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There’s About to Be a New Speaker of the House — And His Name Is Paul Ryan

Republicans in the US House of Representatives nominated the Wisconsin representative for the job, and a vote to make the move official is expected on Thursday.
Photo by Andrew Harnik/AP

Republicans in the US House of Representatives nominated Paul Ryan as speaker of the House on Wednesday, putting an end to weeks of disarray in the party and uniting a number of conservative factions behind the Wisconsin representative. A vote to make the move official is expected on Thursday.

In a closed-door session, Republicans chose the 45-year-old Ryan for the speakership over Daniel Webster, a former speaker of the Florida statehouse.


Ryan said he would unite the Republican party, and he has promised to be more open about the way the House is run under his watch.

House Republicans have desperately been looking for someone to fill the top leadership position since John Boehner announced plans to step down last month. Much of the disarray has come from the Freedom Caucus, a powerful faction of 38 hardline conservatives, which worked to oust Boehner and endorsed California Representative Kevin McCarthy to take his place.

Related: Some Conservatives Are Not Impressed by Boehner's Sweet Budget Deal Swan Song

McCarthy abruptly withdrew his candidacy for the position about two weeks ago after the Freedom Caucus turned on him. It soon became clear that no one else, including Ryan, wanted the job.

But over the past months, Republicans have pleaded for Ryan to take the job, with many in the GOP saying he is the best — and perhaps last — chance to achieve solidarity in the party. Last week Ryan received a supermajority of support from the Freedom Caucus, whose support he said was essential before he agreed to take the job.

In 2012, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney picked Ryan as his vice presidential nominee. Ryan is currently the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.

Follow Olivia Becker on Twitter: @obecker928