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Hugh Hewitt Book Club

About Paul Ryan and His Conditions

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I am pretty much with Jim Geraghty on this deal:

Look, Republicans, in the face of a lawless president, an opposition party that is increasingly openly socialist, a hostile, ruthless, unfair media . . . whomever we choose — Ryan, Daniel Webster, whomever — the party’s got to unite behind him and start pulling the oars in the same direction. Either we hang together or we hang separately.

I acknowledge that Ryan’s ask is extraordinary, but these are extraordinary times.  Let us not forget that should he get the speakership, Ryan is effectively giving up any presidential aspiration the former vice presidential candidate may have.  So I find it troubling when all sorts of people are finding trouble with Ryan’s conditions.  But since Caesar references seem to be the order of the day, let’s remember one more thing about the whole temporary dictator thing.  Until it did not work, declaring a dictator to weather a crisis worked pretty well.  The key to the whole thing was to make sure the dictator you declared was of sufficient character to set down the dictatorship when the crisis abated, which includes sufficient character to resist the temptation that comes from the dictatorial office.

I have never had an opportunity to meet Paul Ryan personally, but I have met the man that selected him as a vice presidential candidate on more than one occasion.  Whatever Mitt Romney’s failings as a candidate may or may not be, he has an abundance of character.  Therefore, I am quite certain that Ryan is a man of deep character as well.  Romney simply would not have had it any other way.

Ryan has made it quite clear he does not really want this job.  For him this is a matter of service not desire.  That of itself is a mark of character, and a sign that he will shed this job and the powers he seeks with it at the earliest opportunity.

Such character is indispensable at this juncture.  I can think of no one better under any conditions to serve as the next Speaker of the House.


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