U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan said he will not be accepting the Republican presidential nominee at the July convention.
Speaking at a press conference, he said, “Let me be clear: I do not want, nor will I accept the Republican nomination.” He, however, is launching a campaign come this fall, NBC News reported. He will actively lobby for his job as House Speaker to be independent from the congressional Republicans – no matter who becomes the GOP presidential nominee.
There were speculations that Ryan may enter the playing field as a late contender should there be a convention in July. Such a situation will arise if neither of the three Republican candidates – Donald Trump, John Kasich or Ted Cruz – are able to earn the required number of delegates.
As reported by BBC News, while business mogul Trump is the front runner at present, there is a possibility he may not be able to win the 1,237 delegates needed to clinch a nomination.
Keeping in mind that Ryan has expressed his disinclination towards being a candidate in the presidential race, his supporters argued that he had spoken similarly when he said he would not become the speaker of the House. Ryan called for the adoption of a rule according to which only those candidates should be allowed who have run to be the presidential nominee of the party, CNN reported.
“I believe you should only choose from a person who has actually participated in the primary,” Ryan added. “Count me out.”
When asked which of the three candidates should be the presidential nominee, Ryan said, “I’ll leave that up to the delegates.”
However, conservatives expressed their concern – even before Ryan announced he will not be accepting the bid – that introducing Ryan as a late contender at the Republican convention in July would not be ideal. Speaking in this regard, Republican South Carolina Rep. Mick Mulvaney said, “The one thing that would completely destroy the party is coming out (of Cleveland) with Paul Ryan as the nominee.”
Similar concerns were shared by Virginia Rep. Dave Brat. “To parachute someone in who hasn’t run for the office, who hasn’t done the grueling work of campaigning — if you want to do something that heightens cynicism to all-time high, that would do it,” he said.