“It’s not just a picture,” Malespina explained. “It’s being associated with a person who puts his party before his country.”
Malespina’s mother, Elissa Malespina, helped explain his decision saying, “The point was, ‘I don't want to be associated with him, and his policies and what he stands for.’”
Some parents disagreed with the photo boycott on social media. One said the students should respect the office of the Speaker even if they do not agree with him or her.
Miles Handelman was one of the students who posed with Ryan. He said, “I thought it would be very cool just seeing the man who is the third most powerful man in our country. It would be cool, even if you disagree with him.”
Paul Ryan posted a picture from the photo-op on his Instagram account. Students say he left unaware of their classmate’s protest.