— Fox News (@FoxNews) March 14, 2017
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) dismissed the audio that leaked Monday showing him vowing to not defend then-GOP nominee Donald Trump, calling his words “ancient history.”
“I got really thick-skinned, Martha. That is ancient history, back then, when that video came out,” Ryan told Fox News host Martha MacCallum.
“Look, it is no secret that Donald and I, the president and I, had our ups and down during the campaign. But we merged forces at the end of the campaign…And since then, we have been working hand and glove together,” Ryan continued.
Breitbart released the sound of Ryan Tuesday, revealing that Ryan claimed he would not “try to defend” Trump after the “Access Hollywood” video surfaced in early October.
Ryan did not directly address whether the leaked audio is an attempt to hurt his health care plan, which Breitbart and conservatives have panned.
“I don’t even really give it much thought. It is just not part of my day job to worry about things like that, so, I don’t worry about it,” Ryan said.
Ryan can be heard in the audio telling fellow Republicans to do what’s best for their campaigns in terms of reacting to the “Access Hollywood” tape, which showed Trump talking obscenely about women.
“His comments are not anywhere in keeping with our party’s principles and values…I am not going to defend Donald Trump — not now, not in the future,” Ryan said in the leaked tape.
“As you probably heard, I disinvited him from my first congressional district GOP event this weekend—a thing I do every year. And I’m not going to be campaigning with him over the next 30 days,” Ryan said.
“You guys know I have real concerns about our nominee, I hope you appreciate that I’m doing what I think is best for you, the members, not what’s best for me. So, I want to do what’s best for our members, and I think this is the right thing to do.”