Speaker Paul Ryan says it's time to wipe the slate clean. The Chad Hasty Show airs 8:30-11am on 790AM KFYO.

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Speaker Paul Ryan

Paul Ryan was elected as the 54th House Speaker yesterday and according to POLITICO, he wants to wipe the slate clean and start over.

The 16-year veteran of Congress received the support of all but nine of his colleagues in an election to replace John Boehner Thursday, ending a tumultuous month-long period for the Republican Party, and the House of Representatives.

“To me, the House of Representatives represented the best of America, the boundless opportunity to do good,” Ryan said after the election, speaking from the speaker’s podium. “But let’s be frank. The House is broken. We’re not solving problems, we’re adding to them. And I’m not interested in laying blame. We're not settling scores, we’re wiping the slate clean.”

Ryan won a commanding 236 of 245 Republican votes, a feat in a deeply fractured and divided party. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California received 184 votes, and nine Republicans voted for Florida Rep. Daniel Webster. The resounding victory gives hope that Ryan might be able to heal an institution damaged by years of hyper-partisanship and crisis-driven legislating.

Ryan has always been an outsized figure on Capitol Hill. His budgets were sharply criticized by Democrats and used as an election-season weapon. But the GOP stuck with the spending plans and increased their House majority — and Ryan's stature has only grown.

He returned to the House after an unsuccessful bid for vice president in 2012, and was later elected to lead the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee. It was his life’s goal until he was dragged into the speakership, a job he said never wanted. But now that he's been elected, the former chairman of the Ways and Means Committee is positioning himself as a clean break from Boehner, whose tenure was marked by divisive intraparty battles.

In his remarks on the House floor, Ryan echoed his campaign promises. He wants to empower committee chairs and decentralize power, restoring regular order in an institution that’s long been run from the top down.

“I come at this job as a two-time committee chair,” Ryan said, referring to his time atop the Budget and Ways and Means committees. “The committees should retake the lead in drafting legislation.”

A man who's often been lauded — and chided — for his ideas, Ryan promised that during his reign Congress “will not duck the tough issues, we will take them head on.”

“My friends, you have done me a great honor,” Ryan said. “The people of this country, they have done all of us a great honor. Now let’s prove ourselves worthy of it.”

Ryan said all the right things yesterday, but as I've said before it's not what you say anymore that counts, it's what you do. Ryan has a lot to prove and he will be given every chance to show that he can lead.

Evil Pumpkins!

Did you set out pumpkins for Halloween? According to FOX News, you are partly responsible for climate change.

Pumpkins, according to the Department of Energy’s website, contribute to global warming by decomposing into methane, a harmful greenhouse gas the federal government says is 20 times as scary as carbon dioxide.

“With the passing of Halloween, millions of pounds of pumpkins have turned from seasonal decorations to trash destined for landfills, adding to more than 254 million tons of municipal solid waste produced in the United States every year,” the agency warns. “This Halloween, think of turning this seasonal waste into energy as a very important 'trick' that can have a positive environmental and energy impact.”

The department hopes that one day the pesky pumpkins can be turned into clean energy, and is working with industry players to develop and test “biorefineries,” facilities “capable of efficiently converting plant and waste material into affordable biofuels, biopower and other products.”

"It might not be long until the 1.3 billion pounds of pumpkins we produce annually are nearly as important to our energy security as they are to Halloween!" the department offers.

We can't even enjoy Halloween without a lecture about climate change these days.