Paul Ryan

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Paul Ryan

Paul Davis Ryan (born January 29, 1970) is an American retired politician who served as the 54th speaker of the United States House of Representatives from October 2015 to January 2019. He was the 2012 Republican Party vice presidential nominee running alongside Mitt Romney, losing to incumbent president Barack Obama and vice president Joe Biden.


  • But the reason I got involved in public service, by and large, if I had to credit one thinker, one person, it would be Ayn Rand. And the fight we are in here, make no mistake about it, is a fight of individualism versus collectivism.
  • We don't have a tax revenue problem in Washington, we have a spending problem in Washington.
  • This whole thing is a big gamble, but it's probably the best gamble to take before throwing in the towel and allowing sectarian genocide to take over. I personally give this three to six months to find out.
  • This law, by and large, extends the same kind of crime-fighting tools we apply to gangs and mobsters to terrorists. That's not something that is an infringement of our civil liberties.
  • Josh Smith: But specifically where you stand when it comes to rape, and should it be legal for a woman to get an abortion if she's —
    Paul Ryan: Yeah, well, so I'm very proud of my pro-life record, and I've always adopted the idea — the position that the method of conception doesn't change the definition of life.
  • Mr. Chairman, delegates, and fellow citizens: I am honored by the support of this convention for vice president of the United States. I accept the duty to help lead our nation out of a jobs crisis and back to prosperity — and I know we can do this. I accept the calling of my generation to give our children the America that was given to us, with opportunity for the young and security for the old — and I know that we are ready. Our nominee is sure ready. His whole life has prepared him for this moment — to meet serious challenges in a serious way, without excuses and idle words. After four years of getting the run-around, America needs a turnaround, and the man for the job is Governor Mitt Romney.


  • Ideas, passionately promoted and put to the test—that’s what politics can be.That’s what our country can be...It can be a confident America, where we have a basic faith in politics and leaders. It can be a place where we’ve earned that faith. All of us as leaders can hold ourselves to the highest standards of integrity and decency. Instead of playing to your anxieties, we can appeal to your aspirations. Instead of playing the identity politics of “our base” and “their base,” we unite people around ideas and principles. And instead of being timid, we go bold.
  • Politics can be a battle of ideas, not insults. It can be about solutions. It can be about making a difference. It can be about always striving to do better. That’s what it can be and what it should be. This is the system our Founders envisioned. It’s messy. It’s complicated. It’s infuriating at times. And it’s a beautiful thing too.
  • America's greatness is built on the principles of liberty and preserved by the men and women who wear the uniform to defend it. As I have said on numerous occasions, a religious test for entering our country is not reflective of these fundamental values. I reject it. Many Muslim Americans have served valiantly in our military, and made the ultimate sacrifice. Captain Khan was one such brave example. His sacrifice—and that of Khizr and Ghazala Khan—should always be honored. Period.

"Interview With House Speaker Paul Ryan On Poverty And Politics" 15 July 2016

  • It was pretty clear to me that people were pretty, pretty hurting in this country and pretty anxious. So no, I wasn't surprised. It just — it just became [that] the volume and the noise level got much higher.
  • But I also see a problem where a lot of people don't believe in the American idea anymore. The condition of your birth doesn't determine the outcome of your life. This is America, you can make it. You work hard, play by the rules, you can rise, you can do well. That's what we're taught, that's what we believe, that's what we think of as America. Problem is, there are just generations of people in this country who do not think that.
  • I find what happens is both parties speak to their party bases to win their primary elections, but what I think is necessary to have a national election worthy of being a majority party, we have to sell converts to conservatism. We have to go out and explain why our principles apply equally and universally to everybody and why our ideas are better than the alternatives.


  • First of all, I can see that you love your daughter and you are a nice person who has a great future ahead of you and I hope your future is here.... This is not the focus.... And so, what we have to do is find a way to make sure that you can get right with the law and we've got to do this in a good way, so that the rug doesn't get pulled out from under you and your family gets separated...but if you're worried about, you know, some deportation force coming, knocking on your door this year, don't worry about that.... Secure the border and the people who are violent criminals, repeat offenders who keep coming back in, we've got to focus on that.
    • CNN Town Hall Meeting, responding to DACA audience member about her concern that she could be deported by ICE, CNN "Transcripts" aired 12 January 2017.
  • “The fatal conceit of Obamacare is that we’re just gonna make everybody buy our health insurance at the federal-government level, young and healthy people are going to go into the market and pay for the older, sicker people. So, the young healthy person is going to be made to buy health care, and they’re going to pay for the person, you know, gets breast cancer in her 40s or who gets heart disease in his 50s. […] The whole idea of Obamacare is … the people who are healthy pay for the people who are sick. It’s not working, and that’s why it’s in a death spiral.”

Young Guns: A New Generation of Conservative Leaders (2010)

  • They shocked the American people. They shocked us. They certainly shocked me. I wasn't sure what kind of president Obama was going to be. I thought, maybe this guy is going to be a centrist-his rhetoric was centrist. His upbringing and history didn't suggest he was centrist but his rhetoric did. So I was thinking, well, we'll see. And then-bam!-out of the gates, these people had a hardcore-left agenda. We, along with the American people, were spectators while they took this government very far left, very fast. But what became so unnerving to us and the American people is that they used our rhetoric. They used the rhetoric of freedom and choice and opportunity to sell an inherently statist agenda; to sell an agenda that was completely the opposite of its rhetoric. And people started to realize that they were trying to transform the country using the rhetoric of the Right to push the substance of the Left.
    • p. 7-8
  • It's a fundamental misunderstanding of human nature and of the concepts of liberty, freedom, and self-determination. It's a fundamental misunderstanding of economics. He (Obama) believes that the pie is fixed and that he needs to more equitably divide up the slices.
    • p. 10-11
  • We have to give the American people a referendum. We will win this referendum if we have it now. If we wait and delay five or six years we will lose this referendum. The public is way ahead of the political class. They get that things are broken. They get that we're spending their kids' inheritance and mortgaging their future. They are ready to be talked to like adults and not like children. So when they see the demagoguery that is directed toward people or ideas that are sincere and are real, it doesn't work anymore. The Democrats are going to come at us with their old playbook. They're going to tap into the emotions of fear, anger, and envy. But that's not aspirational. That's not hope and change, and I don't think it's going to work anymore.
    • p. 15
  • Americans today are being asked to subscribe to an ideology that is against the American idea. It's an ideology that says that government creates rights-and government takes them away. This ideology rejects the goal of government as securing equal opportunity, it demands that government create equal results. It is an ideology that treats citizens like children and politicians like divinities. It is not an ideology that need prevail in American life. Not on our watch.
    • p. 108

About Paul Ryan

  • On the other hand, to anyone paying the slightest bit of attention to facts, Ryan's speech was an apparent attempt to set the world record for the greatest number of blatant lies and misrepresentations slipped into a single political speech. On this measure, while it was Romney who ran the Olympics, Ryan earned the gold.
  • I think Paul [Ryan], for example, the head of the Budget Committee, has looked at the budget and has made a serious proposal. I've read it. I can tell you what's in it. And there's some ideas in there that I would agree with but there's some ideas we should have a healthy debate about because I don't agree with them. The major driver of our long-term liabilities, everybody here knows, is Medicare and Medicaid and our healthcare spending. Nothing comes close. That's going to be what our children have to worry about. Now, Paul's approach, and I want to be careful not to simplify this, I know you've got a lot of detail in your plan, but, if I understand it correctly, would say, we're going to provide vouchers of some sort for current Medicare recipients at the current level. No?
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