Paul Ryan Reports Trump “Hangover”

( Paul Ryan, the former Republican speaker of the House, commented this week on the outcome of the midterm elections, saying the fact that Republicans didn’t perform as well as expected is a direct result of people experiencing what he called a “Trump hangover.”

While it’s possible for the GOP to still end up with control of both chambers of Congress when all the election dust settles, they certainly didn’t get the red wave that many were predicting before the midterms.

Speaking with WISN 12 New on Wednesday, Ryan said that former President Donald Trump is no longer helping Republicans. Instead, he’s dragging down some of the party’s top candidates and causing many political problems for the GOP.

He further said the Republican Party must do “a lot of soul searching” to find out why the red wave they were predicting never came to fruition. Most people had expected a huge run of support for the GOP because of how poor the economy is performing and how poorly people look at the tenure of President Joe Biden.

Ryan called the entire situation a “Trump hangover,” adding that the fact that Trump has a continued prominence in the national political arena is doing damage to many Republican candidates. As he explained to his local news station:

“I think Trump’s kind of a drag on our ticket. I think Donald Trump gives us problems politically. We lost the House, the Senate and the White House in two years when Trump was on the ballot, or in office. I think we just have some Trump hangover. I think he’s a drag on our office, on our races.”

But, Ryan didn’t stop there. Not only does he think that Trump is having a negative effect on other political candidates in the GOP; he thinks that Trump won’t win the GOP nomination for president in 2024, because too many Republicans believe that there’s no way he could win a general election against the Democratic candidate.

As Ryan said of Trump:

“I assume he’s going to announce, but I honestly don’t think he’ll get the nomination at the end of the day. We want to win. We want to win the White House, and we know with Trump, we’re so much more likely to lose. Just look at the difference between votes, between Trump candidates and non-Trump-aligned candidates.

“It’s really clear to me, and the evidence is pretty stark, that if we have a nominee not named Trump, we’re so much more likely to win the White House than if our candidate’s named Trump.”

Obviously, Trump supporters and allies don’t believe any of that is true. They believe that when members of the Republican establishment attack the former president, it only makes him stronger and more influential among his base.

The challenge for Trump, though, is attracting support from beyond that base. He was able to do that in 2016, but failed at doing so in 2020. Whether he’s able to even win the GOP nomination in 2024 may come down to that one simple question.