At a press conference today, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) discussed their meeting at the White House with President Obama and Democratic leaders. Speaker Boehner said he was encouraged by the president's willingness to seek common ground on bipartisan bills to address rising gas prices and remove government barriers to small business growth, including the JOBS Act introduced by Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and House Republicans yesterday. The Speaker and Sen. McConnell expressed hope that the positive meeting boosts prospects for action by the Democratic-controlled Senate and President Obama on the bipartisan jobs and energy bills passed by the Republican-led House. Following are video and text of Speaker Boehner's remarks:
"Good afternoon, everyone. We had a positive lunch at the White House today, and I think we discussed a number of areas where I believe there's common ground between the two political parties, particularly on jobs and on energy. And I'd like to think that some of the bipartisan bills that we've moved through the House will be taken up soon by Democrats over in the Senate.
"You know, during the State of the Union Address the president said that he was for an "all-of-the-above' national energy policy. House Republicans have been for an "all-of-the-above' national energy policy for about five years. And it's the same approach that his jobs council, in their annual report, supported as well.
"And so we offered to work with the president on some of those bipartisan bills, again, that have been passed in the House. The president believed that there were some areas where we could find common ground and frankly I was encouraged by that.
"We also discussed the JOBS Act -- the package of bipartisan bills that was introduced yesterday. The president was very optimistic about moving that bill through the House. And so frankly it was a very good lunch and I'm encouraged by the attitude and the tone that we had during the meeting."