The House GOP is planning to oust Speaker Paul Ryan before the end of the summer, and well before Ryan finishes his final term in Congress, according to a report in The Weekly Standard.
Haley Byrd at the Weekly Standard alleges that Republicans are already putting together a plan that would have Ryan cleaning out the Speaker’s office well before the end of the summer, before Congress returns for its fall session, and well before the Speaker is scheduled to leave office in January.
The change wouldn’t be drastic — Republicans are expected to back the official Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy for the Speaker’s chair — but the timeline is somewhat more protracted than Ryan might have initially expected. Ryan had anticipated remaining in office at least until after the November elections, and perhaps even until January.
He may not be so lucky. Sources within the Trump Administration tell the Weekly Standard that no less than President Trump himself “believes there is merit to the plan.” He hasn’t made a final decision, his aides tell WS, however.
Even though Ryan has helped pass a few key pieces of legislation in his tenure as Speaker, now that he’s officially retiring from office, he’s not as powerful. It’s less likely he’d be able to whip Republican legislators into backing any controversial bills, splitting the House GOP and rendering it ineffective. If Democrats take back the House in 2018 — as they are expected to do — Republicans will have to have a strong and productive last few months of 2018 in order to save President Trump’s agenda.
Letting Ryan go may be the only decision that makes sense.