- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, the GOP’s vice presidential nominee, on Wednesday said he “strongly” endorses House Speaker Paul Ryan’s re-election bid — a day after Donald Trump said he wasn’t there yet on Mr. Ryan.

“In politics, it takes time to have relationships together. I strongly support Paul Ryan — strongly endorse his re-election,” Mr. Pence said on Fox News. “He’s a longtime friend. He’s a strong conservative leader.”

Mr. Ryan is squaring off against businessman Paul Nehlen in a GOP primary this Tuesday.

Mr. Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, told the Washington Post Tuesday he’s not quite there yet on supporting Mr. Ryan — using similar language Mr. Ryan did when he declined to back Mr. Trump in early May.

Mr. Ryan has since thrown his support behind Mr. Trump. The speaker’s campaign said Tuesday neither Mr. Ryan nor anyone on his team has ever asked for Mr. Trump’s endorsement, and that they’re confident in a victory next week regardless.

Mr. Pence said he spoke with Mr. Trump Wednesday morning about his support for Mr. Ryan and their longtime friendship.

“He strongly encouraged me to endorse Paul Ryan in next Tuesday’s primary, and I’m pleased to do it,” Mr. Pence said.

“I think what Donald Trump said is he’s not there yet,” he said.

“These are two men that are building a good relationship, and I’m very confident after Donald Trump’s elected president and Paul Ryan’s re-elected to Congress and as speaker of the House these two men are going to do great things to restore this country at home and abroad,” he said.

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