Will the Freedom Caucus Be Dumb Enough to Derail Paul Ryan?

Will the Freedom Caucus Be Dumb Enough to Derail Paul Ryan?


A reluctant Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), told reporters tonight that he will run for House Speaker ONLY IF there is unity in the GOP Caucus.  The question is what it always has been in the House since 2010: How long before members of the “Freedom Caucus” figure out a way to declare Ryan isn’t conservative enough, or strong enough, or authentic enough, for their taste.

“People don’t care about blame. People don’t care about effort. People care about results,” Ryan told reporters tonight.  His words were a far cry from the de facto official policy of obstruction policy House Republicans have had during the Obama presidency. Ryan was there on the night of January 20, 2009 when Republicans gathered to plan how to stop President Obama’s agenda.

One has to wonder why Ryan isn’t a strong supported of family leave.  Tonight he declared he will not modify his schedule with his family should he become Speaker.

“I cannot and will not give up my family time,” Ryan said.  Though Ryan asking for an unprecedented accommodation in the modern political world, the fact is Republicans are so stuck on the question of who will be Speaker they may have to play ball with Ryan.  There are not many House members who can claim they can reach 218 votes to become Speaker.

“‘I don’t want to work weekends.’ I’ve never heard of someone who wanted more power and less responsibility,” tweeted Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) late into the evening Tuesday regarding Ryan’s effort.  It’s likely there will be more negative energy coming from members of the Freedom Caucus on Wednesday on Capitol Hill.

Despite hot talk and demands for rules changes, the fact still remains that no one in the Freedom Caucus is putting their name forward to run.  Their position as the never satisfied wing of the GOP in the House remains intact.

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Lauren Victoria Burke
Lauren Victoria Burke is a writer, comms strategist and political analyst. She created Crewof42, a blog focused on African American members of Congress, in 2009. Ms. Burke also writes for NBC BLK, The Root, NNPA and is the Managing Editor of Politic365. As part of a diverse career in politics and media, she has served as a congressional staffer for the U.S. Senate Democratic Policy Committee, Communications Director for U.S. Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN) and Director of Communications for Justin Fairfax for Lt. Governor of Virginia. From 2014 to 2017, Ms. Burke appeared each Monday on NewsOneNow with Roland Martin on TVOne. Ms. Burke holds a B.A. in History from The American University. She was born and raised in New York. Email: LBurke007@gmail.com. Twitter: @LVBurke. IG: @laurenvburke. Periscope: @LVBurke