Paul Ryan Not Sold On Obama Charm Offensive

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) isn’t completely sold on President Obama’s recent outreach to congressional Republicans.

“The question is, is he going to go out on the campaign trail and start campaigning against us again like he has been since the election?” Ryan said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “Was the so-called charm offensive a temporary, you know, poll-driven political calculation, or was it a sincere conversion to try and bring people together and start communicating? I hope that that’s the case.”

Obama, Ryan and Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) had lunch last week at the White House. And Obama is scheduled to meet with congressional Republicans Wednesday on Capitol hill.

Ryan described his recent conversation with the President as “very, very frank,” but said differences remain. “Look, I ran against him, so we have different views. But at least we started talking. This is the first time I ever had a conversation like that with him. So I think that’s a good, constructive start. The question is, is there follow through? The question is, does the campaign start back up or does the engagement continue in a real, constructive and promising way? I don’t know the answer to that question. Time will tell.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

David Taintor is a news editor at Talking Points Memo. Previously, he worked at NBC News and Adweek. He's a native of Minnesota. Reach him at taintor@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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