WITHIN CITY LIMITS: Episode VI, In Defense of Paul Ryan.
By Nick Vaughn, Guest Columnist
With Donald Trump being the presumptive GOP nominee, the supposed goal of the national party is to begin to “heal and unite.” But with this being the new goal of the national party, how come Speaker Paul Ryan, the most powerful elected Republican, is going against this strategy set forth by Chairman Reince Priebus?
Ryan has said that he is not ready to support Trump and I do not blame him. Now, before my conservative friends jump down my throat for that, let me clear one thing up: he said he is not ready to support him yet. Honestly, neither am I. Although I am not sure I will ever be ready and willing to support him.
Now, we can think of this in two different ways. On the one hand we could paint Paul Ryan as a fake conservative, establishment, politically correct, bought and paid for politician. You know, the stuff that is exactly wrong with DC. Or, we can be reasonable individuals and realize that Paul Ryan is most certainly not a fake conservative (if he isn’t conservative I am not sure what conservatism is), he is instead a pragmatist willing to point out and understand the flaws of a candidate that supposedly is what the majority of Republicans want (even though 60% of Republican voters voted for someone other than Trump).
Paul Ryan may very well eventually support Trump, he might not. The bigger question is why is pragmatism such a rejected idea among the Republican base? I saw it to a lesser extent in the 2014 midterms, but it has finally come to a head here in 2016. This idea that we shouldn’t work with Democrats and when we do it’s a sign of weakness is the biggest tragedy in American politics. In an interview with the Associated Press, Ryan said: “We will need a standard bearer that can unify all Republicans, all conservatives, all wings of our party, and then go to the country with an appealing agenda, and we have work to do on this front, and I think our nominee has to lead in that effort.”
This quote is meaningful because it points to the inclusiveness and pragmatic ideals that Ryan holds. It is especially telling when we see Donald Trump go and say that he doesn’t want Ryan’s support anyway and he wants to unite most Republicans but some he “doesn’t want.” Is this the man we want leading our party into the future? Because his direction isn’t pointed anywhere but down. Donald Trump is the most immature candidate ever nominated by a major party and his supporters are so rabidly in love with him that they can’t see they are being led straight off a cliff.
Paul Ryan is trying to salvage this mess that has become the Republican Party. I definitely do not blame him for holding off on supporting someone who has broken Reagan’s 11th commandment time and time again, who has appealed to people’s deep seated fears, and has proposed plans extremely ludicrous and laughably unfeasible. The question is not why doesn’t Paul Ryan support Trump, because that is very clear. Paul Ryan is a pragmatist and wants to save his party. The real question is: why do you support him?
Don’t say he speaks his mind and rebukes political correctness, because those vague blanket statements won’t do here. Let me know in the comments why you do or don’t support Trump. I want to hear from you!
Also, thank you for your patience. For several different reasons I was not able to continue writing for the blog during the Primary. Have no fear, though — I am back!
I leave you with this, the quote of the day: