House Speaker Paul Ryan cruised to reelection, according to the Associated Press, easily defeating Democrat Ryan Solen despite facing outspoken criticism from GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump.
Ryan’s initial refusal to endorse Trump, which morphed into lackluster support this summer and a refusal to comment on or reference the GOP nominee for much of the fall, incensed many conservatives and sparked a number of angry tweets from Trump himself.
But Ryan handily dispatched a primary challenger that tried to seize on the tension between Trump and Paul to fuel his candidacy, and ran a relatively uneventful general election campaign.
Ryan wins one election just to head into another that could become contentious, again due to Trump’s influence. Conservatives in the House have been rumbling for weeks about fielding a possible challenge to his speakership.
They’re frustrated with what they see as his inability to win concessions on spending and other conservative priorities, and with his handling of the GOP nominee.
Such a challenge has long odds, however — Ryan has worked assiduously to cement his support by campaigning for vulnerable incumbents and breaking fundraising records for House Republicans.