As first reported by Jonathan Swan and Mike Allen of Axios, United States Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, who represents southeastern Wisconsin, will not seek re-election.
Axios and other outlets site multiple sources saying Ryan has told close confidants that he will retire from Congress when his term expires next year. He will formally tell his staff at 8:45 eastern time this morning and inform his colleagues at a Republican conference at 9 am, the sources said.
The announcement opens an opportunity for the Democrats to flip the seat as Ryan faced an unexpectedly stiff challenge from iron worker Randy Bryce, whose working-class message has garnered national attention and donations.
Ryan’s decision has been the subject of rumors for months. Sources have said that after passing a massive tax overhaul bill, Ryan had accomplished what he wanted and was ready to leave a job that had become increasingly difficult and frustrating, in part because of the way President Donald Trump is running his administration.
Insiders say California Representative Kevin McCarthy is the favorite to replace Ryan as Speaker.