Like Nailing Jell-O To A Wall

By: Meredith Kelly


He may not want us to notice, but leading Trump endorser Paul Ryan had a pretty rough day at the office yesterday. Once again, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump displayed stunning ignorance in offering his views on stop-and-frisk policies—and, once again, the Speaker seemed at a loss when confronted about it by the press:


Question: “Trump has said on terror issues that he wanted to increase profiling…things like widespread use of stop and frisk tactics. Is that something that you support?”

Ryan: “You know, I don’t have, I’ve…haven’t given enough thought to it…”

Question: “I’m just going to follow up…because stop and frisk was ruled unconstitutional. You want to do criminal justice reform, you’ve talked about that.”

Ryan: “I just haven’t…I’m not a judiciary guy…I can’t speak to that.”

Question: “But the GOP Nominee is pushing that as his law enforcement strategy. Is that something you agree with?”

Ryan: “I don’t have an answer for you.”


A couple red flags. Not only did the self-proclaimed “policy guy” seem strangely clueless about a high-profile policy issue, he once again displayed his talent for squirming and dodging when questioned on the antics of his party’s nominee for president. Getting a straight answer from Ryan about Trump is about as easy as nailing Jell-O to a wall.

Unfortunately, this is a pattern we’ve seen time and again at his weekly news conferences:


“Mr. Speaker, your thoughts on the proposal from Donald Trump’s proposal this week for six weeks of paid mandatory leave, is that something that would get any love up here?”

Ryan: “I confess I haven’t had a chance to look at it.”



Question: “Do you think it’s a good idea for Donald Trump to release his [Tax Returns]?”

Ryan: “I’ll defer to Donald Trump as to when he thinks the appropriate time to release his returns.”



Question: “Are you concerned though of Donald Trump praising Vladimir Putin?”

Ryan: “I made my clear — my points about Putin clear right there. I’ll just leave it at that.”



Question: “Donald Trump said that generals have been reduced to rubble, he said the military’s an embarrassment and…he praised Vladimir Putin and said that he’s a better leader than the President of the United States. Do you still think that Hillary Clinton is the worst thing that can happen?”

Ryan: “You think I’m going to stand up here and be an election pundit?”



Question: “Mr. Speaker, next week you’re speaking at the Republican National Convention, I know you want to talk about House Republican ideas there. But will you also make an affirmative case [at the convention] for Donald Trump to be President?”

Ryan: “I haven’t even — I haven’t even thought about my speech, yet.”



Question: “So Donald Trump is now standing by the tweet that deleted about about the Star of David image and he says that…”

Ryan: “I’m not going to comment on it.”



Question: “Do you trust Donald Trump—?”

Ryan: “I — I don’t — I don’t answer people shouting out questions.”


It’s like he’s playing press conference dodgeball. Rather than give clear answers about Trump, Mr. Speaker ducks and dodges. As other prominent Republicans have shown this week, it’s not impossible to take a stand against Trump’s dangerous candidacy. Speaker Ryan can attempt to dodge, duck, dip, dive, and dodge, but the bottom line is this: Ryan believes Trump is best qualified to be commander-in-chief and has made clear his choice to place party loyalty over what’s best for this country.