In a somewhat contentious interview on ABC’s “This Week,” Congressman Paul Ryan discussed immigration reform, the budget and his thoughts on his role in the 2016 presidential race.
The show’s host, Jonathan Karl, pressed Ryan on his previous positive comments on the president’s immigration plan, outlined in the State of the Union address, and was asked if he still thought it was a “good sign.”
“I did think that his words were measured and productive in the State of the Union,” Ryan said. Referring to the leak of the president’s plan over the weekend, he added, “But putting this — leaking this out does set things in the wrong direction.”
“There are groups in the House and the Senate working together to get this done, and when he does things like this, it makes it much more difficult to do that, and that’s why I think this particular move, very counterproductive,” Ryan said. “I have a long record of immigration reform. I’m not a johnny-come-lately on this issue. We’ve always believed there is a way of doing it while respecting the rule of law.”
Ryan was equally outspoken on the direction of budget talks between the House and the Senate.
“When you had no budget passing the Senate for four years, when the president is going to be about a month late in proposing his budget, there’s no leadership on the other side of the aisle and therefore no agreement,” Ryan said.
Given the recent controversy over Karl Rove getting involved in Republican primaries, Ryan was quizzed as to whether he thought Rove’s endorsement would hurt him if he chose to run.
“There was an article in Politico about your political future saying you are less inclined to run for president,” Karl said. “And this quote caught my eye: ‘Paul will never say he’s not running for president because the constant speculation carries too many advantages,’ said a longtime friend. ‘He will keep answering the questions in a way that will keep nosy political reporters interested.’”
“Now, Congressman,” Karl continued, “at risk of being a nosy political reporter here, is it true, are you considerably less likely now to run for president in 2016?”
“Will I or won’t I? I don’t know. I literally do not know the answer to these questions about what is the best role for me to play to fix these problems for our country in the future,” Ryan said. “I’m not for closing any opportunity. I may or I may not.”
See the entire This Week interview here:
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