If the Republican party goes down in flames in 2016 as it is fully expected to do, many plan to look to Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan as their savior for 2020 and beyond.
At this point, Republicans have mostly given up on the 2016 race as even they hope that Donald Trump loses the race. Several die-hard Republicans have even said they would vote for Clinton instead while other more cautious party liners are reluctantly backing Trump but expecting the worst.
The best case scenario at this point is for Trump to lose the 2016 race and for the party to attach all of the bad feelings toward the GOP to the failed candidate. Then they can start fresh, hopefully with a base who has gotten the outright insane out of their system.
Enter Paul Ryan. So sensible. So clean. Ryan will seem in 2020 a breath of fresh air, with the level of experience and not-Clinton-ness that Republicans will be craving.
It makes sense that Ryan chose to stay out of the puddle of mud that is the 2016 race, knowing that it would only destroy his reputation. At least in 2020 the Republican pretty-boy will have a real chance.
Of course, all of this depends upon Donald Trump losing the nomination which it seems as if he will, though every other prediction about Trump has been false so far. . .
Still not sure? This article for Roll Call makes a pretty convincing argument for Paul Ryan being the real hero of the Republican party and shows how the dominoes are most likely to fall into place.