Summary: Today at a press conference with Republican leaders, Speaker Ryan discussed the lying in honor of Rev. Billy Graham, the system failures that led to the Parkland shooting, and the benefits Americans are seeing thanks to tax reform.

The Late Rev. Billy Graham
“If there is any American whose life and life’s work deserves to be honored by lying in honor in the U.S. Capitol, it’s Billy Graham. So it’s an honor for us here in the Capitol to receive Reverend Graham’s casket and to greet his family. So, that’s something we’re very proud to do and reflective of.

Parkland Shooting
“First off, you know, I want to say all of us have been deeply troubled by this Parkland shooting. This is a time for asking tough questions: How could this have happened? What can we do to make our schools safer in the future? We’re going to be looking at the system failures that occurred here. We’re going to be talking about what changes are needed.

“As you know, the House has already taken action to improve our background check system. We clearly believe that there is a gap in our background check system that needs to be filled. We also put in place sweeping mental health reform. But those reforms still have a ways to go to be implemented. These are the kinds of things we’re going to be discussing with our members, with the Senate, and with the president.

“I had the fortune of being able to go and meet with people in Broward County—first responders, local elected leaders—just to hear firsthand about what had happened and the ensuing chaos and the breakdowns that occurred. So this is something that we’re very, very, very troubled by, and we are going to be having the kind of conversations we need to have with our fellow members to do what we can do to try and make sure something like this doesn’t happen again. And again, there are a lot of system failures that we need to look at here.

Tax Reform
“On a more positive note, I also got to spend time with local businesses in Wisconsin last week, learning about how the tax reform law is making them better and making them much more competitive. It’s really something. These small businesses told me that tax reform is enabling them to increase capital investments in their people, in their equipment, in their training. I’ve talked to many business leaders—small businesses—who are now confident they can go take a risk and expand employees, expand operations, giving bonuses, giving raises, adding to the benefits. This is what area are seeing all over the country. Wages for hardworking Americans are increasing and paychecks are getting bigger. And this is all thanks to tax reform. And people are actually noticing it.

“A new survey last week revealed that confidence among small-business owners has hit a record high, driven by tax reform. A New York Times poll showed that the majority of Americans now support tax reform—51 percent of Americans now approve of the new tax reform law. That’s up from 37 percent in November, because I think you saw a lot of the rhetoric that was flying around here in November is not meeting the reality that people are actually seeing in their own paychecks.

“This is heartening. The American people’s confidence in our economy is coming back, and rightly so. Tax reform is growing our economy. It is creating opportunities. And it’s helping hardworking Americans the most.”