Trump, Ryan to meet amid growing Republican calls to unify

TrumpRyan397260_20160512_041623Fox News – After months of running a campaign railing against the Washington political establishment, Donald Trump – now the presumptive Republican presidential nominee – sits down opposite GOP leaders Thursday morning with nothing less than party unity on the line.

The billionaire businessman has a string of back-to-back meetings lined up in the shadow of the Capitol, starting with a sit-down with House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus.

Ryan, the highest-ranking GOP elected official, so far has refused to endorse Trump, saying last week he was “just not ready to do so.” On Wednesday, Ryan said he wanted to pursue “real unification” among Republicans after a hotly contested primary campaign.

When asked by Fox News’ Greta van Susteren, “Who is the leader of the Republican Party today?” the real estate mogul responded, “Well, I would say Paul Ryan … for the time being and maybe for a long time.”

Trump has two meetings scheduled with Ryan on Thursday, with the second involving Ryan’s House leadership team. Trump also is expected to meet with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and other top Senate Republicans.

“We cannot afford to lose this election to Hillary Clinton,” Ryan said at a news conference Wednesday, adding that “to pretend [Republicans are] unified as a party” would mean contesting the general election campaign at “half strength.”

After months of running a campaign railing against the Washington political establishment, Donald Trump – now the presumptive Republican presidential nominee – sits down opposite GOP leaders Thursday morning with nothing less than party unity on the line.

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