Paul Ryan Takes Thankless Job: House Elects Him Speaker

  • by: Alan Duke

Paul Ryan was chosen to be the 62nd speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, a post he reluctantly accepted considering the challenges of corralling the divided GOP caucus into action.

Ryan must give up his cherished chairmanship of the powerful House Ways and Means committee, a position the budget wonk considered to be the job of a lifetime.

He replaces John Boehner, whose sudden departure was pushed by the members of the so-called Freedom Caucus, a minority group of Republican congressmen who argued Boehner was too quick to compromise with Democrats and President Obama to avoid government shutdowns and other impasses.

"I leave with no regrets or burdens," Boehner, who is prone to emotion, said in a farewell speech just before Ryan was elected in a 236 to 11 vote by the GOP. Rep. Daniel Webster of Florida got 9 votes, while Rep Jim Cooper or Tennessee and former Secretary of State Colin Powell each received one vote.

"Real change takes time," Boehner warned in is last address to the house. "Yes, freedom makes all things possible, but patience is what makes all things real. So believe in the long, slow struggle."

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  Alan Duke

Editor-in-Chief Alan Duke co-founded Lead Stories after ending a 26-year career with CNN, where he mainly covered entertainment, current affairs and politics. Duke closely covered domestic terrorism cases for CNN, including the Oklahoma City federal building bombing, the UNABOMBER and search for Southeast bomber Eric Robert Rudolph. CNN moved Duke to Los Angeles in 2009 to cover the entertainment beat. Duke also co-hosted a daily podcast with former HLN host Nancy Grace, "Crime Stories with Nancy Grace" and hosted the podcast series "Stan Lee's World: His Real Life Battle with Heroes & Villains." You'll also see Duke in many news documentaries, including on the Reelz channel, CNN and HLN.

Read more about or contact Alan Duke

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