COUNTDOWN TO INAUGURATION DAY (Jan. 20, 2017): 13 DAYS
President-elect Donald Trump was briefed by intelligence officials. The topic? The possible interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election by Russia and others. Trump has brushed off such allegations in the past. “While Russia, China, other countries, outside groups and people are consistently trying to break through the cyber infrastructure of our governmental institutions, businesses and organizations including the Democrat National Committee, there was absolutely no effect on the outcome of the election including the fact that there was no tampering whatsoever with voting machines. There were attempts to hack the Republican National Committee, but the RNC had strong hacking defenses and the hackers were unsuccessful,” Trump said in a statement released after the session.
Trump again tweeted about his controversial campaign promise to build a wall along the Mexican border, for which he has repeatedly said Mexico would foot the bill. Mexico has long said they won’t pay.
In somewhat lighter news, the President-elect sent a flurry of tweets aimed at Arnold Schwarzenegger, who took over Trump’s starring role in the long-running TV series, “The Apprentice.” Trump pulled no punches with his barbs directed at Schwarzenegger, Hillary Clinton and Democrats.
Trump also spoke with Florida Gov. Rick Scott in the aftermath of the deadly mass shooting at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.
STORIES THAT MATTERED MOST
LATEST SOCIAL MEDIA REACTION
Appointments and nominations made by the Donald Trump administration
WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: Reince Priebus
CHIEF STRATEGIST AND SENIOR COUNSELOR: Stephen K. Bannon
SECRETARY OF STATE: Rex Tillerson
SECRETARY OF TREASURY: Steve Mnuchin
SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: James Mattis
ATTORNEY GENERAL: Jeff Sessions
SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR: Ryan Zinke
SECRETARY OF COMMERCE: Wilbur Ross
SECRETARY OF LABOR: Andrew Puzder
SECRETARY OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES: Tom Price
SECRETARY OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT: Ben Carson
SECRETARY OF TRANSPORTATION: Elaine Chao
SECRETARY OF ENERGY: Rick Perry
SECRETARY OF EDUCATION: Betsy DeVos
SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY: John Kelly
NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: Michael T. Flynn
DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: Dan Coates
EPA ADMINISTRATOR: Scott Pruitt
CIA DIRECTOR: Mike Pompeo
U.N. AMBASSADOR: Nikki Haley
SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION HEAD: Linda McMahon
Senior White House leadership team, listed on Donald Trump’s official presidential transition website: Vice President-Elect Mike Pence as team chair, with Marsha Blackburn, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Mary Fallin, Newt Gingrich, Michael T. Flynn, Rudy Giuliani, Cynthia Lummis, Kathleen Troia “KT” McFarland, Tom Reed, Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Tim Scott, Jeff Sessions as vice chairs. The following have also been announced as joining the team’s executive committee: Stephen K. Bannon, Lou Barletta, Pam Bondi (currently Florida’s Attorney General), Chris Collins, Sean Duffy, Trey Gowdy, Jared Kushner, Tom Marino, John McEntee, Rebekah Mercer, Steven Mnuchin, Devin Nunes, Reince Priebus, Dennis Ross, Anthony Scaramucci, Darrell Scott, Kiron Skinner, Peter Thiel, Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump, and Ivanka Trump.
POSITIONS THAT REMAIN TO BE FILLED: Secretary of Agriculture, Secretary of Veterans Affairs.