Will they run? Scott Walker, Paul Ryan seen as contenders for 2016 Republican presidential nomination

MADISON (WITI) -- There's an old joke in politics: When do we start thinking about the next election? About five minutes after the polls close! That's certainly the case in Wisconsin. We're just a week removed from the midterm election, and already there's speculation about Wisconsin's two most prominent politicians and whether they'll run for president in 2016.

Last week, Governor Scott Walker and Congressman Paul Ryan were campaigning together. A year from now, they could be campaigning against one another.

Walker and Ryan are considered contenders for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.

"Every politician wants to be president. It's like making it to the Major Leagues if you like playing baseball," UW-Milwaukee Professor Mordecai Lee said.

Lee says Walker is more likely to run for president in 2016, and says a successful campaign has to start nearly a year in advance.

"I would suspect that -- assuming Governor Walker would like to run for president in this cycle -- that as we speak, he's making sure that the team that was so successful for him in state politics will be on board for a presidential run," Lee said.

Ever since his election night victory, Walker has been speaking about his governorship in national terms and making national television appearances -- asking questions about a possible presidential run.

This past Sunday on "Meet the Press," Walker said: "We'll see what the future holds."

He told a FOX News anchor: "There's a number of us who are good prospects out there."

Paul Ryan received his party's nomination for vice president two years ago.

Only 25% of Wisconsin voters want to see Walker run for president, whereas 40% of Wisconsin voters want to see Ryan run in 2016.

Both Walker and Ryan have authored books -- something that's seen as a first step for any serious presidential contender.

This week, Ryan told FOX6 News his decision would come next year.

"I'm going to make that decision early in 2015, and right now I've been so focused on 2014, and it's still 2014 and we still have four weeks left in session this Congress.  I'm going to focus on that and then after that, in 2015, I'll make that decision," Ryan said.

2016's first presidential contest, the Iowa Caucuses are about 15 months away.

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