Politics

Paul Ryan says he avoids looking at Twitter, won't comment on Trump tweets

MADISON, Wis. - House Speaker Paul Ryan is telling high school students that he tries to avoid looking at Twitter.

Ryan made the comment Friday while fielding questions from students at Badger High School in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Ryan quipped, "I try not to look at Twitter too much these days to be honest with you."

He did not mention prolific tweeter President Donald Trump during his comment, which drew a smattering of giggles from the students. He refused to comment on Trump's messages on Twitter that imply he may have recorded telephone conversations with former FBI Director James Comey.

Ryan told reporters Friday he's "not going to comment on the tweets of the day or the hour." Ryan says "I'm going to leave it to the president to talk about and defend his tweets."

Trump has criticized Ryan, and many others, through tweets both as a candidate and as president.

None of the students asked Ryan about Trump and he never said the president's name.

Ryan told the students their generation can set a better tone in the country. About 50 protesters gathered outside the high school during Ryan's visit.

Ryan was also set to tour Prestige Paints in Delavan, the hometown of Gov. Scott Walker. Ryan has been busy making stops in his congressional district in recent weeks, touting a Republican tax reform proposal and answering questions about President Donald Trump's firing of FBI director James Comey.

Ryan has defended the firing and rejected calls for the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate Russia's involvement in the election.

"No one is disputing the the fact that the president has the right to hire or fire an FBI director. He made that decision. It's been made," Ryan said. "I think what's important now is that we find a qualified and capable person that people have confidence in to take over the FBI. It's also important that the professionals there keep doing their jobs."

On Saturday, Ryan is slated to speak at the Wisconsin Republican Convention in Wisconsin Dells.

Ryan is also defending not holding any in-person town hall meetings recently in his congressional district, saying he is meeting with constituents in ways they "don't have to go into a harassing environment." Ryan says he has no opinion on Democratic Rep. Mark Pocan, of Wisconsin, holding a town hall in his district on Friday.


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