I almost hesitate in making this a story since the headline feels like “Republican endorses Republican,” but I digress. House Speaker Paul Ryan, a famous holdout from the Trump endorsement train, has now given his almost-glowing endorsement of the presumptive GOP nominee and says he will indeed vote for him in the Fall. I say “almost-glowing,” since his statement did include a caveat that Ryan will “speak his mind” on matters where they disagree.
Report from the GazetteExtra (Ryan’s hometown newspaper):
The speaker of the House of Representatives says he will vote for Donald Trump.
Rep. Paul Ryan made that statement in a column submitted Thursday for publication in The Gazette, his hometown newspaper.
The statement at least partially answers a question on many minds: whether the leader of the House Republicans and chairman of the upcoming Republican National Convention would support Trump’s candidacy.
Ryan has criticized Trump during the primary campaign. The two met May 12, but afterward Ryan said it was too soon for an endorsement.
A Ryan spokesman was asked whether Ryan’s column amounts to an endorsement. The aide’s response was unclear: “He said he’ll vote for Trump in the piece. That speaks for itself, in our view.”
Ryan wrote in the opinion piece, which is being released on this website this afternoon, that he and Trump have talked at length.
You can read Ryan’s full endorsement, now available here.
On the same day, Michigan Republican Governor Rick Snyder has stated that he will not endorse Donald Trump, report from the Detroit News:
Gov. Rick Snyder has sidelined himself in the race for president, choosing not to make an endorsement of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.
The Republican governor also did not endorse in the March 8 primary, saying he was consumed with addressing Flint’s lead-contaminated water crisis.
“I’ve stayed out of the whole thing, and I’m going to continue to,” Snyder said Wednesday in an interview with The Detroit News Editorial Board at the Mackinac Policy Conference. “I’ve got important things I want to work on in Michigan.”
A Republican Governor in a state that Trump would like to win in November is simply “staying out of the whole thing?” That seems … odd. Here’s a sitting governor in Michigan, a state that might be competitive, especially if it comes down to Clinton versus Trump, yet he is essentially voting “present” on the Presidential campaign. He’s not going as far as New Mexico Republican Governor Susana Martinez, who is actively rebuking Trump at almost every opportunity, but this isn’t much better from Snyder.
Ryan had to fall in line eventually, he’s Chairman of the Republican Convention, he would have either had to step down from that position, and not offer support, or fall in line like he did today.
I’m wondering whether any of this will change in the coming months, especially for states like Michigan if polling were to indicate that Trump actually had a shot there. Hillary Clinton still leads Michigan on average, but the gap is narrowing. Bernie Sanders is currently blowing Trump away in Michigan, but he’s still on an uphill climb toward the Democratic nomination.