Pro-Life Rep. Paul Ryan Has Enough Votes From Republicans to Become Speaker

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 22, 2015   |   1:52PM   |   Washington, DC

With various groups representing each of the factions of the Republican Party in the House of Representatives endorsing his candidacy for Speaker of the House, pro-life Congressman Paul Ryan appears to have enough votes to become the next Speaker of the House. The next Speaker will replace outgoing pro-life Speaker John Boehner of Ohio.

With moderate, conservative and very conservative factions battling each other for the legislative direction of the party in Congress and how it responds to pro-abortion President Barack Obama, Ryan had been initially reluctant to run for Speaker but acquiesced and said he would seek the post only if the various elements of the GOP came together behind him — preferring not to lead a divided caucus at odds with itself.

But Ryan met with members of the very conservative House Freedom Caucus on Wednesday and received the support of most of its members, even though conservative Republican, and HFC member, Rep. Daniel Webster of Florida is still technically a candidate for Speaker. The moderate Republican Tuesday Group has also lined up behind Boehner and, today, the conservative Republican Study Committee announced its endorsement of the pro-life Wisconsin congressman for Speaker.

RSC Chairman Bill Flores (R-TX) released the following statement:

“After hearing Paul lay out his vision for the future of the Republican conference, I am confident that he is the right person to lead the House going forward. He has the policy expertise, conservative principles and strong values we need in our next Speaker. He is a member of the Republican Study Committee and has shown he is willing to work with fellow conservatives to address our policy and process goals. I personally worked closely with Paul on the House Budget Committee from 2011-2014 to craft four transformational budgets and believe he will lead with the bold, fresh ideas that America needs.”

Ryan addressed Republican Study Committee members at their weekly meeting. Following the meeting, the RSC Steering Committee voted overwhelming to endorse Chairman Ryan. The Steering Committee is made up of 10 RSC members, 6 former RSC chairmen and Chairman Flores.

The Hill has more on the latest maneuvering that has Ryan at enough votes to win the Speaker’s gavel.

The House Freedom Caucus (HFC) stopped short of formally endorsing Rep. Paul Ryan for Speaker on Wednesday but said a “super-majority” of the group backs him, handing the Wisconsin Republican enough votes to win the top leadership post.

About two-thirds of the conservative group backs Ryan for the Speakership — just shy of the 80 percent threshold needed for the caucus to issue a formal endorsement, said Rep. Raúl Labrador (R-Idaho), a co-founder and spokesman for the roughly 40-member bloc of conservatives.

“A super-majority of the Freedom Caucus has agreed to support Paul Ryan,” Labrador told reporters after an hour-long, closed-door caucus meeting. “The ball is now in Paul Ryan’s court.”

“I look forward to hearing from the other two caucuses by the end of the week, but I believe this is a positive step toward a unified Republican team,” Ryan said in a statement.



Ryan has been a strong pro-life advocate during his time in Congress and holds a 100% pro-life voting record. Most recently, Congressman Ryan voted for the House measure that would de-fund Planned Parenthood and the companion bill to ensure the continuing resolution would de-fund Planned Parenthood.

“I don’t see how a person can separate their public life from their private life or from their faith. Our faith informs us in everything we do. My faith informs me about how to take care of the vulnerable, of how to make sure that people have a chance in life,” Ryan said during the 2012 presidential debate. “Now, you want to ask basically why I’m pro-life? It’s not simply because of my Catholic faith. That’s a factor, of course. But it’s also because of reason and science.”

“You know, I think about 10 1/2 years ago, my wife Janna and I went to Mercy Hospital in Janesville where I was born, for our seven week ultrasound for our firstborn child, and we saw that heartbeat. A little baby was in the shape of a bean. And to this day, we have nicknamed our firstborn child Liza, “Bean.” Now I believe that life begins at conception,” Ryan continued.

“That’s why — those are the reasons why I’m pro-life. Now I understand this is a difficult issue, and I respect people who don’t agree with me on this, but the policy of a Romney administration will be to oppose abortions.”

When it comes to abortion, Ryan said “the Democratic Party used to say they wanted it to be safe, legal and rare. Now they support it without restriction and with taxpayer funding. Taxpayer funding in Obamacare, taxpayer funding with foreign aid. The vice president himself went to China and said that he sympathized and wouldn’t second guess their one child policy of forced abortions and sterilizations. That to me is pretty extreme.”

“We don’t think that unelected judges should make this decision; that people through their elected representatives in reaching a consensus in society through the democratic process should make this determination,” he said.