Boehner: 'I’m optimistic' about Obama's outreach to GOP

A day after taking a group of Republican senators out to dinner, Obama is having lunch on Thursday with Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), the House GOP budget chief and the 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee.

Next week, the president will visit the Capitol to meet with both the Democratic and Republican caucuses in the House and Senate, which he has not done in at least three years.

Boehner marveled at the charm offensive, which many Republicans view as concession that the president’s effort to pummel Republicans in the sequester battle was a failure.

The GOP has complained for years that, aside from secret negotiations with Boehner, Obama has made little effort to court Republicans and solicit their views.

“You know, we went through months of campaign-style events all over the country, and I did have a conversation with the president about it last Friday,” the Speaker said, smiling. “It was really kind of interesting that this week we’ve gone 180. After being in office now for four years, he’s going to actually sit down and talk to members.”

With Boehner and Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) adamantly opposing Obama’s push for more tax revenue in a deficit-reduction deal, the president has sought to go around the leadership to find what he has termed “a caucus of common sense.”

For more on Boehner's remarks, click here.