Speaker Paul Ryan sounds off on Sunday talk shows

Newly elected Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) did a series of interviews for five Sunday morning talk shows Friday in Washington on Fox, CNN, CBS, NBC, and ABC, touching on all the hot-button issues Congress is currently facing.

The highlight of Rep. Ryan’s comments may have been when he told “Fox News Sunday” that Congressional Republicans “have (no vision) . . . we fight over tactics because we don’t have vision. We have to . . . offer an alternative to this country so that they can see that if we get a chance to lead . . . this is what it will look like.”

In the same vein, he said on CBS’ “Face the Nation”, “We’ve taken plenty of tactical risks here in Congress. I believe it’s time to take some policy risks.”

“I’m redesigning this job,” Ryan went on to say. “I don’t think it can work going forward like it’s worked in the past.”

Specifically, the new Speaker wants to return to “regular order”, where House bills are brought to the floor through the committee process, and then debated by members before a final vote.

Ryan also opined on some policy specifics, such as immigration reform, paid family-leave, and defunding Planned Parenthood.

Most forceful on legislation to reform a broken immigration system, Ryan said on CNN’s “State of the Union”, “Specifically, on this issue, you cannot trust this president.”

Ryan went into greater detail on Fox: “(Obama is) already proven untrustworthy because he tried to circumvent the legislative process with his executive orders.”

On proposed paid-leave legislation: “I don’t think people asked me to be Speaker so that I can take more money from hard-working taxpayers to create some new federal entitlement.”

Instead, Ryan says he supports Rep. Martha Roby’s (R-AL) flex-time bill that would “give families more flexibility in their (work) hours.”

On effort by some Congressional Republicans to defund Planned Parenthood, Ryan set out by saying, “I don’t think Planned Parenthood should get a red cent from the taxpayer”, but said he will let the special committee handling the inquiry to “be in the driver’s seat . . . (therefore) I don’t know what the outcome’s going to be.”

At the end of his interview on CNN, Ryan gave the public a glimpse into his daily routine in Washington.

I get up very early in the morning . . . I work until about 11:30 at night . . . I can actually get more work done by sleeping on a cot in my office. I’ve been doing it for at least a decade, and I’m gonna keep doing it.

With a work ethic like that, expect a more contentious relationship between Congress and the White House until the end of 2016.


[Washington Post] [Fox News] [CBS News] [CNN]