Ballot Box

Boehner pushes Ryan as nominee on 2nd ballot

Former Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is fanning talk of his successor, Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), emerging as the Republican nominee at the party’s convention this summer.

Speaking at a conference in Boca Raton, Fla., on Wednesday, Boehner reportedly said that at the GOP convention in July “anybody can be nominated.”
{mosads}“If we don’t have a nominee who can win on the first ballot, I’m for none of the above,” Boehner said, according to Politico. “They all had a chance to win. None of them won. So I’m for none of the above. I’m for Paul Ryan to be our nominee.”
Ryan spokeswoman AshLee Strong responded to the statement in an email, saying, “The speaker is grateful for the support, but he is not interested. He will not accept a nomination and believes our nominee should be someone who ran this year.”
The remarks from the former Speaker come days after Boehner, who retired last fall, endorsed fellow Ohioan John Kasich in the Republican race ahead of voting in the Buckeye State on Tuesday, calling the Ohio governor his friend.
Kasich won his home state on Tuesday night, complicating the delegate math for presidential front-runner Donald Trump.
A spokesman clarified that Boehner stood by his endorsement of Kasich, and emphasized his remarks were centered on the possibility of a multiballot convention taking place.
“He has endorsed Governor John Kasich. His off-the-cuff comments this morning were about a hypothetical scenario in which none of the current candidates are able to secure the nomination at the convention,” Boehner spokesman David Schnittger said in an email to The Hill.
Ryan has long shied away from fielding questions about the potential that his name could emerge as an alternate candidate to Trump at the convention, noting he must remain neutral to preside over the event as chairman.
“People say, ‘What about the contested convention?’ I say, well, there are a lot of people running for president. We’ll see. Who knows,” Ryan told CNBC’s John Harwood for a story published Tuesday night as results rolled in.

“I actually think you should run for president if you’re going to be president, if you want to be president,” he said. “I’m not running for president. I made that decision, consciously, not to.”


A leadership source said that a Boehner endorsement “might help him win the D.C. delegates, but he probably already had those locked up already.”


Trump has pushed back fiercely at the possibility that he might be denied the nomination despite likely having the most delegates entering the convention. 

The outspoken billionaire predicted earlier Wednesday that there would be “riots” if he’s not the nominee, saying, “I wouldn’t lead it, but I think bad things would happen.”

—This report was updated at 10:39 a.m.

Tags 2016 GOP primary 2016 presidential election Boehner contested convention Donald Trump John Boehner Paul Ryan

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