Rep. Paul Ryan formally declared his candidacy for speaker of the U.S. House Thursday evening, pledging in a letter to GOP colleagues, "We have an opportunity to turn the page."
"Instead of rising to the occasion, Washington is falling short_including the House of Representatives. We are not solving the country's problems; we are only adding to them," he wrote. It is time, he said, "to start with a clean slate, and to rebuild what has been lost."
Ryan will face elections next week in a closed-door House GOP meeting on Wednesday and then on the House floor Thursday. His success is assured.
Awaiting him will be a mess of trouble: a Nov. 3...