Gutless: Why “Policy Guy” Paul Ryan Skimps On The Details That Matter

By: Meredith Kelly


Speaker Paul Ryan, a very “weak and ineffective leader,” recently joined Jake Tapper on State of the Union to discuss the long policy to-do list he’s concocted for next year. After vigorously defending victims of hate crimes America’s pluralism under the Trump Administration, defending gutting Medicaid expansions A Better Way” for healthcare, and defending Trump’s plans for deporting millions of Americans immigration reform, he suddenly stopped cold when asked about some obscure, “nitty gritty” policy proposal called “birth control” (maybe you’ve heard of it?).

TAPPER: Obamacare also provides birth control to women at no cost. Is that going to end or will that remain?

RYAN: Look, I’m not going to get into all the nitty-gritty details of these things.

TAPPER: With all due respect, I don’t know that the average woman of child-bearing years out there who relies upon contraception provided by health insurance mandated by the Affordable Care Act, I don’t know that she would think that that’s just a nitty-gritty detail. That’s…

RYAN: You’re asking me detail…

TAPPER: Well, what do you think? Is it important to you?

RYAN: Jake, you’re asking me details about legislation — you’re asking me details about legislation that hasn’t been written yet.

Contraceptive healthcare coverage is a “nitty gritty” detail? As Tapper noted, Ryan’s choice of dodge – belittling the critical importance of contraceptive care – is ridiculous, but it’s par for the course for Ryan, who consistently embarrasses himself by failing to treat serious questions with directness and clarity they deserve.

A year into his Speakership, we can make one solid conclusion about Paul Ryan: after failing to pass a budget, after a year of being afraid to ruffle the feathers of the most radical elements of his party, after trying to pander to everyone by having it both ways on Trump’s candidacy – and now, after giving Jake Tapper this joke of an answer about some “nitty gritties,” it is pretty clear Paul Ryan is nothing more than a craven politician out for his own gain. Ask him one question with the smallest trace of controversy – as all things regarding Trump and the election made clear – and Ryan’s composure comes crashing down like a sad game of Jenga. Paul Ryan cannot possibly bear giving you an answer that he thinks is unpopular (to say nothing of harmful for millions of women). Instead, Paul “Policy Guy” Ryan would rather not get into the details with you, thankyouverymuch.