Washington: House Republicans renominated Speaker Paul D. Ryan as their leader on Tuesday, quieting rumours of an initial revolt in the party in the wake of feuding between Ryan and US President-elect Donald Trump.
To retain the speaker’s position, Ryan will still have to clear a vote by the full House when the new Congress assembles in January — when he must win at least 218 votes, The New York Times reported.
With the results of a few contests outstanding, Republicans will hold at least 239 seats, leaving a relatively healthy margin for dissent in their ranks. The House Republicans said in a Twitter message that Ryan’s selection was unanimous.
But Ryan will have more than his contentious relationship with Trump to navigate. Stephen K. Bannon, the former chairman of Breitbart News, whom Trump named as his chief strategist, is a longtime critic of Ryan.
Though he endorsed Trump and urged Americans to vote for him in the days leading up to the lection, Ryan repeatedly criticized the president-elect’s more inflammatory statements during the campaign, once criticizing his proposed ban on Muslims as ‘not what this country stands for’.
After the release of a 2005 recording in which Trump boasted in vulgar terms about sexually assaulting women, Ryan disinvited him to a planned joint appearance in Wisconsin and told Republicans he would no longer defend him nor campaign for him.
Trump had said before his victory that Ryan should be punished for not offering his full support.
First Published | 16 November 2016 9:37 AM