Trump called Ryan about reports he will step down: White House
President Trump called Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) on Tuesday to address reports he plans to leave Congress after 2018, which the Speaker assured him were inaccurate, according to the White House.
“The president did speak to the Speaker not too long ago and made sure that the Speaker knew very clearly … that if that news was true he was very unhappy with it,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said at her daily briefing.
Sanders told reporters that Ryan “assured the president that those were not accurate reports and that they look forward to working together for a long time.”
Ryan also denied the reports publicly on Thursday.
Politico reported that the Wisconsin Republican is eyeing an exit after the 2018 midterm elections. The Huffington Post published a similar report Wednesday evening.
Rumors have been swirling on Capitol Hill that Ryan could step down after passing his top legislative priority, tax reform.
There has also been speculation Ryan is exhausted by the chaotic environment in Washington brought on by Trump’s inauguration, but the White House sought to dismiss that notion by disclosing the phone call.
“It sounds like it may have caught Speaker Ryan by surprise, because I don’t think it was very accurate reporting,” Sanders said. “It sounds like they’re both committed to — and looking forward to — spending a lot more time together over the next, hopefully, seven or eight years.”
Lisa Hagen contributed.
This story was last updated at 2:37 p.m.