House Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Thursday the numbers have improved, and he now thinks Republicans will keep control of the House in this year’s elections

The Wisconsin Republican, who is retiring at the end of this year, said the GOP has checked off the items it needed on its to-do list, and that’s left the party in much better shape.

“I was not confident in 2017. I’m confident now based on all the numbers we’ve seen,” he said at the Economic Club of Washington.

Key to the change, he said, was the GOP’s ability to pass a major tax overhaul in December.

Mr. Ryan said that bill is actually doing better than they’d expected in terms of the budget, where scorekeepers had predicted massive deficits.

“The growth is coming in better and faster,” Mr. Ryan said, pointing to April’s monthly tax intake, which was the highest in the nation’s history.

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