Donald Trump declined to endorse House Speaker Paul Ryan and two Republican senators who face tough re-election bids, claiming on Tuesday that he's "not quite there yet."

"I like Paul, but these are horrible times for our country. We need very strong leadership. We need very, very strong leadership. And I'm just not quite there yet. I'm not quite there yet," the Republican presidential nominee said of endorsing Paul Ryan during an interview with the Washington Post.

Ryan, who ultimately decided to back his party's nominee, gave a similar answer in May when he was first asked about endorsing Trump. "To be perfectly candid, I'm not ready to do that right now," he had told CNN.

The Wisconsin Republican is being challenged by local businessman Paul Nehlen in his state's congressional primary, which is scheduled to take place next Tuesday. Trump posted a tweet on Monday in which he thanked Nehlen for his "kinds words" of support after the candidate found himself embroiled in controversy for attacking Khizr and Ghazala Khan, two Gold Star parents who've been critical of him.

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