Ryan rebukes Obama on Brexit

Ryan rebukes Obama on Brexit
© Getty Images

House Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanMcCarthy faces pushback from anxious Republicans over interview comments Pelosi and Trump go a full year without speaking Jordan vows to back McCarthy as leader even if House loses more GOP seats MORE (R-Wis.) on Thursday called out President Obama for weighing in on the United Kingdom's vote to stay in or leave the European Union.

Ryan joined several Republican lawmakers by refusing to state a preference as British voters head to polls, while Obama has urged the nation to stay in the EU.


“I’m going to do exactly what the president did not do and not weigh in on this, and send the signal to our great friends and allies in Britain that we stand with them regardless of what decision they make," Ryan told reporters.

Obama in April said he wanted the U.K. to remain in the EU and warned that Britain would fall "to the back of queue" for negotiating trade deals in the U.S.

Republican lawmakers have panned his comments in the days leading up to the vote, insisting through letters and speeches that the White House stay out of the issue.

Federal Reserve Board Chairwoman Janet Yellen warned lawmakers Tuesday that a Brexit, or British exit, could have dire implications on the global economy.

Ryan dismissed those concerns and pledged to support Britain no matter what.

“I’m not fearful. I’m not going to weigh in on it, and they are an indispensable ally of ours regardless of what the outcome of this vote is," Ryan said.

Polls close in Britain at 5 p.m. Eastern, though a decision might not be known for several hours afterward. Recent polling shows the vote is too close to call.