Today in politics
Brendan Buck, counselor to House Speaker Paul Ryan, just sent out this statement:
"This morning Speaker Ryan shared with his colleagues that this will be his last year as a member of the House. He will serve out his full term, run through the tape, and then retire in January. After nearly twenty years in the House, the speaker is proud of all that has been accomplished and is ready to devote more of his time to being a husband and a father. While he did not seek the position, he told his colleagues that serving as speaker has been the professional honor of his life, and he thanked them for the trust they placed in him. He will discuss his decision at a press conference immediately following the member meeting."
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy is, at this early stage, likely to have the support to become the next House Speaker, a source with the House Freedom Caucus says.
Rep. Mark Meadows a frontrunner to become Majority Leader.
The source recognized that Majority Whip Steve Scalise is also gunning for the job of Speaker. However, this source stressed the next leadership will need the support of the HFC.
McCarthy is viewed as President Trump’s choice for Speaker because he is close to the President. All of this is riding on what Ryan ultimately decides in terms of his timetable for leaving Washington. But the jockeying has obviously already begun.
In calls this morning with his leadership team, House Speaker Paul Ryan made clear much of this decision was about spending time with his family, according to two sources with direct knowledge.
But he also noted that he planned to leave after this Congress and didn’t think it was fair to his district of the GOP conference to run for reelection only to leave right after.
It has long been expected that Ryan would leave after the 115th Congress, but sources close to him have said for weeks they expected he would run again in order to raise money for the party and not throw his conference into a leadership battle.
Ryan “recently” came to the conclusion that wasn’t the best path for him, one of the sources said.
President Trump has been on a tweetstorm this morning about Russia. In the latest tweet, from 9 a.m. ET, he blames the special counsel's investigation and Democrats for the US's strained relationship with Russia.
Earlier this morning, President Trump tweeted that relations between the US and Russia have never been worse, even during the Cold War.
This is all coming on the heels of an alleged chemical attack in Syria. Trump is currently weighing a US military response.
House Speaker Paul Ryan has told confidantes he is not seeking reelection and will soon announce his decision, two sources with direct knowledge of the matter told CNN Wednesday.
He is expected to address his decision in a closed-door GOP conference meeting Wednesday morning, the sources said.
President Donald Trump warned Russia on Wednesday that it should "get ready" for a missile strike on Syria, vowing to thwart any missile defenses.
The public suggestion of US military confrontation with Russia is sure to raise tensions in an already volatile situation and add more confusion to US policy in the region. Trump said earlier this month -- before the weekend's suspected chemical attack on civilians at the hands of the Assad regime -- that he wanted to withdraw US troops from Syria. Wednesday's statement is also notable because Trump has criticized his predecessors for telegraphing US military action.