POLITICS
01/12/2015 04:28 pm ET Updated Jan 13, 2015

Paul Ryan Won't Run For President In 2016

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) will not run for president in 2016, NBC News reports.

"I have decided that I am not going to run for president in 2016," Ryan told NBC, saying he made his decision "weeks ago."

"It is amazing the amount of encouragement I have gotten from people - from friends and supporters - but I feel like I am in a position to make a big difference where I am and I want to do that," Ryan said.

Ryan ran for vice president in 2012, sharing the GOP ticket with Mitt Romney. The news of Ryan's 2016 decision came as Romney began taking steps toward a potential 2016 run.

The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that Romney had told donors he's actively weighing another run for president. On Monday, the Washington Post reported Romney is moving to reassemble a network of aides, donors and other supporters in hopes of launching another White House bid.

In September, Ryan said he would not attempt a presidential run if Romney were to try again.

"I wouldn't if he were. I would support Mitt. If he were to run, I would not," Ryan told HuffPost Live.

Ryan told NBC "it is no secret that I have always thought Mitt would make a great president," but he doesn't know what Romney's plans are for 2016. Ryan did say he thinks there are "a number of very capable candidates who have every ability to become president" in the Republican party.

Ryan told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel he's happy in Congress for now, saying his role as chair of the House Ways and Means Committee dominates a lot of his time.

“It’s a big job and it deserves my undivided attention,” Ryan said.

Ryan released a statement on his decision Monday:

After giving it a lot of thought, I’ve decided not to run for president. Our work at the House Ways and Means Committee over the next few years will be crucial to moving America forward, and my job as Chairman deserves undivided attention.

It’s clear our country needs a change in direction. And our party has a responsibility to offer a real alternative. So I’m going to do what I can to lay out conservative solutions and to help our nominee lead us to victory.

I want to thank everyone who encouraged me to run. Their words and continued support have been deeply humbling. And most of all I want to thank the people of Wisconsin for giving me the opportunity to serve our country.

This post has been updated with Ryan's statement.

HuffPost

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