It's a 39-second video that could double for a campaign ad -- again. This time, House Speaker Paul Ryan's going on the road to follow up.
On Monday, Ryan's office posted another glossy, highly produced video of him delivering an inspiring speech against a backdrop of American flags, before an enraptured audience in an unidentified conference room.
Titled "Problems We Can Fix," Ryan speaks about a nation that's on the wrong track, and how his brand of optimism will fix it.
"I think the polls basically say about seven out of 10 Americans think that America is headed in the wrong direction," says Ryan, who represents Wisconsin and was elected speaker in January. "OK. Then as a member of Congress, it is not our job simply to say we are just as angry as the rest of everybody else. It is not our job to just put gas on the fire."
As he speaks, the video cuts to a series of images defining the problem from a conservative perspective: President Barack Obama's meeting with Raul Castro in Cuba; former IRS chief Lois Lerner testifying before Congress; the Veterans Administration scandal; Obama signing the Affordable Care Act into law; the president smiling and winking at the camera.
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Unlike the anger consuming the current Republican electorate during the presidential primary, "It is our job to channel this concern, this fear, this anxiety, this anger, into solutions—into ideas on how to fix it," says Ryan, between close-ups of him and the audience, seated in what looks like a large Capitol Hill conference room and using their cell phones to record his presentation.
"America, we have problems that we can fix, and we need to do this together," he says.
It's the second campaign-style videoRyan's office has released in recent months.
The first, "Politics These Days," featured the House speaker decrying the divisiveness on the campaign trail and calling for bipartisan cooperation for the sake of problem-solving.
The previous video, produced in a similar style -- and coming amid a particularly acrimonious stretch of the Republican presidential campaign -- triggered a flurry of speculation about Ryan entering the race to save the party from having to nominate current front-runner Donald Trump.
While Ryan repeatedly insisted he's not interested in the job, insiders pointed out that the GOP's 2012 vice presidential nominee also claimed not to be interested in the House speaker position he holds now, which he accepted after pressure from the establishment.
Still, Ryan's office maintains he's only interested in the job he's got now, and is using the videos to define his agenda to the public. The speaker, they say, will follow up on the video with a student town hall at Georgetown University on Wednesday.
"That's why House Republicans are focused on actually fixing the problems facing us, not just bemoaning how bad things are," Ryan's team said in a statement. The video, it adds, "previews the optimism and determination that will be required to move America forward."
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