Despite House Republicans’ recent failure to pass health care reform, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said Sunday that he is “very optimistic” about Obamacare being repealed and replaced in the near future.
Paul’s comments came after he spent the day golfing with President Donald Trump and White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney at Trump’s Washington, D.C.-area golf course, where the trio gathered to discuss a “variety of topics,” including health care reform, according to a White House pool report.
“I had a great time today with @realDonaldTrump and believe we are getting closer to an agreement on health care!” Paul wrote on Twitter following the outing.
I had a great time today with @realDonaldTrump and believe we are getting closer to an agreement on health care!
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) April 2, 2017
In comments to the White House press pool upon arriving back at the White House, Paul continued: “We had a great day with the president. Played some golf, and we talked, and we talked about a little bit of health care. I continue to be very optimistic that we are getting closer and closer to an agreement on repealing Obamacare.”
Earlier in the day, Trump took to his personal Twitter account to offer some hope to Republicans left disappointed by last month’s failed health care bill.
The president doubled down last week when he used his Twitter account to attack members of the House Freedom Caucus, the conservative wing of House Republicans, who opposed the AHCA because they said it didn’t go far enough to repeal Obamacare and didn’t fulfill the GOP’s promise to replace Obamacare with a market-based, consumer-centered solution.
The White House seemed to reiterate their anti-Freedom Caucus feelings when Dan Scavino, a senior White House aide, tweeted Saturday that Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), a leader in the Freedom Caucus, is a “liability” and needs to be challenged for his congressional seat in next year’s election.
Still, positive comments from Paul are a good sign for Republicans and conservatives. From its onset, the Kentucky senator opposed the AHCA for the same reasons that members of the Freedom Caucus cited. Paul even dubbed the bill “Obamacare Lite.”
Sunday’s gathering between Trump and Paul suggests that the president is serious about passing real health care reform.