When one of the most successful people to have previously served in your position speaks out, you might do well to listen.

That could be a lesson for Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) who got an earful from Newt Gingrich on Fox’s Sean Hannity program on Thursday after announcing he was “just not ready” to endorse Donald Trump as the presumptive nominee of the Republican party.

“In the case of Paul Ryan, he made a big mistake today and he needs to understand this,” Gingrich said.

Gingrich was the leader of the “Contract with America” revolution that swept into Congress in 1994, President Bill Clinton’s first mid-term election, that resulted in a gain of 54 House and 9 Senate seats for the Republicans, moving Clinton to his so-called “tri-angulation,” and setting the stage for an eight-year George W. Bush administration.

“He is the Speaker of the House. He has an obligation to unify the party. I much prefer what Mitch McConnell did, what John McCain did –they both said, ‘OK game’s over, we have a nominee. I’m for him,’” Gingrich said.

Ryan was former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney’s running mate in the unsuccessful campaign to block President Obama from winning a second term in 2012.

When he was touted as the successor to Speaker Rep. John Boehner, Ryan adamantly refused, saying, “While grateful for the encouragement I've received, I will not be a candidate,” only to reconsider the next day.

“I never thought I'd be speaker. But I pledged to you that if I could be a unifying figure, then I would serve -- I would go all in. I believe we are ready to move forward as one, united team.”

Ryan may perform just such a flip-flop with regard to a Trump endorsement, especially if he heeds the warning of former Speaker Gingrich, if only to see himself as the party’s “unifying figure.”

“Our constitution provides that speakers and presidents can fight, but I think he sends the wrong signal and a signal which I think endangers the House Republicans and endangers the Senate Republicans.”


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