Just a few weeks shy of the Nov. 8 presidential election, House Speaker Paul Ryan made a stop in Madison to address a group of College Republicans, making no mention of the Republican presidential nominee Friday.
Instead, Ryan warned of “liberal progressivism,” or what a Hillary Clinton presidency would look like, to a group of about 100 students gathered at the Madison Masonic Center Foundation a few blocks off the University of Wisconsin campus.
“Liberal progressivism needs no introduction right here in Madison,” Ryan said, eliciting laughter from the crowd of UW College Republicans.
Ryan’s speech called on Republicans to show up and vote this election to ensure that, if Clinton is elected president, Democrats don’t gain control of the House and Senate as well.
He specifically hammered home his intentions to leverage Congress to fix the U.S. tax code system, restore the military budget, and address the welfare system and poverty.
Ryan said re-electing Wisconsin U.S. Sen Ron Johnson is crucial in this election, as it has the potential to impact whether or not Republicans hold the Senate.
“Do you know who becomes chair of the Senate Budget Committee if Hillary Clinton wins?” Ryan asked. “Someone you may have heard of: Bernie Sanders.”
After his brief speech, he answered questions submitted by students and chosen ahead of time.
Vicki McKenna, conservative on-air host of WIBA Madison/WISN Milwaukee, served as moderator.
In response to multiple questions about how the College Republicans could better convey why they choose to support the Republican party to other students, Ryan told them to focus on the values and ideas of the party.
Ryan emphasized the race shouldn’t be a “bizarre personality contest,” and people should be talking about what they believe rather than the latest Twitter storm.
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Ryan encouraged students to take the crucial principles of freedom and liberty and find a way to make those messages contemporary.
One example, he said, is the ability for businesses to personalize approaches, which he said Obama’s “one-size-fits-all approach” to health care does not take into account.
“We want an America that values disruption and innovation,” Ryan said.