Charlie Sykes douses cold water on Paul Ryan's argument for staying on board with Fox News
Conservative pundit Charlie Sykes recently pushed back against former House Speaker Paul Ryan's remarks suggesting that he could "steer the network away from the craziness, and from bats**t crazy lies about the election."
The former lawmaker, who is now a board member for Fox News, made his remarks during a recent interview with Sykes following the latest bombshells reported on the Dominion Voting Systems defamation lawsuit against the news network.
During their discussion, Ryan claimed he had “a responsibility to offer my opinion and perspective” but insisted he'd done so behind closed doors.
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However, Sykes argues that Ryan's approach to this situation is relatively similar to the one he took when former President Donald Trump was in office.
In his analysis published by The Bulwark, Sykes wrote that the former lawmaker contributed to the “hive-mind rationalization” within the Republican Party as he explained what appears to be the party's philosophy.
"The right’s political culture now relies on this hive-mind rationalization that masquerades as a philosophy: That you can serve the greater good by staying silent — in the room — and therefore relevant," Sykes wrote.
He added, "Some of this is just simple moral cowardice; a lot of it is grift, but it’s not just Paul Ryan. In-the-roomism is a deeply internalized ethos — or perhaps anti-ethos — that has shaped the Republican party’s serial compromises, capitulations, and sellouts."
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Sykes also weighed in on what appears to be Ryan's mindset in the midst of these circumstances and why some Republican leaders refuse to push back. He used past occurrences to highlight the consequences lawmakers tend to face when they do offer opposing views.
"In this mindset, speaking out or taking a stand is foolish, because it means you lose your place at the table and your leverage," he wrote. "(Just look at what happened to Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger!) It’s the story that conservatives have been telling themselves for years now, and you can find it in virtually every corner of the right’s interlocking ecosystems."
At one point in the piece, Sykes also pushed back against Ryan's excuse for staying on the Fox News board.
“By staying on the board, Ryan seems to be telling himself, he will be able to steer the network away from the craziness, and from batshit crazy lies about the election,” he added. “But here’s the thing: He didn’t.”
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