Remember way back in October when that old “Access Hollywood” tape surfaced with Donald Trump’s locker-room comments to Billy Bush? Apparently, that was the straw that broke the camel’s back for Speaker Paul Ryan’s support of candidate Trump.
But did it end there?
Breitbart has released a portion of conference call with Ryan and members of the House GOP from October in which it certainly sounds like Ryan will have trouble supporting Donald Trump…EVER.
Per Breitbart, On a never-before-released private October conference call with House Republican members, House Speaker Paul Ryan told his members in the U.S. House of Representatives he was abandoning then-GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump forever and would never defend him ever again.
In the Oct. 10, 2016 call, from right after the Access Hollywood tape of Trump was leaked in the weeks leading up to the election, Ryan does not specify that he will never defend Trump on just the Access Hollywood tape—he says clearly he is done with Trump altogether.
“His comments are not anywhere in keeping with our party’s principles and values,” Ryan said. “There are basically two things that I want to make really clear, as for myself as your Speaker. I am not going to defend Donald Trump—not now, not in the future. As you probably heard, I disinvited him from my first congressional district GOP event this weekend—a thing I do every year. And I’m not going to be campaigning with him over the next 30 days.”
The October conference call apparently was intended only for House Republican members. It’s unclear which or how many House Republicans took part in the call, whether the participants knew it was being recorded, who made the recording, or whether a recording exists of the entire call.
Now, the reason why this call and Ryan’s comments are interesting at the moment is because Ryan is needing Trump’s support to help push through his Obamacare 2.0 bill. But as Col. West has written here, conservatives are not happy with the bill as it stands and might not be able to support it in the House — let alone the Senate — without significant changes.
However, Breitbart reports Ryan has been unwilling to negotiate on the specifics of his bill, which has earned multiple negative monikers like “Obamacare 2.0,” “Obamacare Lite,” “RyanCare,” and “RINO-CARE” from detractors. But President Trump and his true allies, despite what Ryan’s allies inside the White House say publicly, have been much more willing to negotiate, according to House and Senate conservatives who have had direct conversations with the president.
“We have gotten a signal from the White House that the bill might be completely pulled and a more transparent and inclusive process could start as early as next week,” one senior Republican Senate aide told Breitbart News on Friday. “House leadership misled the White House on how popular this bill would be with conservatives.”
Yikes! This could be the first major showdown between President Trump and the GOP establishment. Anyone want to start a pool to bet on how this ends up?
[Note: This article was written by Michele Hickford]