Paul Ryan plays the reluctant hero.
Ryan spoke to the House GOP behind closed doors Tuesday and said if all factions can share his vision and he can get the endorsement of the major caucuses, then he will serve as speaker.
The news was confirmed by his spokesman Brendan Buck, who said according to reports, “If he is not a unifying figure for the conference, then he will not run.”
Ryan held a brief press conference after the meeting to lay out his vision for the speakership, if he were elected.
He said Republicans needed to move from being “an opposition party to an proposition party.” He also said he would seek updates to the House rules — a common demand by the conservative hardliners that roiled Speaker John Boehner’s tenure — “so everyone can be a more effective representative.”
He also said he would not sacrifice his time with his family and young children, a concern that had been raised by his allies as the speaker often spends weekends fundraising for members. He said he was still worried about the toll the role would take on his family, but added, “My greatest worry is the consequences of not stepping up.”
The 45-year-old Ryan, under intense pressure to seek the post, gave his colleagues until Friday to express their support.
That’s it; play hard to get. That’s how Newt Gingrich got the job. (Or was it his third wife?) Anyway, Mr. Ryan is making it extremely easy for the hard-core right wing to flip him off and stick with Rep. Daniel Webster (R-FL), who thinks that subservient wives and flogging is the American Way. So this whole “unity” thing; good luck, Paul. The only time the GOP has ever been unified is when they’re determined to blow something up.