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President Trump, Gov. Walker, lawmakers react to Paul Ryan retirement announcement

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Local and national leaders all across the country are reacting and releasing statements after the news that House Speaker Paul Ryan will not seek re-election this November.

Ryan's office released this statement to CBS 58:

“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.” –Brendan Buck, Counselor to the Speaker

President Trump tweeted that Ryan, "is a truly good man" and "he will leave a legacy achievement that nobody can question."

Vice President Mike Pence sent this statement:

"Few Americans have done more to advance the conservative agenda over the last 20 years than Paul Ryan and I will miss his leadership and friendship when he leaves Congress at the end of this year.

Paul is my friend, a former colleague, a true patriot, and I congratulate him on his long service to Wisconsin and to the American people.

As Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan was instrumental in enacting President Trump’s agenda and we will be always be grateful for his partnership and support.

Under his leadership, House Republicans delivered for the American people. Paul Ryan has been a fierce defender of our military, a leader in ushering historic tax reform through Congress, and a public servant with a heart for helping lift up the less fortunate.

I know Paul will continue to be a great representative for the people of Wisconsin through the rest of his term and we will continue to work every day with him to keep our promises to the American people.

Thank you Paul Ryan for your decades of service to our country. God bless you, Janna, and your three wonderful children, Liza, Charlie, and Sam."

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker released the following statement:

"As dear friends of Paul and Janna for more than 20 years, Tonette and I simply say “thank you” to them and their family. On behalf of the more than five and a half million people of Wisconsin, we thank them for their deep dedication and service to our state and our country. While Paul leaves behind a far-reaching, reform-minded legacy and a long list of achievements in Congress, I believe this is just the beginning for him."

U.S. Senator Ron Johnson (R):

“Paul Ryan is a person of true integrity who I have had the great fortune to know over the last eight years. He has served Janesville, southeastern Wisconsin and our nation honorably. We should all be grateful for his sacrifice and understand his desire to be a full time Dad.”

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D) 

“Before I was elected to the Senate I served with Paul Ryan in the House and have spent many years working with him on behalf of the people of Wisconsin. We know each other well and while we have different views on policy, I consider him a friend and have a lot of respect for him as a person and a public servant. This was a difficult decision to make, and I wish Paul and his family all the best in the future.”

Speaker Robin Vos (R - Rochester)

“When I met Paul Ryan in 1998 during his first run for Congress, it was obvious he was someone of incredible talent and amazing ability. Now 20 years later, his record and accomplishments speak for themselves.

“Paul has been perhaps the best congressman Wisconsin has ever sent to Washington and also one of the best speakers to have gaveled Congress into session. His commitment to serving the people of Wisconsin and the United States is unparalleled.

“I am happy for my friend and his family, but sad for the 1st Congressional District and our country because men like him don't come around often.”

Congresswoman Gwen Moore (D-WI 4th District)

“Speaker Ryan and I have worked together for many years. We served together on the Budget Committee for nearly a decade and shared countless flights to and from Wisconsin. As he considers the legacy he will leave in Congress, I hope he finds the courage to put the interests of the American public first. I wish him and his family the best of luck as he embarks on the next chapter of his career.”

Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI 5th District)

“Paul Ryan will leave an indelible mark upon this institution. I am honored to have served with him and blessed to call him my friend. I’ve had the privilege of knowing Paul and his family throughout his career — from first-time candidate and junior lawmaker, to vice presidential candidate and committee chairman, to his current role as Speaker of the House. I wish him the best and know that he looks forward to spending more time with his wife and kids.”

State Senator David Craig (R-28th District)

“Amy and I give our sincerest thanks to Paul for his distinguished and determined service to Wisconsin and our nation. I am proud to call Paul a friend, and as a former aide, I am honored to have worked for the guiding voice in Congress for reforming our government in the areas that need it the most.

“Paul has not only served with integrity in his representation of the 1st District but has been the steadfast leader of Republican principals and a passionate communicator of conservative ideas. His ability to shape policy and move the conservative agenda forward has been remarkable. His retirement will be a great loss to Congress and the nation.

“We wish him and Janna all the best with gratitude for all they have done for Wisconsin, the nation, and the conservative movement – it is a legacy of accomplishment that will have a lasting impact on our state and nation. We wish the entire Ryan family the very best in whatever lies ahead.”


House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) released the following statement:

“No Speaker of the House in history has achieved more in such a short time as Paul Ryan. He set a bold agenda for Congress – reform the tax code, rebuild the military, restore the free market to health care, and help move people from dependency to opportunity – all to put our nation back on a path to prosperity and renew the American Dream.

"I had the privilege of being his seatmate on the Ways and Means Committee for sixteen years, and to follow in his footsteps as Chairman of the Ways & Means Committee. We would never have achieved once-in-a-generation tax reform without his vision, his dogged determination, and his optimistic leadership. As a result, millions of middle-class American families keep more of what they earn, Main Street optimism is at a twenty-year high, and American jobs are coming back from overseas.

"I am so grateful for his vision, his encouragement, and his friendship. I wish Paul, Janna, and their children the very best in this next chapter of their lives.”

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement:

“Paul is one of my best friends. He has fearlessly led this conference and championed ideas that are moving this country forward. We enacted generational tax reform, we are rebuilding our military, and we passed historic legislation to protect the lives of the most vulnerable. Paul’s leadership has pulled each of these and countless other victories across the finish line.

"Obviously, today is a sad day for me personally and for our conference, but Paul’s selfless leadership has put our conference and our country in a better place. There is more work to do this year, and we will do it together as a team. We will continue to carry the flag we carried as Young Guns, fighting every day to earn the support of the American people and continue to make our country stronger.”

Former Speaker of the House John Boehner said this:

“Paul Ryan has done an extraordinary job leading the House through turbulent waters at a time when the political discourse in America is changing. His budgets during my own speakership showed the American people our conservative vision for addressing the drivers of our debt and restoring a path to prosperity for our children. And under his own speakership, his deep-seated belief in pro-growth tax reform has become a reality that is bringing jobs home to America. I admire Paul for his service, appreciate his friendship, and look forward to spending some time with him as a private citizen in the not-too-distant future.”

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