Today I Learn… I make a point of learning something new everyday. This is what I learn each day

1, Feb 13, 2013

Paul Ryan, a highly effective politician, part I

Filed under: politician,Reading — admin @ 12:27 am

Last month, while reading The Price of Politics by Bob Woodward, 2012, I shared this part with my daughter. It talks about Paul Ryan and how he rose so quickly as a politician. Here’s what Bod Woodward wrote of him, pp. 82-84.

Paul Ryan was 29 years old when he first became the member of the US House of Representative. He believed his most important challenge was learning how to be an effective lawmaker, and he began charting a path right away. Having lost his father at the age of 16, he had always sought mentors, … Now he reached out again, asking a number of the House’s senior members to breakfast or lunch, seeking guidance.

There were two persons from whom he benefited most. The first one was Barney Frank. Though they were ideological opposites, Frank gave him what Ryan considered the best advice he got about how to be an effective congressman. Be a specialist, Frank told him, not a generalist. Focus on one set of issues. Get on the committee that you care about, and then learn more about the topic than anybody else.

Second, Bill Thomas told him to talk to all the experts you can find, and read everything you can. Know these things inside and out so that you really know what you are talking about whenever you talk.
To be continued…

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