Apr 13, 2018 - Politics & Policy

Paul Ryan endorses Kevin McCarthy to replace him

Paul Ryan leans over as Kevin McCarthy speaks in his ear.

Speaker Paul Ryan leans over as Kevin McCarthy speaks in his ear. Photo: Gabriella Demczuk/Getty Images

House Speaker Paul Ryan told NBC's Chuck Todd that Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy should replace him, either as Leader or Speaker, when he retires.

Why it matters: House Republicans are in an exceptionally tough spot for the midterms, and Ryan's decision to not run for reelection only added to concerns that Democrats have a shot at becoming the majority. But by having a clear replacement in place, like McCarthy who is known and trusted within the GOP, Republicans have someone they can rally behind as Nov. 6 edges closer.

"We all think that Kevin is the right person."
ā€” Paul Ryan

Yes, but: Ryan said he doesn't want to have a vote to replace him now, adding that he thinks the party needs to focus on their agenda and holding on to the majority, and anything apart from that "would be needless distraction."

View from the White House: As Axios' Jonathan Swan and Mike Allen have reported, President Trump loves McCarthy, and consults him frequently for advice.

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