WASHINGTON (AP) — Paul Ryan is getting his groove back.
The failed vice presidential candidate has a prime seat among Republican leaders looking to avoid the "fiscal cliff." He has the ear of fellow Republicans looking for cues about what deals might be made. And his self-described policy wonkiness is still in demand on Capitol Hill.
In short, Ryan's sometimes muted turn as Mitt Romney's running mate did little damage to his brand.
As Colorado Rep. Cory Gardner puts it, "Everyone respected Paul before, but now it's been notarized by the American public."
Ryan knows both the policy and political implications that come with the still-developing proposals on the fiscal cliff. That's one reason House Speaker John Boehner wants him in the room every morning when GOP leaders meet to hatch strategy.