The Huffington Post is trying to spray fuel on the conflict between House Speaker Paul Ryan and GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump, saying, “if there is a fight for the Republican Party, there is no evidence to suggest Republicans will side with Ryan. And there’s no indication of Trump is going anywhere.”
The article, titled “Ryan Plan: Run and Hide,” was the lead article for much of Oct. 21.
The problem for Ryan is that Trump, his supporters and his policies do not seem to be going anywhere, even if he loses spectacularly.
Ryan’s favorability has fallen 28 points over the past two weeks, fueled by Trump turning his attention to the speaker and criticizing him for sowing division in the party, seemingly without any sense of irony.
A Bloomberg poll conducted Oct. 14-17 showed that 51 percent of Republicans think the Trump’s view of what the GOP stands for better matches theirs, compared to 33 percent who said Ryan’s perspective more closely matched theirs.
Ryan has set himself up for a confrontation with Trump after Election Day. “Come Nov. 9, there will be a fight for who we are, what we stand for,” one top GOP aide told The Huffington Post this month.
But, if there is a fight for the Republican Party, there is no evidence to suggest Republicans will side with Ryan. And there’s no indication of Trump is going anywhere…
A September poll showed 85 percent of Republicans agreeing with Trump’s belief that free trade has cost more jobs than it’s created. And an April poll found 63 percent of Republicans support building a wall between the entirety of the U.S.-Mexico border, in line with Trump’s pledge.
Ryan is on the other side of those issues and will have to square his positions with those of his party at some point, and it’s unclear how he does that when Republicans are so divided.
On top of the ideological issues, Ryan has some practical problems following the election. If you believe Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the House GOP is going to be in single digits “either way” ― meaning Ryan will have lost more than 20 seats and, potentially, the Republican majority….
“If we lose 15, it’ll be tough for Paul Ryan,” one GOP member told HuffPost this month. That means, as other members have told HuffPost, Ryan already has a speaker reelection problem. And that’s before Trump starts whipping up the GOP base. Already, we see some conservatives in the House looking apt to use Ryan’sless-than-enthusiastic support of Trump as a way to potentially remove him.
“If Paul Ryan isn’t for Trump, then I’m not for Paul Ryan,” Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) said in a Twitter post last week.
Ryan also has to navigate a December spending deal that’s likely to anger many other Republicans and test the promises of regular order that he made last year when he took the speakership.
Read it all here.