POLITICS
03/26/2017 09:48 am ET Updated Mar 26, 2017

Donald Trump Continues To Back Paul Ryan Despite Conspicuous Tweet, His Chief Of Staff Says

The president just wanted to help promote Judge Jeanine, apparently.

President Donald Trump does not want House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) to step down, White House chief of staff Reince Priebus said Sunday.

The president tweeted on Saturday that people should watch cable news show “Justice With Judge Jeanine.” When the show began a few hours later, host Jeanine Pirro unequivocally stated: “Paul Ryan needs to step down as speaker of the House.”

This was strictly “coincidental,” Priebus said during an appearance on “Fox News Sunday.”

When Chris Wallace pressed him on the issue, Priebus insisted that Pirro was merely a friend who the president wanted to help promote. Asked plainly if Trump wanted Ryan to step down following the failure of the party to pass a repeal-and-replace bill for Obamacare, Priebus replied: “No, he doesn’t.”

Trump and Ryan spoke for an hour on Saturday, according to CNN.

Even if Trump privately harbors anger for Ryan, that doesn’t change the speaker’s hold on his post. Although Ryan emerged damaged from the health care fight, his job remains relatively secure if only because it’s unclear who would or could replace him. One name often floated ― Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), head of the conservative House Freedom Caucus ― told ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday that “there are no conversations going on to replacing the speaker.”

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