Trump rejects reports of infighting among transition team over key appointments
US President-elect Donald Trump on Wednesday refuted reports of infighting among advisers in his transition team over key Cabinet appointments, saying a “very organised” process is taking place to select the finalists. “Very organised process taking place as I decide on Cabinet and many other positions. I am the only one who knows who the finalists are!” Trump said in a tweet.
Trump’s tweet came as media reported that differences have come up within his camp on finalising his Cabinet.
A week after Trump, 70, was elected in a historic election, the President-elect is yet to name a member of his Cabinet. So far, he has named Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus as his chief of staff and his campaign CEO Stephen Bannon as chief strategist.
The CNN reported that Trump’s son-in-law and close adviser Jared Kushner is at the centre of the “infighting” inside his transition team.
Trump has already replaced New Jersey Governor Chris Christie with Vice-President-elect Mike Pence as head of the transition team.
Christie was New Jersey attorney general when Kushner’s father was tried and jailed in the state for tax evasion, illegal campaign contributions and witness tampering in 2004.
The Wall Street Journal reported the Vice-President-elect Mike Pence had on Tuesday ordered the removal of all lobbyists from the transition team.
Former Congressman Mike Rogers, who was considered for the post of CIA Director, was among those ousted from the presidential transition team’s national security unit.
Rogers said he parted ways with Trump’s transition team, removing an establishment national security voice from the planning process of the next president’s cabinet. Rogers was told on Monday over phone that he was out, according to a source familiar with the transition. The source said it was part of an effort to replace the transition team members associated with Christie, who previously headed up the transition team’s efforts until being replaced by Pence.
“Sometimes in politics...there are people who are in and people who are out. And the people who have been asked to move on have some relationship with Chris Christie,” Rogers told CNN.
Pence had on Tuesday provided to the White House the necessary paper work that would facilitate smooth transition.
The Trump transition team must now provide the Obama administration with the “names of individuals they have authorised to represent the transition effort across the government”, Brandi Hoffine, a White House spokesperson said.
Consultations on Cabinet formation
US President-elect Donald Trump continues to engage in intensive discussions with his key aides and top Republican leadership on selecting members of his administration including those for the Cabinet.
There was no official word from the presidential transition team on the Cabinet formation, but several media outlets reported that former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani was being considered for the position of Secretary while Ben Carson, a former presidential aspirant, has refused to be part of the administration.
Among other names being floated around were that of Indian-American Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal as Secretary of Health, Alabama
Senator Jeff Sessions as Defense Secretary and Steven Mnuchin as the Treasury Secretary.
If nominated Jindal would be the first Indian-American in a presidential cabinet. His prospects have brightened after Carson withdrew his name.
Trump, 70, spent most part of the day in meeting with his vice president-elect Mike Pence and several other leaders including Senator Ted Cruz, his former rival in the Republican presidential primary. Pence spent nearly six hours in Trump Towers.
How will Don’s cabinet look like
- So far, Trump has named Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus as his chief of staff and his campaign CEO Stephen Bannon as chief strategist
- Trump has already replaced New Jersey Governor Chris Christie with Vice-President-elect Mike Pence as head of the transition team
- Several media outlets reported that former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani was being considered for the position of Secretary
- Among other names being floated around are that of Indian-American Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal as Secretary of Health, Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions as Defense Secretary and Steven Mnuchin as Treasury Secretary
- If nominated Jindal would be the first Indian-American in a Prez cabinet
Republican members of the US House of Representatives on Wednesday unanimously chose Paul Ryan to keep his job as Speaker, following their victory at the polls last week, the House GOP conference announced.
“It is a tremendous honour to be nominated by my colleagues to serve as Speaker of the House. Now it’s time to go big,” Ryan, a 46-year-old lawmaker from Wisconsin, tweeted after the closed-doors vote at the Capitol. Given that the Republicans maintain their majority in the House, Ryan’s re-election as speaker is essentially a foregone conclusion – unless another Republican decides to mount a surprise challenge come January.