Former Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan said former Republican President Donald Trump should not run in 2024 because he is "more likely to lose the White House than anyone else."
Ryan made the remark during a YouTube-posted interview with Teneo, a CEO advisory firm on whose board he serves as vice-chair.
He suggested that Republicans would not be likely to select Trump as the GOP nominee because he is so polarizing, which would ultimately turn Republicans against him despite his attempts to intimidate them.
Ryan's observations are his most striking criticism of the former President yet, coming as Trump continues to face significant legal troubles in regard to the ongoing investigation into his theft of classified documents and for his participation in the January 6 insurrection.
You can hear what Ryan said in the video below.
When asked about Trump's chances in 2024, Ryan said:
“I think Trump’s unelectability will be palpable by then. We all know that he will lose."
"We all know that he is so much more likely to lose the White House than anybody else running for president on our side of the aisle, so why would we want to go with that?”
“The only reason he stays where he is is because everybody’s afraid of him. They’re afraid of him going after them, hurting their own ambition."
"But as soon as you sort of get the herd mentality going, it’s unstoppable.”
“Whether he runs or not, I don’t really know if it matters. He’s not going to be the nominee, I don’t think.”
Trump has still not explicitly confirmed whether or not he will run in 2024 though he has regularly hinted he would announce a presidential run after next month's midterm elections, which will determine if Democrats manage to retain control of both chambers of the legislature.
Trump's advisers have previously instructed him to wait before he makes an official announcement confirming his candidacy.
According to a Washington Post report, which cited individuals familiar with the discussions, advisers who had told the impatient Trump he has to wait before making an announcement were nervous that an early announcement would mobilize Democrats and increase voter turnout.
But the suggestion that he might potentially not be the GOP nominee is a telling one, particularly as federal authorities ramp up their investigations into his alleged criminality.
In fact, over the summer, Fox News personality Laura Ingraham surprised listeners when she said that the country might be ready to "turn the page" on Trump, a sign that ongoing investigations could be exhausting—and perhaps even repelling—Republicans who would otherwise vote for him.
Ryan's observations have received a mixed response.
Ryan bears at least some responsibility for Trump's ascendancy.
While Ryan was often critical of Trump, he regularly partnered with him on Republican legislative priorities—particularly a much derided overhaul of the tax code that drastically cut taxes for the wealthy—and publicly endorsed him in both 2016 and 2020.
Ryan's relationship with Trump caused him to fall out of favor among Democrats and Republicans alike and the once promising GOP star, who was named as the party's vice presidential nominee in 2012, quit Congress in 2019. Since then, he has maintained a relatively low profile and currently sits on the board of the Fox Corporation, receiving an annual salary of roughly $350,000.
Over the summer, Ryan criticized Trump for inciting the January 6 insurrection, saying that watching the attack unfold in the building "I spent my whole adult life in" had "really disturbed me, foundationally.”