Ryan ends speculation about a White House run

Despite the efforts of some Republicans who have been urging U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) to toss his hat in the ring, the conservative congressman said Monday he has ruled out running for president in 2012:

“I sincerely appreciate the support from those eager to chart a brighter future for the next generation. While humbled by the encouragement, I have not changed my mind, and therefore I am not seeking our party’s nomination for President,” Ryan said in a statement.

It’s not the first time this year Ryan has said no to a White House bid. But speculation about a Ryan candidacy has persisted, and according to some media reports, Ryan was taking a second look at the race in recent weeks.

The House budget chairman from Janesville has been urged to jump into the race by some GOP insiders dissatisfied with the current field, which is led by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and US Rep. Michele Bachmann from Minnesota. Ryan’s fans within the party see him as a skilled, swing-state politician who can make the party’s best case for attacking the federal debt and overhauling entitlement programs. At the same time, some Democrats have argued that the Medicare changes he’s proposing would be a huge liability for a GOP ticket.

Ryan’s decision follows two months of renewed media speculation that he was considering a presidential run, and it is final.

- JP

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