Ryan: Trump's Taiwan call 'much ado about nothing'

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanVulnerable Republicans include several up-and-coming GOP leaders Trump ally suspends reelection campaign Congress should prohibit members from serving on company boards MORE (R-Wis.) on Tuesday dismissed criticism of President-elect Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpAl Gore: Trump has had 'less of an impact on environment so far than I feared' Trump claims tapes of him saying the 'n-word' don't exist Trump wanted to require staffers to get permission before writing books: report MORE's phone call with Taiwan's leader.

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"It is prudent for the president-elect to take congratulatory calls," Ryan said Tuesday.

"I think there's a lot of much ado about nothing about this and I think for him to not take a congratulatory call would in of itself be considered a snub. So I think everything's fine."

In speaking with President Tsai Ing-wen last week, Trump became the first president or president-elect since Jimmy Carter to have a conversation with Taiwan's leader.

Carter broke off diplomatic relations with Taiwan in 1979, when the United States formally recognized the communist People's Republic of China as the sole government of China. 

U.S. presidents in both parties, from Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush to Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonMcAuliffe: We should look at impeaching Trump over Putin summit What ISIS is up to during your summer vacation Kavanaugh once said president would likely have to testify before grand jury if subpoenaed: report MORE and Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaFalwell Jr.: Sessions and Rosenstein ‘deceived’ Trump into appointing them and should ‘rot’ in jail The Trump economy is destroying the Obama coalition Charlottesville and the failure of moral leadership MORE, have abided by that policy, though the U.S. continues to sell arms to Taiwan. 

The Washington Post reported Monday the call between Trump and Taiwan's leader had been long planned. 

The Wall Street Journal reported Monday that former Sen. Bob Dole helped set up the call, and a new Tuesday report from BuzzFeed reveals Dole's law firm was paid $20,000 a month to advance Taiwan's interests in Washington D.C. 

Top aides to the president-elect have attempted to downplay the conversation.
 
Some conservatives, such as former Speaker Newt Gingrich, praised Trump for holding the discussion with Tsai, whom they noted represents a democratically elected government.
 
Top Trump aide Kellyanne Conway on Sunday dismissed the conversation as "just a phone call" and urged people not to read too much into it.