Update: Since this article was published Paul Ryan issued a statement saying he would not accept the Republican nomination.
House Speaker Paul Ryan has not completely dismissed accepting the Republican presidential nomination in the event of a contested party convention.
In an exclusive interview with CNBC, Ryan admitted that people have broached the topic of him arriving as the savior of a party if the nomination process is still in flux by the time of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio on July 18 to 21.
“You know, I haven’t given any thought to this stuff,” Ryan said. “People say, ‘What about the contested convention?’ I say, well, there are a lot of people running for president. We’ll see. Who knows.”
Ever since Ryan announced he wouldn’t be running for president early last year, he has consistently refused entering the race. Last week, a political committee formed to draft Ryan for president was shut down after his aides disavowed the committee.
Ryan reiterated his position during the interview. “I actually think you should run for president if you’re going to be president, if you want to be president. I’m not running for president. I made that decision, consciously, not to.”
The questions persist, however, as Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump continues to be the front-runner for the nomination after he added to his delegate lead following Tuesday’s elections. However, it remains to be seen if he can secure the 1,237 delegates needed to win the party nomination outright, and the prospects of a brokered convention remains one of the chief ways of stopping his nomination, if Republican establishment figures have their say.
Ryan has previously said he would back whoever wins the Republican nomination, although he has also criticized Trump for his aggressive tone during rallies.