Ryan’s challenge: Bridging the House generational divide

30 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

John Boehner, ‘normal guy,’ exits into the sunset.

First elected in the midterm Republican wave in 1994, Boehner played a part in then-Speaker Newt Gingrich’s revolution, then saw his quick rise to the stop falter when he lost his position as chairman of the House Republican Conference in 1998. A tearful Speaker John Boehner worked his way through a box of tissues today while delivering his adieu to the House, which elected Representative Paul Ryan of Wisconsin to succeed him.Abilene, Kan.; and Washington — In the prairie town of Abilene, Kan. – boyhood home of GOP President Dwight Eisenhower – two young men are very concerned about the future of the Republican Party.Lukens was a Republican lawmaker from the Cincinnati area who was accused of paying a mother money and gifts so that he could have sex with her 16-year-old daughter. Rather than leave Congress, Boehner went to a House education committee, where he helped draft and pass the No Child Left Behind law with Democratic Sen.

Truman was unexpectedly thrust into power. “The day after Franklin Roosevelt died and Truman became president, he told a group of reporters: ‘If you ever pray, pray for me now. . . . The deal sets the budget of the government through the 2016 and 2017 fiscal years and eases punishing spending caps by providing $80 billion more for military and domestic programs. Boehner said, “There’s a difference between being asked to do something and being called to do something.” Somewhere along that asking-calling continuum is arm-twisting, kicking and screaming, which better describes what went into Mr.

House on Thursday in a day of high political theater, a young new leader for a fractured Congress, charged with healing Republican divides and quieting the chaos of Capitol Hill. “Let’s prove ourselves worthy,” Ryan urged from the House dais where he was sworn into the job, second in line to the presidency, after an extraordinary month of unrest for Congress. The measure was expected to clear an initial legislative hurdle well after midnight in a dead-of-night vote resulting from the Senate’s convoluted legislative timetables and delaying tactics by opponents.

And that lifts the spirits of both Travis Sawyer, who like Speaker Ryan belongs to Generation X, and his friend Kenny Roelofsen, a Millennial. “I’m excited,” says Mr. Many in the GOP majority planned to vote “no,” including presidential candidates Marco Rubio, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, who canceled campaign events to rush back to Washington to oppose it. The nays are members of the Freedom Caucus, the conservatives whose idea of freedom at times involves hogtying both the House and the federal government. Ryan, 45, the Republicans’ 2012 vice presidential nominee, was elected speaker in a rare, live roll-call vote on the House floor, with each lawmaker standing in turn to declare his choice.

He remembers Ryan as Mitt Romney’s running mate in 2012, and he hopes that the new speaker, known for his conservative budget proposals, can “get down to the dollars and cents” of fixing America’s debt problem. When Boehner and Nussle and their Gang of Seven decided to rip the Band-Aid off the festering wound that was the House of Representatives, it was a shock to the system. The final tally showed 236 votes for Ryan, 184 for Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California, the Democrats’ candidate, and nine for Republican Daniel Webster of Florida. Roelofsen, who is part owner of a family tractor-parts business. “Plus,” he adds, “Ryan’s younger, and I like to see that, too.” Ryan may not be running for president (yet).

But his energy and charisma, as well as his “opportunity for all” message, could help his party as it tries to entice more young voters, observers say. But in the end most Republicans swung behind Ryan, underscoring the strong desire of nearly all members for a fresh start after years of conflict and GOP infighting. With his wife and three kids from Janesville, Wisconsin, watching on from the gallery, along with presidential running mate Mitt Romney, Ryan accepted the gavel from Pelosi and pledged a new day for the Congress. One way Ryan can help attract Millennials is to unite the fractious Republican conference, says Douglas Heye, a former House GOP leadership aide. “Millennial voters are as tired as anyone, if not more so, by the constant bickering in Washington, and Paul Ryan is someone who wants to really break that,” Mr.

And without directly mentioning them or the troubles they’ve caused, he promised to bring the GOP’s rebels back into the fold. “We need to let every member contribute — not once they have earned their stripes but right now,” Ryan said. “Open up the process. The House is expected to vote as early as next week on a $325 billion, six-year bill that authorizes payments to states for their road, bridge and transit projects, the first such legislation in six years. Currently, however, the bill has guaranteed funding for only three of those years, and it’s up to the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee, Ryan’s old panel, to fill in the rest. A respected minority will work in good faith.” Boehner, who started life as an Ohio bartender’s son with 11 siblings, delivered an emotional farewell address marveling, “This, too, can really happen to you.” Boehner’s parting gift to Ryan was the budget deal revealed Monday night after secretive negotiations among congressional leaders and the White House. Newt Gingrich, who had just recently become the whip, launched a surprise attack against his own president during a budget drama, splitting the Republican Party down the middle, and sinking the fortunes of George H.W.

After all, if the Freedom Caucus’s principles require opposing anything that violates their principles, they’ve got no choice but to oppose themselves for violating their principles to elect Mr. Ryan’s swearing-in came almost exactly a month after Boehner shocked the House by revealing his plans to resign from Congress at the end of October. He said he had no appetite for a floor vote on his speakership threatened by conservatives, who contended he was yielding to President Barack Obama in a government shutdown fight over Planned Parenthood. Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy was Boehner’s likeliest successor, but was quickly undone by a gaffe suggesting the House’s special Benghazi committee was set up to drive down Hillary Rodham Clinton’s poll numbers.

A 2014 study by the Pew Research Center shows that Millennials vote heavily for Democrats and support liberal views on many issues, from same-sex marriage and marijuana legalization to support for activist government. The Michel team was a bit skeptical, and polls showed that nobody really had heard of it as they went into the polls, but the contract gave Republicans a good agenda from which to work when they eventually did take the majority in 1995. Jody Hice of Georgia. “I have invested a lot of faith in Speaker Ryan’s word, and I will expect nothing less than a full return on that investment.” He and Romney touted a plan to turn the costly Medicare system into a voucher plan for future seniors – though traditional Medicare would still be available.

But included in that orthodoxy is a kind of inclusiveness that will attract young people to the GOP, says Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute, a right-leaning think tank in Washington. His mentor was the late Republican Jack Kemp, a congressman and vice-presidential candidate, who championed “enterprise zones” offering tax breaks to foster businesses in poor neighborhoods.

Ryan spent much of 2014 visiting urban neighborhoods, and welfare reform is one of his priorities. “We are going to do all we can so working people get their strength back and people not working get their lives back. Boehner may or may not have been implicated in the coup against Newt in 1997, but no matter if he was involved or not, the whole episode exposed the deep cracks in the leadership team. Because of the confluence of history, I had found myself working for DeLay, but I never shared the animosity that some in the DeLay world felt towards Boehner.

Opportunity for all – that is our motto,” Ryan said in his acceptance speech Thursday. “Paul Ryan believes very strongly in a new kind of message, a new opportunity society,” Mr. Democrats such as Senator Sanders can offer “halfway” solutions, he says, but Republicans such as Ryan want to tap aspirations. “It’s not a generational thing. Ryan, he says, is helping conservatives remember why they are conservatives. “It’s not because we care about tax breaks for billionaires, for Pete’s sake. Ironically, not long after the John became the speaker, we moved right next door to his basement apartment and I got a chance to see his daily routine when he was in Washington.

It was the day after his most impressive achievement, convincing Pope Francis to address a joint meeting of Congress, that he announced he was retiring.

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