Boehner: 'I Can Find Common Ground With the President'

By Melanie Arter | August 28, 2012 | 11:11am EDT

President Barack Obama, flanked by Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker John Boehner, on Sept. 8, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

( Speaking with reporters at a restaurant in Tampa, Fla., on Monday, House Speaker John Boehner said he can find "common ground" with President Barack Obama.

Boehner also recalled how he and the late Sen. Ted Kennedy "did an awful lot of good things together."

At a press lunch sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor, a reporter asked the Ohio Republican, “I’m wondering what your thoughts are if worse comes to worse and President Obama does win another term - what sort of mandate you see he would have and how you see his relations with Congress and what he could actually accomplish.”

“I have no doubts that if required, I can find common ground with the president,” Boehner said.

“We found an awful lot of common ground last year in attempting to solve our debt crisis. Unfortunately, the president lost his courage, but for those that know me and those who listened to me over the course of the last 30 days, I never give up, and I’d never given up on the president regardless of whose occupying that office,” he said.

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Obama is going to have “some big decisions” in his second term, Boehner said.

“There’s nobody more open to solving the problems facing our country than me. There’s nobody more transparent about what needs to be done, but it’s gonna be the president,” he said.

“I’m gonna do everything I can to solve the major challenges facing our country, and I’ll sit down with anyone on any side of the aisle,” Boehner said.

Boehner said he had a “long track record of working across the aisle with people like Ted Kennedy for God's sakes.”

“We did an awful lot of good things together. Why? Because while he had strong opinions, and I may have had strong opinions, we understood our job was to find some common ground, and it was common ground that we found,” he added.

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