Colleagues Doubt Paul Ryan Will Set His Sights On White House

Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) Republican colleagues believe the popular conservative is more likely to seek a new leadership position within the House than run for president in 2016, The Hill reported Tuesday.

Some House conservatives, who spoke to The Hill on condition of anonymity, doubted the former vice presidential candidate’s ability to best conservative governors in a presidential primary. At least one cited the bipartisan budget deal Ryan struck with Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) as a potential liability and called it “a pretty good sign he’s not running for president.” 

“Honestly, I think Paul would struggle in a Republican primary, just because of the issues that drive a Republican primary,” another conservative House Republican who is supportive of Ryan told The Hill. 

For his part, Ryan doesn’t believe the budget agreement will hurt his “future ambitions.” But the Wisconsin Republican has repeatedly said that this term is all about policy, and he plans to take a “hard look” at 2016 later. 

Many of those lawmakers interviewed by The Hill thought Ryan would simply set his sights on chairing the House Ways and Means Committee. The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that Ryan said he aims to succeed current Chair Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI) on the committee in 2015.

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