Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan says he is not running for president and will not accept his party’s nomination at a contested convention. But Paul Ryan is also one of the few remaining national Republican figures whose reputation with the general public is not in the toilet. And Paul Ryan, in the midst of an election whose Republican front-runner is basically a white nationalist, also just posted a heavily produced 43-second video of himself talking about how public figures should try to unite the country instead of relying on “identity politics.”
(The excerpt is taken from an speech Ryan delivered on March 16 to a “bipartisan group of House interns.”)
Is Ryan setting himself up as the guy who can unite a divided party at a contentious convention? Just generally trying to push his unpopular party toward a more effective style of self-presentation? Who knows. One thing is for sure, though: There actually already is a political party that reliably draws support from a diverse range of Americans, and it’s not Paul Ryan’s.