CongressAmerican Government

The Speaker Opts to Leave the House

Posted on in Congress · American Government


Speaker Paul Ryan announced last week that he will not run for reelection this year and will leave Congress at the end of his term. 

Instructors, click the link below to download this week’s lecture for use in your classroom. The deck contains a writing prompt, a debate question, as well as other assessment questions.

Download the Power Point Lecture Spark for The Speaker Opts to Leave the House


“Why Ryan called it quits”

“The legacy of Paul Ryan”

“Paul Ryan is quitting way before other House speakers would have”

“Ryan deepens House GOP’s 2018 woes”

“Who are likely contenders to replace Paul Ryan as House speaker?

“Meet ‘Iron Stache,’ the Democrat running to replace Paul Ryan in Wisconsin”

“With Paul Ryan’s exit, Trump’s hold on the GOP is now complete”

“What’s behind Paul Ryan’s sudden exit”

“Paul Ryan’s Real Legacy: Donald Trump”


  • WritingWhy is it unusual for Paul Ryan to be stepping away from the Speaker’s position this year?
  • Debate: Speakers of the House of Representatives should be term limited in their role with Speakers serving no more than 4  years.
  • Poll: Paul Ryan should have stayed on as Speaker and help his party retain its majority in the US House.
  • Short Answer: Why was Paul Ryan’s path to the Speaker’s office unique if not unprecedented?


Current events quiz:

1)  It is unusual for a Speaker to leave the House when his party controls all three branches of government. (T/F)

2) Paul Ryan was one of the longest serving Speakers in history. (T/F)

3) The Speaker of the House is the only legislative office mentioned in the Constitution. (T/F)

4) Paul Ryan was chosen by the _______ party to be Speaker in 2015 upon the resignation of _______

a. Republican, Newt Gingrich

b .Democratic, Nancy Pelosi

c. Republican, John Boehner

d. Democratic, Dennis Hastert

5) Speakers of the House are chosen by

a. the President

b. a unanimous vote by members of the House

c. the majority party in the Senate

d. the majority party in the House



1. True

2. False

3. True

4. C

5. D


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