Speaker Paul Ryan (R–Wisc.) has not had a good couple of weeks. Because of his rejection of Donald Trump, it seems as if most of the Republican Party is in an all-out rebellion against its highest-ranking figure in the federal government. Furthermore, Mr. Trump seems bent on destroying the Speaker’s reputation, as the Republican nominee has launched a massive attack on Mr. Ryan’s character, ability to govern and competence.
Personally, I find these attacks to be disgusting — and I think it would be helpful to address each of the attacks on the Speaker.
First, the pure hatred that Mr. Ryan has received in the wake of his rebuke of Trump is, quite frankly, unbelievable. Donald Trump literally stated that because he was a celebrity, he had the right to grope women — which, by all normal standards of basic human decency, is otherwise known as sexual assault. For those who wish to stand up and defend Trump’s comments as “locker room talk,” please stop. You sound ridiculous — and if that is how you talk in a locker room, then I would suggest that you simply stop talking.
Donald Trump’s comments are beyond disturbing. There is no question that we face a growing plague of sexual assault within this nation — and any candidate that is willing to brag about his perceived prerogative to engage in the degradation of women deserves to be publically rebuked. For this reason, Paul Ryan was right to denounce Donald Trump.
Yet I would like those who decry Paul Ryan to ask themselves a simple question: What if Donald Trump was referring to your daughter, sister or mother in that video? How could you possibly defend that? I am more than confident that Speaker Ryan would be unable to look his daughter in the face while defending a man that thinks it would be socially acceptable to grope her.
Some have made the claim that Speaker Ryan’s comments are helping to elect Hillary Clinton. Well, I have some bad news for you: Hillary Clinton won this election the day Donald Trump won the Republican Nomination. Today, Mrs. Clinton holds a seven point lead in the polls, in August she maintained a seven point lead, and in April she held an eight point lead. There is no way that Mr. Trump — the same man that denigrated Megyn Kelly, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Carly Fiorina, Rosy O’Donnell, Mexicans, immigrants, Muslims, Gov. Susana Martinez (R-N.M.) and a Latino judge — is going to defeat Mrs. Clinton. Paul Ryan will not elect Hillary Clinton — Donald Trump will.
Furthermore, in the wake of Ryan’s conflict with Trump, many have resorted to declaring that Paul Ryan is not a “true Republican,” that he is a RINO (Republican In Name Only). First, and foremost, the American Conservative Union has ranked Mr. Ryan as one of the most consistently conservative Representatives in the history of the United States Congress. So, quite frankly, that argument makes no sense. Furthermore, I’d like these critics to take a look at the record of Donald Trump — a man that has supported single-payer health care, called for some of the strictest gun control measures in American history, supported protectionist trade policies, argued for higher taxes and demanded more industrial and financial regulations. When looking at that record, I find Paul Ryan’s RINO label to be the height of deranged, foolish hypocrisy.
Yet what is perhaps most disturbing about Mr. Ryan’s public rebuke is the fact that he is truly the future of the Republican Party. Mr. Trump’s isolationist, anti-immigrant, anti-women, pro-Russia, protectionist policies are absurd and unelectable. No Republican will ever carry the White House with Donald Trump’s ridiculous platform. However, Paul Ryan presents a new and logical path forward for the Republican Party.
In an attempt to directly heal the scars of poverty on this nation, the Speaker has put forward a comprehensive plan to tackle the issue. By reducing regulations, expanding access to quality education, and increasing work programs, Paul Ryan has provided a platform on poverty that will make a difference in the lives of millions of Americans and is politically feasible.
Furthermore, Mr. Ryan has proposed a set of well-reasoned economic policies that will help to gear our nation towards the 21st century. By restricting the tax code, reducing illogical and burdensome regulations, and curbing federal spending, Mr. Ryan has put forward a plan that will help to build the American economy. This proposal is grounded in solid conservative principles and considers the complications America will face in the 21st century.
Put simply, Paul Ryan is right. He is right to denounce Donald Trump (though I would like for him to finally renounce his endorsement), he is right to stop defending Trump and he is right on matters of policy. Paul Ryan, and not the lunacy of Donald Trump, will be the future of the Republican Party — and it will be Mr. Ryan’s job to pick up the pieces of our party in the wake of what will be a historic loss.
Michael Glanzel is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Cornell Shrugged appears alternate Thursdays this semester.