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Speaker Paul Ryan won’t seek re-election to Congress

House Speaker Paul Ryan (Flickr/Gage Skidmore)
April 11, 2018

House Speaker Paul Ryan will not seek re-election to Congress, he said Wednesday, citing his family as the main reason.

“Serving as Speaker has been a great honor,” Ryan said. “Now, with all three of my kids in their teens, I am ready to set new priorities.”

Ryan, a Republican who has served nearly 20 years in the House of Representatives for the people of Wisconsin, will serve the remainder of his term and then retire in January 2019.

“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,” said Ryan’s counselor Brendan Buck.

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Axios was first to report on Ryan’s retirement, and it was later verified by the Associated Press and The New York Times.

It has long been rumored that Ryan would leave Congress.

In December, POLITICO exclusively reported that House Speaker Ryan told some close confidants that this might be his final term as Speaker.

While Ryan has mulled retirement in the past, POLITICO reported: “More recently, over closely held conversations with his kitchen cabinet, Ryan’s preference has become clear: He would like to serve through Election Day 2018 and retire ahead of the next Congress.”

“On a personal level, going home at the end of next year would allow Ryan, who turns 48 next month, to keep promises to family; his three children are in or entering their teenage years, and Ryan, whose father died at 55, wants desperately to live at home with them full-time before they begin flying the nest. The best part of this scenario, people close to the speaker emphasize: He wouldn’t have to share the ballot with Trump again in 2020,” POLITICO had reported.