Pence sends a message to McConnell, Paul on health care in their own backyard

Story highlights

  • Vice President Mike Pence continues his tour selling White House policy
  • Pence praised Senators Rand Paul and Mitch McConnell

(CNN)"Help is on the way!" Vice President Mike Pence declared to small-business owners at a roundtable in Kentucky as he spoke about the adverse effects of Obamacare.

Pence hit the road once again on Wednesday to promote the Trump administration's agenda. It's a seat that he's comfortable in: traveling to politically important states and selling health care on behalf of the administration, something he's been doing since the spring.
While the president had no public events on Wednesday, the vice president traveled to Kentucky, a state that voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump in the election, for a roundtable listening session, a speech, and a private reception in Lexington.
    Pence boldly promised the crowd that the administration and Congress would repeal and replace Obamacare "before the summer's out."

    Praise for Paul and McConnell

    While Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has openly criticized the Republican Senate bill to repeal and replace Obamacare -- coming out as a no after seeing the first draft of the bill -- Pence insisted on Wednesday that the two get along.
    "Let me say from my heart, the President and I really like Senator Rand Paul. Senator Rand Paul is a great conservative and a great legislator and he does Kentucky proud," Pence said from the podium.
    He also lauded the state's other senator -- and Senate Majority Leader -- Mitch McConnell, saying that he and Trump "couldn't be more grateful" for his leadership, adding that "he's doing a great job."
    In a political move, Pence placed blame on Democrats for obstructing the path toward reforming the health care policy.
    "I mean, Democrats in Congress would rather let Obamacare implode than admit their mistake and help Republican majorities rescue the American people."
    Toward the end of his remarks, Pence sent a clear message to the two senators.
    "When the time comes, Senator Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul will do the right thing together and we will pass legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare," the vice president declared.