Committee, where he will have the opportunity to shape national debate on issues that range from the tax code to Social Security.

"It's clear our country needs a change in direction. And our party has a responsibility to offer a real alternative," Ryan said in a statement. "So I'm going to do what I can to lay out conservative solutions and to help our nominee lead us to victory."

Ryan told NBC News that he made the decision weeks ago and was at peace with it. Ryan, who turns 45 later this month, did not rule out a future bid in the interview and declined to endorse anyone.

"I think we've got a number of very capable candidates who have every ability to become president. There are a lot of talented people," he told the network. "I think it is critical that our party puts forward bold, conservative ideas and give people a choice. I think we have a number of capable leaders who can do that."

Insiders have also long speculated that it was unlikely Ryan and Gov. Scott Walker would both run for president. The guv, who has been ramping up his operation for an expected bid, praised Ryan today.

"There are two kinds of people in politics: Those who want to be someone great, and those who want to do something great," Walker said through his campaign. "Paul is in the latter group, and although he will not be seeking the presidency, the American people will continue to benefit greatly from his leadership in the House."


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