On Tuesday, Paul Ryan offered a rare break with President Trump when he told WVLK of the president's controversial plan to end birthright citizenship, "You obviously cannot do that. You cannot end birthright citizenship with an executive order." He went on to note that conservatives "believe in the Constitution" and did not appreciate former President Obama using executive action to change immigration laws. The 14th amendment is "pretty clear," he added, meaning the only way to end birthright citizenship, in his view, would be through "a very very lengthy Constitutional process." On Wednesday, Trump hit back, NBC News reports.
"Paul Ryan should be focusing on holding the Majority rather than giving his opinions on Birthright Citizenship, something he knows nothing about!" the POTUS tweeted. "Our new Republican Majority will work on this, Closing the Immigration Loopholes and Securing our Border!" A senior GOP aide defended Ryan to CNN following Trump's tweet: "This is a great way to screw up the message a week before the election. First the birthright comment itself and now attacking the top Republican in Congress who is trying to save our majority." (Trump has been wrangling with the 14th amendment on Twitter.)