Ryan returns to Congressional seat; long-term future unknown

CREATED Nov 7, 2012 - UPDATED: Nov 7, 2012

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BOSTON- Believe it or not, people are already talking about the next presidential election.

The next presidential election is only four years away and already political pundits are asking: Will Paul Ryan run in 2016?  The answer won't come for awhile, but the speculation has begun.

When Republican Paul Ryan walked out on the national stage with his family on election night, it was the end of a historic run for the 42-year-old from Janesville.  Republican presidential challenger Mitt Romney seemed to have no regrets about his running mate.

In a written statement, Paul Ryan said: "I am immensely proud of the campaign we ran, and I remain grateful to Governor Romney for the honor of being his running mate."

The road doesn't end for Ryan in Boston.  He still has a powerful job in Washington D.C. as chairman of the House Budget Committee.

A high-profile position that will allow him to challenge President Obama on issues and perhaps find a way to cooperate with the new administration.  Either way, it will keep him in the news and on the list of potential presidential candidates in just four years.

There are already names floating around for 2016. And if Ryan does decide to run he may find himself competing against a close friend.  Governor Walker could be on that list if he wins re-election in two years.