Comments: Farewell, Mister Speaker!

Something doesn't add up here. Please check my work:

Ryan resigned to spend more time with his family so as not to be "just a weekend dad."

Ryan's entire congressional career has been dedicated to federal budget fiscal sanity through budget (read: entitlement spending) reform. Some say it was his reason for returning to Washington every year.

Pursuit of bipartisan entitlement reform "just seems suicidal."

Paul Ryan retired. Not with a bang but with a whimper.

Why not speak truth to power, appeal to his constituents to rally behind him, and make a "suicidal" charge into the establishment's entitlement empire? You know, because it's so important to him. What's the worst that could happen? Lose reelection? Buehler?

Posted by johngalt at April 12, 2018 3:27 PM

I always like him. It's too bad he was too nice of all things!

Posted by Terri Goon at April 12, 2018 3:29 PM

The WSJ is laudatory today. Good for them. One of the meanest "don't let the door hit your ass on the way out" columns I saw was Peter Suderman's in Reason. (I would pay $9.95/mo. for a webcam of the Suderman - McArdle dinner table. That has got to be the best show in the world.)

To your direct question, jg, I think it is one thing -- and a good thing -- for a sitting Congressperson to put all the chips on #22 and face the consequences. Ron Paul and Justin Amash have had great careers doing just that.

But Speaker Ryan accepted a leadership position. Like the WSJ Ed Page, I do not think he wanted it. Once he did, he is now betting for the whole House GOP Caucus.

My problem with his libertarian detractors (and there is a bootlegger and Baptist coalition) like Suderman is that there is ZZZZEEEEEERRRRROOOOO appetite for austerity. The President of his own party doesn't care. The GOP base doesn't care. This quixotic strike you seek has no backup outside Liberty on the Rocks -- and they won't vote because of Public Choice Theory.

I think he did a good job herding the fractious cats of the GOP caucus and sublimating his preferred policies. Accepting the Speakership gives him institutional and party-wide responsibilities.

Posted by jk at April 12, 2018 5:51 PM
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