Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump has called for party unity to aid his chances of winning the White House. The House Speaker, Republican Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, is not ready to align himself with Trump just yet.
On May 5, Ryan revealed that while Trump was likely to become the standard-bearer for the GOP, he was not going to endorse him just yet.
"I’m just not ready to that at this point," Ryan told CNN. "I’m not there right now."
The House Speaker’s reluctance to embrace Trump, and by his extension the business mogul’s agenda, goes against the Senate Majority Leader, Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who threw his weight behind Trump on May 4.
Ryan indicated that it would be up to Trump to unify the party and hinted that he does not approve of the more controversial components of the business mogul’s platform.
Ryan said he would support Trump if he could offer Americans "something they’re proud to support and proud to be a part of, adding that "we’ve got a ways to go from here to there."
The business mogul swiftly voiced his displeasure with the House Speaker, releasing a statement on his official campaign website.
“I am not ready to support Speaker Ryan’s agenda,” Trump said in the May 5 release. “Perhaps in the future we can work together and come to an agreement about what is best for the American people.”
On May 6, the business mogul signaled that he does not believe the responsibility of uniting the party rests on his shoulders; rather it is Ryan who must come to him.
“Paul Ryan said that I inherited something very special, the Republican Party,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Wrong, I didn’t inherit it, I won with millions of voters!”
Later that morning, the business mogul called into Fox News’ “Fox and Friends” and, when asked about Ryan’s refusal to endorse him, he admitted that he "was surprised by it."
“And by the way, many other people were surprised by it, and some were really surprised by it and not happy about it,” Trump continued, although he did not name anyone who was upset by Ryan’s decision other than himself.
One of the "Fox and Friends" hosts then asked Trump whether he thought Ryan was upset by his criticism of former Republican Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts, who the House Speaker ran alongside with in the 2012 GOP ticket.
“Well, they lost a race that should’ve been won last time and I’ve been very open about it,” Trump said. “That’s was a race that should’ve been easily won. … I mean he talks about unity, but what is this about unity?”
Trump spokeswoman Katrina Pierson later told CNN that Ryan was unfit to be Speaker of the House if he could not back Trump.
“The issue here isn’t about Donald Trump — if you can’t hold yourself to the standard that you hold everyone else, the problem is with you,” Pierson said.
The Republican National Committee Chairman, Reince Priebus, has stated that he is mediating between Trump and Ryan and plans to have them meet to hash out their differences.
Priebus told Politico that the business mogul called him almost immediately after Ryan declined to endorse him.
“I said listen, let me just, my view is just relax and be gracious and I’ll talk to Paul and we’ll try to work on this … it is going to take some time in some cases for people to work through differences,” Priebus said.