Conservatives don’t trust Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.
He’s routinely failed to deliver on policy and has proven to be nothing more than an establishment rubber stamp.
And one meeting at the White House has put him on notice that his job is in jeopardy.
After Paul Ryan failed at jamming Obamacare 2.0 through Congress, the White House took over negotiations with conservatives.
Vice President Mike Pence took the lead, and the GOP appears close to a deal on the bill to repeal Obamacare.
But moderate Republicans who don’t really want to repeal Obamacare remain an obstacle.
The Trump administration did their part in negotiating with conservatives and now they’re counting on Ryan to bring his fellow moderates along and pass an Obamacare repeal bill.
And Chief of Staff Reince Priebus warned Ryan he could lose his job as Speaker if he fails.
“Without so much as a heads-up to the speaker, Trump administration officials last week began whispering to reporters that an Obamacare repeal vote was expected Wednesday, the day after lawmakers returned from recess.
That wasn’t Ryan’s plan at all; his team needed time to whip votes for the compromise the White House struck with wary conservatives. But impatient senior Trump officials wanted to pressure Ryan to move fast, administration and Hill sources said.
That very public and awkward display — which sent House GOP leaders into a frenzy trying to tamp down expectations — was just the latest example of the Trump administration pressuring Ryan to deliver. Over the past few weeks, White House officials have leaned on Ryan to show progress on the health care repeal: At a private meeting two weeks ago, chief ofstaff Reince Priebus said Ryan’s speakership could be in jeopardy if the House failed to revive the health care plan.
When Ryan couldn’t persuade conservatives in the House Freedom Caucus to back the bill, the White House pushed him aside and started talking to conservatives about how to get them to “yes.” If those changes to the bill will win over a large slice of the House Freedom Caucus, as they’re expected to this week, Ryan will find himself under enormous pressure to bring enough moderates on board to ensure passage.
The situation carries a big upside for the speaker but also potential perils. Passage of a health care bill would be a huge accomplishment for Ryan — perhaps his biggest as speaker — but it’s bound to put him in the doghouse with moderate Republicans.”
Paul Ryan is already deeply unpopular for failing to deliver on the GOP’s seven year promise to repeal Obamacare.
An NBC/Wall Street Journal poll found just 22 percent of Americans view Ryan favorably – with a dismal 40 percent unfavorable rating.
That 18-point gap was just one point in the same poll taken in February.
The failure to repeal Obamacare has tanked Ryan’s numbers.
And actually, there are two ways he could lose his position as Speaker.
One is that, because he failed to make good on the agenda Republicans campaigned on, GOP voters will not be motivated to turn out in the 2018 midterms which would turn control of the House over to Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats.
The other way he could be removed is in the vote for a new Speaker.
If the GOP retains control of the House in 2018, then Ryan would need 218 votes on the floor of the House to keep his job.
Since all Democrats will vote for their chosen leader, it means all of Ryan’s votes must come from Republicans.
Representative Justin Amash of Michigan has said Ryan should be replaced and any additional failures on the Speaker’s part could increase those calls.
Conservatives deserver a Speaker of the House who will deliver on the agenda that put Republicans in power.
And increasingly, it appears it is not going to be Paul Ryan.