Paul Ryan and Barack Obama Working Together on an Unread Trade Bill

Since everyone knows that Paul Ryan and the President are allied, CNN reports it as if it is an irony. No, it is business as usual.

This CNN story says it all, “Paul Ryan’s new partner: Obama.”

If things had gone differently in the 2012 presidential election, Paul Ryan would be vice president right now.

Instead, he’s allied with the President he tried to defeat. As chairman of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, he’s muscling a controversial trade bill through the House that could shape President Barack Obama’s legacy – and his own.

“Yeah, the irony’s not necessarily lost on me. Look, I think the President on this particular issue is right and therefore I think this is good for our country, good for the people I represent. Trade is very important for America – it’s how we get more jobs,” Ryan told us during an interview in his Capitol office this week.

But did he ever envision working this closely with Obama?

“I’ve done a lot of things in my career that I never envisioned in the future,” replied Ryan. “It doesn’t bother me that the person I ran against in 2012 is the person I’m working with on this because it’s the right thing for the country.”

The fact that Obama and Ryan were running against each other in 2012 only proves that they are rivals, not that they are really philosophically opposed. My question for Ryan is: Has he read the bill? Or is he saying we must give the President trade authority in order to find out what will be in the bill?

If he does plan to read the bill, why not wait to give the President all that authority after he knows what’s in it?

Personally, I don’t find the collusion of Paul Ryan and Barack Obama all that much of an irony. I think the fact that the Democrats temporarily saved us from Republican-Obama cooperation is more deserving of that description.