Obama: Republicans Like Rand Paul Are "Encouraging," "Rand Is An Interesting Guy"

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President Obama had this to say about Republican Sen. Rand Paul: It "is encouraging that he wants to go to the south side of Chicago."

"I guarantee you that Senator Paul would be welcome there," he added.

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: The new plan, apparently of congressional Republicans, and this is progress, the new plan is to rebrand themselves as the party of the middle class. I'm not making this up. Our Republican leader in the Senate, as he was coming in after trying to block every single thing that we have done to strengthen the economy, starts looking at the job numbers and says, you know, it is getting better because we just got elected. [laughter]

And people are feeling more optimistic. [laughter] OK.

I didn't know that is how the economy works, but maybe. [laughter]

We will call some economists. [laughter]

We have a Republican congresswoman who says that she couldn't agree with you more that we need to be helping working moms and dads. That is good. That is progress. One Republican Senator wrote a policy memo saying that Republicans must define themselves as the party of the American worker and the party of higher wages. That is good. I am glad they feel that way.

Rand Paul -- he is an interesting guy. [laughter] No, he is. Rand Paul said that the Republican Party SHOULD show up on the south side of Chicago and shout at the top of its lungs that the GOP is the ticket to the middle class.

I think -- I think that is encouraging that he wants to go to the south side of Chicago. No, I want all -- I want parties to compete everywhere. I think that is a good thing.

I was just home on the south side of Chicago yesterday. [applause] and I guarantee you that Senator Paul would be welcome there. We are a friendly bunch. I mean, it is a little strange of people show up and just start shouting at the top of their logs, but we are friendly. It would be OK.

But I will say this. I'm encouraged that they are speaking about middle-class and speaking about wages. But there is this old saying. That you can't just talk the talk. you got a do what? you got to walk the walk.

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