Just after 9:30 p.m. EST, the AP called Paul Ryan’s race in Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional district, announcing that the incumbent Speaker of the House will return to Washington in January. Ryan successfully fended off Democrat Ryan Solen, Libertarian Jason Lebeck, and Spencer Zimmerman, an independent who was running under a “Trump Conservative” banner.
Ryan’s next Congressional term will be his tenth; he’s represented his southeastern district without interruption since the 1998 midterm election. A lifelong public servant, Ryan has been a champion of conservative causes in Washington, gaining notoriety for his particularly extreme budget cut proposals.
In 2012, Ryan was tapped by Mitt Romney to serve as the Vice Presidential candidate on the Republican ticket that was ultimately defeated by Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Last fall, Ryan was drafted by his fellow House Republicans to replace the resigning John Boehner as Speaker of the House.
However, the speakership may be difficult for Ryan to retain. Despite being seen by many establishment Republicans as a future presidential candidate, he drew the ire of Trump supporters for waffling on his support for the nominee. (Trump even went so far as to tease an endorsement for Ryan’s opponent in his primary race.) After the Access Hollywood leaks this October, Ryan canceled a campaign event with Trump.