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Newly elected speaker Ryan promises to fix 'broken' US House

(Agencies) Updated: 2015-10-30 08:52

Newly elected speaker Ryan promises to fix 'broken' US House

US House of Representives Speaker-elect Paul Ryan (L) salutes the members of the House as he stands with outgoing Speaker John Boehner after Ryan was elected on Capitol Hill in Washington, October 29, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

WASHINGTON - Newly elected US House Speaker Paul Ryan on Thursday promised to sweep away Republican Party differences and repair a "broken" House of Representatives by returning legislative power to committees and rank-and-file members.

Ryan won 236 votes among the chamber's 247 Republicans to be elected speaker, abandoned by only a handful of conservatives who mounted repeated revolts that pushed out his predecessor, John Boehner, who retired.

Ryan said in a speech after the vote that infighting in the Republican - majority House had been counterproductive and added to the legislative gridlock in Washington.

"We're not solving problems, we're adding to them and I am not interested in laying blame," Ryan said.

"We are not settling scores, we are wiping the slate clean," Ryan added to applause.

Ryan said the House would tackle tough issues, including reducing budget deficits and reforming taxes, saying this would help raise incomes and bring people out of poverty.

The Wisconsin congressman said he would return control over drafting legislation to committees and rank-and-file members, adding: "If you know the issue you should write the bill".

A constant source of friction among conservatives had been Boehner's practice of drafting major spending legislation in secret, often in negotiations with Democrats as fiscal deadlines loomed.

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