Ryan: I hope Trump campaign 'improves its tone'

Moments after endorsing Donald TrumpDonald TrumpJudge rules Alaska governor unlawfully fired lawyer who criticized Trump Giuliani led fake electors plot: CNN Giuliani associate sentenced to a year in prison in campaign finance case MORE for president, Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanHow Kevin McCarthy sold his soul to Donald Trump On The Trail: Retirements offer window into House Democratic mood Stopping the next insurrection MORE (R-Wis.) said that he hopes Trump's campaign “improves its tone” as the general election approaches.

Under pressure from fellow Republicans, Ryan issued a long-awaited endorsement in an article for his hometown newspaper in Wisconsin, The Gazette, after repeatedly saying he needed more time to decide his stance on Trump.


In an interview with The Associated Press shortly after the Gazette published the article, Ryan said he wanted to ensure Republicans would be united going into the fall, but expressed some concern about Trump's candidacy.

He said he needed a certain “comfort level” before endorsing Trump, whom he has rebuked on multiple occasions over the last year. 

“It is my hope the campaign improves its tone as we go forward and it's all a campaign we can be proud of,” he told the AP.

Ryan said he needed time to talk to Trump personally to be assured the presumptive Republican presidential nominee would fall in line with the House GOP agenda.

At various points in the campaign, Ryan has condemned Trump for proposing to ban Muslims from entering the U.S., declining to disavow support from a Ku Klux Klan leader and doing little to rein in violence at campaign rallies.

House Republicans plan to release a formal six-part policy platform over the course of June to lay out an agenda to campaign on this fall.

Rather than saying he was reassured by Trump’s policy proposals, Ryan said he felt ready to endorse because he felt the billionaire businessman would align with congressional Republicans’ preferences.

"I just wanted to have a good comfort level that these principles and policies were something we would be able to work with him on. And it took some time just to have those conversations,” Ryan told the AP.

Trump has continued to lash out at fellow Republicans who have not offered him support. Last week, he attacked New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez, the nation’s first female Hispanic governor and chairwoman of the Republican Governors Association. 

Trump also last week called Mitt Romney, the 2012 GOP nominee, a “choker” who “walks like a penguin.”

Ryan's aides said the Speaker last spoke with Trump by phone last week. Ryan told the AP that Trump didn't offer any conditions for the endorsement.

"This isn't a deal," Ryan said. 

Ryan is the last top GOP leader in Congress to fall in line behind Trump's candidacy. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellThese Senate seats are up for election in 2022 WATCH: The Hill recaps the top stories of the week Effort to overhaul archaic election law wins new momentum MORE (R-Ky.), as well as the rest of the House GOP leadership team, have all already endorsed Trump.