hello. i'm wolf blitzer. 1:00 p.m. in washington. wherever you're watching from around the world, thanks very much for joining us. we start with new details on the transition of power here in washington. the makeup of president-elect donald trump's team. vice president-elect mike pence is leading the transition team in new york city right now over at trump tower, meeting wit president-elect. we could hear their choices for key cabinet folks as early as later today. right now, congressional republicans are gathering to
whether to stick with paul ryan. there have been questions, but that talk has died down. this comes in january. while the trump team looked ahead to makeup of their administration, president barack obama is in greece right now in his last planned overseas trip as president of the united states. in greece, the president spoke about what he thinks brought about the dramatic u.s. election results, and the danger it could bring. >> at times of significant stress people are going to be looking for something, and they don't always know exactly what it is that they're looking for, and they may opt for change. even if they're not entirely confident what that change will bring. we are going to have to guard against a rise in -- a prude
sort of nationalism or ethnic identity or tribalism that is built around an "us" and a "them." >> let's get back to the trump transition for a moment. somewhat surprising news, by the way, about dr. ben carson. apparently turning down a cabinet post. politics reporter sara murray is in new york city. sara, explain what happened with dr. ben carson who ran for the republican presidential nomination. didn't do that well and then became a strong is a supporter e donald trump. >> reporter: right. and what role he could potentially flay a donald trump administration, maybe health and human service, maybe the department of education? now we hear from those close to ben carson he's not interested in being a part of donald trump's administration, not planning to head to washington
and to the white house. what you're going to see is the fact that there's going to be a lot of push and pull for a number of these people when it comes to these positions. they have rallied behind candidates who appeared to have a long shot who is now the presidential-elect and a number have lucrative businesses and potential to make more money staying outside of the white house. so i do think you'll see a couple of instances like this, of people we maybe would have expected to see in a donald trump administration who don't end up making the leap. >> do we know what positions, specific cabinet positions, for example, and specific names they're focusing in these critically important meetings at trump tower today? >> reporter: an interesting meeting between donald trump and mike pence. of course, mike pence named to take over the transition last week and giving them an opportunity to both bring names to the table they want to focus on. my colleague dana bash noted mike pence, for instance, is a fan of tom cotton as potential defense secretary. sure to be one of the names mike pence is bringing to the table. as for donald trump, he wants to
talk about the education secretary, i'm told by a source on the transition team. names like michelle reed, eva moskowitz. also talking commerce secretary and throws outside the box notions for that. for instance, peter thiel. and sources pointed to steve mnuch mnuchin, and clear donald trump wants to include more names in the mix. for instance, jamie dimon as well as ben bernanke. i'm told by source close to the former federal reserve chairman, ben bernanke, he would not be interested in the position but gives you sense how donald trump and his advisers want to cast a large net. lure in people who weren't necessarily interested before. seeing it play out looking at the list of people they're talking about for secretary of state.
of course, rudy giuliani is on that list and interested in that position. advisers have mentioned him for that precision, but we're also seeing henry paulsen as a name donald trump wants to talk about today pap former treasury secretary, openly critical of donald trump. in fact, he wrote an op-ed saying he was voting for hillary clinton. i think part of what year seeing from the trump campaign, or from the trump transition effort, send a message they're willing to look at people critical of donald trump in the pafr and look outside the box from what we normally see for cabinet positions. >> critically important decisions indeed. thanks sara murray. and bring in david chalian, jackie kucinich, political analyst and molly bowles, for "the atlantic." these positions presumably could come fast now and so important. >> critically important. you heard president obama say that one of the things that
donald trump and president obama talked about in their oval office, how important it was to staff up the west wing, the closest advisers, obviously the cabinet officials and the most sort of national security economic positions that are important. it's not that long, wolf from now until january 20th. you want a team standing up, because donald trump is often an outsider to all of this. finding the right mix of people for him, for someone that doesn't have experience doing this i think makes it all the more. >> critically important decision and clearly mike pence is now in charge. the kr vice president-elect in charge of this transition. donald trump will have a huge say. he's the president. >> the assumption he's going to talk to every one of these people before they actually end up in that position. and they're contending, we're just starting to see this. some picks pushed back already. john bolton, his name floated. >> former u.s. ambassador to the u.n. during the bush administration.
>> and mentioned for secretary of state. and you've already seen rand paul, senator from kentucky saying he will do everything in this power to not have that happen. he is a defense hawk. >> senator rand will join us later in the hour. >> seeing that already. a give and take you're seeing they have to contend with within their own party let alone the democrats. >> molly what are you hearing? friction, all sorts of colorful descriptions. >> a lot of friction in part because his victory was so unexpected, people didn't have a chance to fight over the spoils beforehand. now everyone has suddenly jumped in. the divisions within the republican party that existed before exist and are xexasperatd today. signaled pointed coequals in the west wing, steve bannon and reince priebus, he wants a degree of internal conflict. mike pence, regular republican. congressional republican. someone who, i think, republicans look at and think, a
normal republican administration. but we can't say that just yet. the types of picks trump starts to make is going to signal whether he wants to be a much more sort of unorthodox figure along the lines of his campaign. >> it's really going to be fascinating 0 to see some of the names sara bandied about. some of these people were dedicated never trumpers. right? some of these names are democrats, obviously. watching the evolution from somebody who was committed to trump's defeat. especially if they're a republican, to then joining the administration would be an interesting thing and whether or not donald trump's team, as you said, power centers, feels that that's inviting trouble inside the close-knit group to bring in a never trumper, or that that is a breath of fresh air, into the inner circle. somebody who can speak sort of truth to power saying, no, i wasn't with you at the campaign. here's why. whether or not that kind of voice is welcome will be a tell tale sign.
>> through his adviser, dr. ben carson notifying us he really wasn't interested in taking a cabinet position. a lot of speculation since she a physician, maybe health and human service as good idea, but armstrong williams, longtime aide, he doesn't really want that job. it's way, way too complicated. >> wanted to be president. which sass to say -- he did run for president, which is a bigger job than hhs, but, yes. seems ben carson thinks he can do more from the periphery, was a very loyal donald trump supporter. one interesting thing to your point it will show an evolution of donald trump already if he does welcome in someone who may have been against him. this isn't someone known not hold grudges. to see that, probably a good sign for maybe some of the people a little nervous. >> and clear, molly, rudy giuliani, former new york city mayor really would like to be the secretary of state. john bolton, former u.s. ambassador, to like to be the
secretary of state. there are other names. bob corker, joining us, chairman of the senate foreign relations committee. his name thrown out. what are you hearing? >> all of those names and then some. everyone is on the table. republicans out of power so long, there are a whole lot of people waiting in the wings and because trump's campaign was so divisive, as jackie was saying, a lot of republicans opposed him. if there's anything we know about donald trump, he loves to humiliate and take vengeance on his enemies. the best way to do that, bring them in, all of those people who opposed him end up working for him? or the best way to do that, keep them out, freeze them out. only the people loyal and got on the train early get to come inside. i don't think we know that yet. >> a list we put up. five pictures and saw the former speaker newt gingrich on the list. he'd like to be the secretary of state, i'm sure. and richard haass, former state department official during the
bush administration, his name mentioned as well. >> as you noted, rudy giuliani basically publicly applied for the job yesterday when he was speaking to the "washington journal" gathering, that this is something he can envision himself in. if, indeed, giuliani is the pick. does this sound familiar? paid speeches and foreign ent entities that are clients of yours. issues we saw around the clinton foundation and hillary clinton as secretary of state, if rudy giuliani is the pick, i wonder if we'll revisit some of those issues because of his interests in the last several yes. >> his law firm and paid speaking engagements included foreign entities. >> without a doubt. and advised a lot, partner after leaving the mayoralty was all about. diseng tang maletanglemond it s. and fired up over a
potential pick of john bolton as the u.s. secretary of state. why he's calling a fellow republican a menace partly to blame for the rise of isis. senator paul standing by to join us live. and president obama on his final trip overseas delivering what he calls crude nationalism. details, when we come back.
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while president obama's successor president-elect trump while he selects his new cabinet, president obama is in greece. the president a little whiling a amited he was surprised by the election results. >> i still don't feel responsible for what the president-elect says or does, but i do feel a responsibility as president of the united states to make sure that i facilitate a good transition and i present to him as well as to the american people my best thinking, my best ideas about how you move the country forward. to speak out with respect to
areas where i think the republican party is wrong, but to pledge to work with him on those things that i think will advance the causes of security and prosperity, and justice, and inclusiveness in america. >> our white house correspondent michelle kaczynski is in athens, gris, now, traveling with the president. michelle, how is the president-elect donald trump perceived in greece? >> reporter: well, tonight, in fact, there are protests. not necessarily against donald trump, but these are left-wing protestors against american involvement in the middle east. but what greeks have been looking for for years, of course, has been stability. a resolution of their financial problems, and their debt crisis. i mean, that's still ongoing. and what greece has wanted is
for the u.s. to really plead its case with other european powers and with greeks, greece's creditors, to try to get them a good deal to relieve some of their debt. that's why president obama is on this trip partially. he's going to be speaking to, angela merkel and other european leaders in the next few days. so greeks see a new administration that has deeply divergent views with president obama as just more stability. they're hoping to try to get this debt deal done before donald trump assumes office. they're worried about his policies, his fiscal policies and also his policies towards europe. you know, on the trail donald trump repeatedly said he would back away from greece. he talked about the euro as being problematic for the united states, and being designed to be anti-u.s. so greeks are worried that donald trump isn't going to be the kind of ally that president
obama was as it tries to resolve its crisis. you know, while president obama has been here, even though it's only been a day, we've heard him talking about how greece's stability is european stability is global stability. that's what they want. they've prish appreciated presi obama's investmeolvement and do know what they're going to get from here on out. >> athens, greece a beautiful city indeed. thanks very much. bring back our panel. interesting today, david. you heard the president of the united states in athens at that news conference with the greek leader. again, very courageous to donald trump. >> i think barack obama has made clear that he sees part of his legacy almost, if you will, this smooth transition and this handoff. he does not want one iota questioned about how he handled this, he calls it the handing off of the ba toton to donald
trump. he wants aun questions to be on the trump side. he is very committed to this, said it publicly and does that not only for the benefit of the american people and his own reputati reputation, just like you learned in the campaign, some of the best ways to talk to donald trump, publicly, on television. i believe barack obama is doing that very publicly, trying to speak to donald trump and guide him through the process as well. >> and noted, seemed to suggest, what's going on here in the united states is going on elsewhere around the world. there are a lot of people who are not very happy. they want to see change. >> yeah. you've seen the backlash in the uk certainly. donald trump liked to compare his campaign to brexit. so this is -- i mean, everything would be gold, right? this election will have global implications just like breck it did. so i think that -- i think one of the things he's doing over there is telling these world leaders that are skittish, everything's going to be okay. going to be okay here, going to be okay here and we'll help lead
his new era coming out of the trump administration. >> sort of frustrating the president. some of his democratic allies when he hear him saying all of these positive, nice things, if it's good for donald trump, it will be good for the country. some democrats not very happy with that kind of talk. >> well, the democrats are so decimated at this point. they've lost power at every level. not in charge of either house of congress, didn't win the presidency as they 100% expected to do and face a real choice now in the immediate term the choice of leadership. more than that, they have to decide, like the republicans did eight years ago do they try to make donald trump is auctisucce president making him popular in the process or engage in a strategy of massive resistance and total ob obstruction in an attempt to hold out until they take power? obama clearly coming down on one side of this, also, as you said, trying to reassure other nations that this is not part of a wave
which a lot of trump allies would very much like it to be. they would like it to be the second one on the list after brexit and there are many european countries who have these right wing nationalists movement, could be the next to fall if he indeed start the trend. >> trying to figure out what happened, democrats. stunned, shocked, by the outcome of his presidential election here in the united states and now there are all sorts of views emerging. what do the democrats do next? >> a lot of republicans stunned and shocked also. >> fair to say donald trump was stunned. >> yes. not just democrats. to molly's point, clearly counting on a victory. they are going through a soul searching process now. they are going to have to find the lessons from this election and i don't think they've settled on what those lessons are. you'll see it play out in many ways. the chairman of the national democratic party. whether or not nancy pelosi is leader of the house democrats in the house.
different proxy bites for the larger conversation going inside the parties is now what is the postdemocratic party? how much of the party last eight years was simply unique to barack obama and how much is developing in what it can be beyond just one person for the future? >> and who will be the leader now? there isn't, after obama leaves, there isn't a leader of the democratic party. is it going to be elizabeth warren, bernie sanders, both making a play. or keith ellison, the democratic congressman from minnesota? really is that is up for grabs now. one thing you're hearing on one silver lining, i guess, you're hearing from democrats, trump's promise on transportation. saying they can work with him. so we'll see how that plays out. >> yet you have republicans vowing to work against him. paul ryan and mitch mcconnell, not interested in a big spending infrastructure plan. the first test for donald trump, get a first priority through a republican congress telling us very much who wears the pants.
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right now congressional republicans be behind closed doors on capitol hill holding a meeting trying to decide whether they will give paul ryan another term as speak heer of the house. there were signs he could face resistance keeping his position prior to the election but no one stepped up to challenge him. senior political reporter manu raju joins us from capitol hill
following the story closely. what are you hearing, manu, right now? >> reporter: a lot of applause, actually. this meeting is happening right behind me. behind these closed doors. a pep rally of sorts. a much different mood than we saw a month ago when republicans could barely say donald trump's now name rallying behind him, passing our "make america great" hats. and the head of the national congressional committee talking about the gains that republicans made, although they did lose some seats in the house races but not nearly enough to lose their house majority. now, they'll have at least probably 238 seats in the new congress. paul ryan is expected to be re-elected speaker here in just a few minutes, and speaking to reporters earlier today really talking about his optimism about work wig a trump administration. i asked him about any concerns that he had with the trump children running the trump
businesses, if that presented any conflict of interest, especially as we talk about possibly them getting security clearances. paul ryan downplayed any concerns. >> donald trump is a multibillionaire, successful businessman who has been so successful because he surrounded himself with good people. he is a man who created tens of thousands of jobs because he gets good advice from people surrounded about him. what's wrong with that? we are going to focus on doing a good job in congress, we're going to do everything we can to help him be as successful as he's going to be which i think he'll be a very successful president. an exciting agenda, and excited to get to work for the american people. >> reporter: paul ryan also downplaying concerns about steve bannon, the controversial top adviser for donald trump being named to that position in the white house, saying, i want to be worrying only about results.
this is a republican party that is trying to present, project a lot of unity. something we've not seen for a long time. this entire election cycle. the feeling, much different, of course, after last week's win. same time, democrats are reeling, republicans feeling pretty good. >> republicans seem to be pretty united. yesterday, the freedom caucus, upbeat about the speaker. no resistance to paul ryan continuing as speaker of the house. very different picture, though, emerging on the democratic leadership front. what are you hearing about that, manu? >> reporter: that's right. nancy pelosi, how democratic leader. wanted to move forward with a leadership election this thursday. to re-elect her. some members said we need to put the brakes on that and have more time to discuss what went wrong last week in the election results and as a result, agreed to delay those leadership elections until after thanksgiving. something that pelosi did not want to do but was essentially
forced to by her members. that could potential lly lead ta challenge for nancy pelosi. the congressman from ohio is considering a run against her. pelosi has a lot of support within her caucus. shows tension still remaining within the democratic caucus as it tries to figure out a way forward after last week's results. >> democrats trying to figure out what happened and where they go from here. manu, soon as you get the definitive word there, let us know. coming up, president-elect donald trump, a meeting now inside trump tower with vice president-elect mike pence who's in charge of the transition. they're deciding who will round out trump's cabinet. their decisions that could come literally at any moment now. who's on the short list, and what does each pick say about donald trump's white house? we'll discuss that and much more with senator rand paul. he's up on capitol hill. you see him right there. he'll join us live rght after this quick break.
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there are breaking news involving the new york city, former new york city mayor rudy giuliani. mentioned for several top kbt po cabinet posts. giuliani says he won't be the attorney general of the united states but isn't ruling out other positions lots of talk about hick potentially becoming the secretary of state. joining us now, new information. what are you hearing? >> reporter: well, even as early as yesterday and this morning, wolf, reading about rudy giuliani raying out a foreign policy vision, perhaps tilting his hand as being the next secretary of state, but sources
familiar with some of the transition talks going on within the president-elect trump's transition team are saying that now that rudy giuliani's prior business ties to international countries, international firms, could pose a problem, and obviously, some of these candidates are being vetted right now, this is one of the things that they're looking at. in particular, i'm hearing that some of the lobbying that a law firm based in houston did for citgo. you know, the u.s. sub sisidiarf the venezuelan is something they're talking about. president-elect trump talking about draining the swamp, critical of ties to the clinton foundation and foreign governments. obviously, the president-elect wants to be very careful about the team he's putting in. he's in type of controversies are not old for rudy giuliani.
remember when he ran for president in 2008, his firm giuliani partners came under scrutiny for some of its advising and contacts it took from the government of qatar. certainly all of these international dealings that rudy giuliani, the former mayor of new york, has done since he left office are going to be raising a lot of eyebrows and certainly a concern as they move forward for the confirmation of a top u.s. diplomat, wolf. >> all right. sure there's a lot of vetting going on now. thank you very much. reaction to this and more. u.s. senator rand paul is joining us. he's the republican senator from kentucky. a member of the foreign reses committee and homeland security committee. senator, thanks so much for joining us. >> thanks for having me, wolf. >> what's your reaction to what was just reported about rudy giuliani? former new york mayor. do you think he would be a good secretary of state? >> worrisome, ties to foreign
governments. concern for many of us about hillary clinton and he ties and money received from foreign governments. this is very important. more important than that is i think trump should pick a secretary of state that agrees with his foreign policy. the thing donald trump said over and over again was that he was opposed to the iraq war. he learned that lesson that regime change in the middle east was not a good idea. yet i don't see giuliani coming out with statements like that. i certainly don't see john bolton. both have been big cheerleaders for the iraq war and more intervention in the middle east. i hope donald trump will pick someone consistent with what he said on the campaign trail. iraq war was a mistake. have regime change in the middle east is a miss take. >> you've written sharp words criticizing him. would you go so far as to vote not to confirm him as secretary
of state if president-elect trump goes ahead and nominates him? >> i couldn't vote for bolton unless we repudiated his vote for war in the middle east, and lead change in the middle east. you want a diplomat in charge of diplomacy. not a bomb thrower. so, no. john bolton's totally unfit to be secretary of state, and i hope that the trump administration will say, you know what? he does not represent what donald trump represents which is change. and which is the understanding, the iraq war was a mistake, and that regime change in the middle east has been a mistake. >> rudy giuliani. what about him? would you vote to confirm him? i. >> i think it's less clear. giuliani shares most of john bolton's statements towards iran, towards the iraq war. a stiff uphill climb for me with giuliani. he'd have to convince me he understands now the iraq war was
a mistake and never heard anything like that coming from him. giuliani and bolton are similar. bolton has a more extensive khmer leading background with regard to the middle east. >> other names we've heard. newt gingrich, richard haass, counsel on foreign relations. your colleague, bob corker, quickly give me your thoughts on them. >> any of them would be better than giuliani or bolton. i know bob corker well. he's not in exactly the same place i am on foreign policy but i would call him a realist, a reasonable person. i would call him a person who would seek peace as a first option rather than war. a steady hand. somebody who has, you know is thoughtful and so, yeah. corker would be way better than either giuliani or bolton, and if they feel they have to give giuliani a position, give him a position that doesn't put him in direct conflict with everything
that trump has said. he could be somewhere, but just don't put him in a position that would be in direct conflict to donald trump saying 1,000 times on the campaign trail he was against the iraq war. >> we've heard potential intelligence chief names thrown out there. let me put a few up on the screen. retired lieutenant general michael flynn. navy national security advisers to have pred in the white house. former head of d.i.a. defense intelligence agency. and ron burgess director of national intelligence, pete hoekstra, cia director. are you familiar with them? >> yeah. i know all the names. i don't know them personally, but my question to anybody that wants to be in charge of our intelligence would be, will you defend the fourth amendment? defend the american citizen's right to privacy? and will you try to do a better job searching for records of terrorists and less of a generalized sweep of all of our records?
the one common theme to every just virtually every domestic terrorist attack has been that they've been invoeft gated by the fbi before the attack and the fbi has said, oh, they wan credible threat. i think the fbi needs to reformat, reboot and recharge how they do investigations. they need to be kept open longer and investigate terrorists. he'll for whom they have suspicion and not grabbing up the records of all innocent american citizens. >> you've heard reports the president-elect is thinking of maybe asking the intelligence community to give top secret security clearances to his adult children, his son-in-law jared kushner. certainly emerged as a key adviser. would you have a problem with that? >> you know i think you have to look at individuals. just because they're related to someone doesn't make them ineligible for taking a high position. so, you know, john kennedy had robert kennedy in his cabinet. i think we have seen people appoint people from their family. we've never seen children, but
i'm not going to say it's automatically excluding them. i think it depends on what they stand for, who they are and they would have to be analyzed in that fashion, but i wouldn't make a, just a comment saying, no. i think we ought to look at the facts. >> one final question, senator, before i let you go. what do you think of steve bannon, the president-elect named him senior, a counsel at the white house, senior adviser? what do you think of him? >> i think there's a lot of sour grapes out there. after people lose the election, they're pointing fingers, wanting to make him into a caricature. i've met him. i don't think he's a caricature of any of these horrible things the left is bringing out about him. i don't believe him to be a racist. i don't believe him to be anyone who categorizes anybody based on their race or otherwise, or their religion. i think that that's a lot of just sour grapes. give the guy a chance. see how he performs, and really, i think it's the results we should look at. look what he says where he is going, moving forward and judge
that, but let's don't make him in a caricature because people aren't happy about the election. >> senator, thanks so much for joining us. >> thanks, wolf. >> senator rand paul of kentucky. more on the trump transition coming up and details on potential picks. what could shape the president-elect's choices? looking at like pictures of trump tower, fifth avenue, new york city. we'll be right there. ♪ approaching medicare eligibility? you may think you can put off checking out your medicare options until you're sixty-five,
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let's get back to our panel. david chalian is still with us, jackie kucinich, moll lee ball is with us, senior political writer for the "atlantic" and retired u.s. army brigadier general mark kim met. general kimmet, you're hearing names for secretary of defense, national security advisor, cia security director, national intelligence director, what is your analysis of the names coming out? >> at this point i think we're seeing good names, people that have a lot of experience that the foreign policy field, people that understand the middle east, people that understand putting american troops on the ground. i think that's a prerequisite for the advisors that will
surround any president-elect. >> rudy giuliani, does he have what it takes to be a secretary of state? >> well, i'm not going to comment on any particular person. it seems from my area, the middle east, he has a good understanding of the issues at hand and he's very much in line with president-elect trump in terms of how he sees how we can improve the atrocious situation we have in the middle east right now. what about retired lieutenant governor michael flynn, former head of the defense intelligence agency who's widely been speculated to become the president's national security advisor. >> we've had a number of generals in the past. brent scowcroft, jim jones, they bring to the job the understanding of how to bring the department of defense and the department of state into the conversation to give the best advice to the president and i'm
certain general flynn would be able to do that. >> and colin powell, let's not forget, he was chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, then became a national security advis advisor. david chalian, these decisions that the president-elect makes between now and when he's sworn in, they will have an impact four years and eight years. >> no doubt. it's the formulation of your policy making apparatus. obviously it's not permanent. we see people lose their jobs or new people come in and these jobs can change. but it's the first significant indication we get about how donald trump plans to governor so when we look at his national security picks, you heard rand paul pushing back against john bolton because it gives him a clue about how things may proceed in a trump administration so that's what we assess and why these initial picks are so important.
>> and particularly for a trump administration because this is someone that doesn't have a record as a politician or military leader going back like we've seen with presidents before him. so this will give us an indication of where he plans to go because we don't know where he's been. >> it was interesting to hear senator rand paul say to the president -- he was talking to us, talking to the world but he was also talking the president-elect trump who says "pick someone who thinks the iraq war was a disaster, pick one slyke you who thinks removing qaddafi was a disaster, pick one like you who thinks the regime change has been a disaster. that was a strong message he was sending to the president-elect. >> very unambiguous. trump has no record in office that gives us a sense of his inclination, he's said so many conflicting things on the campaign trail. he didn't formulate a big sheaf of foreign policy white papers on his web site. he'd say one thing on the stump
and say the mutually exclusive thing at the same time which enabled people to hear whatever they wanted to out of his rhetoric so people like rand paul heard trump talk and say, okay, he's a non-interventionist like me. other people heard him say "we're going to bomb the you know what out of isis" and they think okay, he's like john bolton, he wants massive military might. as david was saying, this is the most important first signal we'll get about what -- when the rubber hits the road when trump has to make policy and can't say what everybody wants to hear what is the direction he wants to go? >> general kimmitt, almost every speech, almost every rally we heard from trump he railed against the iran nuclear deal, saying it was a disaster, billions of dollars in cash flowing to iran. now that he'll be the president of the united states, can he unilaterally eliminate it, remove it, say it's over? >> first of all, i think what he's been saying recently is
that he is going to abide by it but he's going to make sure it's enforced. as recently as today the iranians have violated the terms of the agreement by overproducing their heavy water. i don't think that a president trump is going to sit back and allow the terms of the agreement to be violated, to draw a red line that won't be crossed. what you'll see as a president in the middle east that will show resolve, consistency and tack back to the traditional allies that you have. >> it's interesting he did have a phone call, david, with putin yesterday and apparently it was a pretty smooth call. >> and it was a clear elbow to the obama administration as well in the readout of that call that they both committed to better relations, admitting relations between the two countries are off course. >> we have breaking news coming in from capitol hill right now. let's go to manu raju. manu, can you hear me?
we understand you have the final word on the future of the speaker of the house. >> that's right. paul ryan will be the next speaker of the house. the house republican conference just nominated paul ryan in a unanimous voice vote. we are told by sources in the room who said he was overwhelmingly supported by his republican conference. this is one step for him to be reelected speaker, this is the nomination vote, so each side puts up its nominee for speaker and republicans, since they will be in the house -- in the majority and the new congress it means that ryan will be the speaker of the house. this was the nomination vote in january, it will be the full vote in the house of representatives. now that vote on the floor, paul ryan can lose no more than 20 votes or so, wolf. right now republicans are expected to have 238 votes on the floor in the chamber next congress at least. they may have a few more because some races are outstanding. he can't lose more than 20 votes on the house floor and that's
not going to happen i'm told it's a unified conference even though there was some dissension but he was nominated by one member of the house freedom caucus today that issi inmick mulvaney as well as chris collins, a long-time trump supporter and paul ryan's position over donald trump caused consternation among trump's supporters but ryan has moved to alleviate those concerns, he's embraced trump sar tightly in the last couple weeks, he's working with them closely as well during this transition period after the big win when they kept control of the house and senate majority. winning back the white house. wanting to hit the ground running in a new administration. paul ryan not facing push back. a much different feeling here than it was a month ago when i looked like paul ryan could face challenge from the right. we are hearing this vote has concluded, paul ryan chosen by
his colleagues to be the speaker of the house by a voice vote suggesting not a lot of dissension among his colleagues. >> sounds unanimous, we have a tweet that paul ryan just released. there you see it right there. "it's a tremendous honor to be nominated by my colleagues to serve as speaker of the house. now it's time to go big." david chalian, when he says "go big" what does that mean day one, day two, day three with the new president. >> i'm surprised he didn't say go bigley and use the trump term because it's largely due to donald trump's election as president that paul ryan was able to be nominated by his conference. donald trump's election gave paul ryan breathing room not only to put together what he needed to do in the conference to have this nomination but to give himself some running room with the start of the new congress. if the election had gone the other way, i think the republicans would have been much more divisive. >> he wanted to say big league but he's limited to 140
characters. what's your reaction when you hear the unanimity among republicans. >> i agree with david. trump's election. there were a few people in there who thought ryan separating himself hurt his chances. now that that's not an issue, paul ryan is the person they want to see go forward. no one can make a case because he kept that house that he shouldn't be. so blessing and a curse. >> winning concentrates the mind. all of these freedom caucus members who were so troublesome when they were in the minority, all of a sudden they're on board. however what's really going to be the issue is when there is policy to be passed. you have a republican congress whose agenda may be at odds with a president trump and republicans think they can roll trump. they think because they know the
system they can call the shots, we shall see who's in charge. >> and what's interesting is republicans moved quickly on their leadership front. democrats not so quickly. thanks very much. that's it for me. see you back here 5:00 p.m. east american the situation room. the news continues right now, right here on cnn. [ muted ]. white house positions is a quote/unquote knife fight. another source called it like the game of lens to and now you have the vice president-elect mike pence. he is now inside trump tower for the day, he has entered the proverbial fray, officially leading the transition team