Paul Ryan Not Prepared to Endorse Donald Trump

House Speaker Paul Ryan
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R., Wisc.) / AP
May 5, 2016

House Speaker Paul Ryan will not yet endorse Donald Trump for president.

The Wisconsin lawmaker told CNN’s Jake Tapper in an interview that aired Thursday afternoon that he is not prepared to endorse the business mogul, who has been dubbed the presumptive nominee by the Republican National Committee.

"I’m just not ready to do that at this point. I’m just not there right now," Ryan said when asked if he would support Trump, stressing the need for the presumptive nominee to "unify the party."

Ryan said that, while he hopes to ultimately support Trump, he is not yet comfortable to endorse the frontrunner based on the campaign he has run thus far. The House speaker’s announcement appears to represent a departure from previous assertions that he would support the eventual GOP nominee.

"What’s required is that we unify the party," Ryan explained. "I think for this to work is to take the principles and advance them. That’s what we want to see. Saying that we’re unified does not unify us, but actually taking the principles that we believe in and running a campaign that the Republicans can be proud about, and that can actually appeal to the majority of Americans. That’s what takes it unify the party."

Ryan made clear, however, that he will never support likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Ryan has previously criticized Trump for his contentious statements, such as the business mogul’s suggestion earlier this year that there could be riots at the GOP convention in July if he is not the nominee.

Ryan’s comments come as Republican lawmakers, donors, and operatives have been grappling with the notion of Trump as the inevitable nominee. Earlier this week, Trump’s strong performance in the Indiana primary led his remaining competitors, Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas) and Ohio Gov. John Kasich, to suspend their respective campaigns.

While the RNC has urged Republicans to rally around Trump’s candidacy, some have resisted his controversial campaign, including 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.