NEWS BRIEF Days before his primary election, House Speaker Paul Ryan is keeping Donald Trump at arms length.
“He’s had a pretty strange run since the convention,” Ryan said in a radio interview on Thursday. “You would think that we want to be focusing on Hillary Clinton, on all of her deficiencies. She is such a weak candidate that one would think that we would be on offense against Hillary Clinton, and it is distressing that that’s not what we’re talking about these days.”
Ryan was perhaps alluding to a series of controversies that have rocked the Republican nominee’s campaign recently—like Trump’s reckless remarks about Khizr and Ghazala Khan, who lost their son in combat in 2004, and Trump’s decision not to endorse Ryan. Altogether, it’s made for a turbulent few days for the House speaker ahead of his primary election in Wisconsin next week.
In an interview with The Washington Post on Tuesday, Trump, who Ryan backed in June, refused to return the favor: “I like Paul, but these are horrible times for our country. We need very strong leadership. We need very, very strong leadership. And I’m just not quite there yet. I’m not quite there yet,” he said. Zack Roday, a Ryan campaign spokesman, said that the campaign had not asked for Trump’s endorsement and was “confident in a victory next week regardless.”