During his news conference on Thursday, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) said Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) should resign amid allegations he sexually harassed multiple women.
“So, Marion Brown — is that her name I think?” Ryan began, referring to a former Conyers staffer who detailed the harassment she says she regularly experienced from the congressman over her 11 years working for him during an interview on Thursday’s Today show. “I heard what she said this morning on NBC. No one should have to go through something like that, let alone here in Congress, so yes, I think he should resign, and he should resign immediately. I’ve just been briefed on the torrent of allegations and I think he should.”
But Ryan hasn’t always been so resolute in the belief that men credibly accused of sexual harassment are unfit to serve.
In October of last year, 14 women came forward to accuse then-Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump of sexual assault — not including a number of women who accused him of harassment. Most of the women came forward with their accusations against Trump after a 2005 recording of him bragging about groping women was published by the Washington Post on October 7.
In the days following the publication of the so-called “Access Hollywood tape,” Ryan did not call for Trump to drop out. In fact, days before the election, Ryan campaigned with Trump’s running mate, Mike Pence, and the two told Republicans it was time for them to “come home” and vote for their party’s nominee.
Months after Trump won the election, audio emerged of Ryan telling House Republicans during a conference call on October 10, 2016 that he was “not going to defend Donald Trump — not now, not in the future.” But when that audio surfaced in March, Ryan spokesman Brendan Buck responded by pointing out that “obviously a lot has happened since then.”
“As everyone knows… this was in response to that [the Access Hollywood tape], but as everyone knows, they came together toward the end of the campaign and the speaker vocally supported him and even campaigned with Pence,” Buck told Breitbart.
While “a lot” may have happened since the publication of the Access Hollywood tape, the accusations against Trump remain as credible as ever. But with corporate tax cuts at stake, Ryan only seems to think sexual misconduct allegations are worth taking seriously when they’re made against Democrats.