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"I leave the way I started: just a regular guy, humbled by the chance to do a big job," John Boehner said on his final day as House speaker

By Tierney McAfee
Updated October 29, 2015 12:30 PM
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Credit: Ron Sachs/CNP/Zuma; IM LO SCALZO/EPA

Rep. Paul Ryan was elected speaker of the House on Thursday, ending John Boehner‘s tenure in the top-ranking position.

Ryan, 45, who was officially nominated for the job by House Republicans on Wednesday, earned the votes of 236 members of the House of Representatives.

The former vice presidential candidate told reporters after the internal GOP vote Wednesday, “We are not going to have a House that looks like it’s looked the last two years. We are going to move forward. We are going to unify. Our party has lost its vision, and we are going to replace it with a vision.”

Boehner, 65, announced his resignation from Congress on Sept. 25, after renewed calls for him to step down. “It had become clear to me that this prolonged leadership turmoil would do irreparable harm to the institution,” he said at the time.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy announced his run for House speaker shortly thereafter, and was thought to be a shoo-in before he dropped out suddenly following a controversial statement he made about the Benghazi committee.

Ryan at first resisted the call to run for the position, saying he would consider it only if certain conditions were met, including a revamp of House rules “so that everyone can be a more effective representative.”

Boehner delivered his farewell address before the vote on Thursday, tissue box in hand. “I leave with no regrets, no burdens,” he told his colleagues and friends, according to The New York Times. “If anything, I leave the way I started: just a regular guy, humbled by the chance to do a big job.”

Boehner then welcomed Ryan to the job by saying, “There’s a difference between being asked to do something and being called to do something. Paul is being called to serve with grace and with energy, and I wish him and his family all the best.”

[IMAGE “1” “” “std” ]The Ohio Republican also teared up Wednesday during his final House Leadership meeting in his office, reports The Washington Post. [IMAGE “2” “” “std” ]

Ryan, meanwhile, appeared to be making himself comfortable during the meeting in his soon-to-be office.