tv CNN Newsroom With Carol Costello CNN January 19, 2017 6:00am-7:01am PST
things got going. as things went on and as i was involved with travel with him, she saw a different thing and she came to me one time, we were just kind of sitting there, and she said, i have paid attention and agree with how you feel about mr. trump. >> coach knight, thanks so much for being with us here on "new day." >> thank you. i appreciate the opportunity to talk about mr. trump because i think he is going to be exceptional when it comes to what we as americans need. >> we will see. the future begins tomorrow. >> that does it for us. we'll see you tomorrow morning at 5:00 a.m. eastern. >> "newsroom" with carol costello begins right now. >> thank you very much. "newsroom" does start right now.
good morning and thank you very much so much for joining me from wad. beautiful city. i'm carol costello. the president-elect leaves new york on a military jet bound for washington. he's among hundreds of thousands streaming into the capitol for tomorrow's inauguration, some to celebrate, others to protest. minutes from now, sean spicer will deliver his first on camera briefing. we'll bring it to you live. also this hour, another round of hearings, first up former texas governor rick perry, trump's pick to lead the energy department. and then steve mnuchin, the nominee for secretary of treasury. the wall street veteran will be grilled over his personal dealings and the fiscal policies of a trump white house. cnn's sunlen serfaty is on capitol hill, but let's begin with jason carroll outside trump tower in new york. good morning, jason. >> reporter: good morning, carol. the prerkt will be heading your way very soon. he has a packed day ahead of him
with three inaugural events starting about 2:45 where he'll attend a wreath laying ceremony at arlington national cemetery. at 4:00, he'll be attending a make america great again concert, expected to make some remarks there. at 7:30 tonight, he'll be attending a candlelight dinner. that's going to be at union station. looking forward, once trump does take office and is sworn in, one of their first orders of duty will be to begin repealing and, as mike pence says, replacing obamacare. >> i think you can expect a president donald trump will hit the ground running. in the first week, putting executive orders into place, repealing some executive orders and continue to work very energetically with the congress to repeal and replace obamacare. >> reporter: we've heard him say
repeal and replace many, many times before. we've heard the president-elect say it many times in the past. what's unclear, carol, is specifically what they intend to replace it with. although mike pence says they will be coming up with that plan very soon. looking ahead to the president-elect's inaugural speech, it will touch on a few different themes, first creating jobs, also defeating terrorism and touching on america's shared values. carol? >> all right, jason carroll reporting live from trump tower in new york city, thanks so much. in minutes the hearings continue on capitol hill. more of donald trump's cabinet picks facing a grilling from lawmakers. first up, as i said, energy secretary nominee rick perry. that will happen in about 20 minutes. then trump's treasury pick steve mnuchin is on the hot seat at 10:00 a.m. sunlen serfaty is following this for us from are capitol hill. good morning. >> reporter: good morning.
another big day on capitol hill for the incoming trump administration, this after four key confirmation hearings yesterday where we saw trump's pick for health and human services secretary tom price questioned over these allegations of insider trading, his investments and clearly his intentions put on the spot by senator elizabeth warren. >> did you buy the stock and then did you introduce a bill that would be helpful to the companies you just bought stock in? >> the stock was bought by a broker who was making that decisions. i knew nothing about those. >> you couldn't have a diversified portfolio while staying clear of the six companies directly affected by your work on that issue? >> as i said, i didn't have any knowledge of those purchases. >> reporter: in another hearing trump's pick to head the epa scott pruitt was grilled on his views on climate change breaking with future boss donald trump saying he doesn't believe that climate change is a hoax.
>> why is the claim mat changing? >> senator, in response to the co2 issue, the epa administrator is constrained by statutes -- >> i'm asking you a personal opinion. >> my personal opinion is immaterial. >> really? >> to the job of -- >> you are going to be the head of the agency to protect the environment and your personal feelings ability whether climate change is caused by human activity and carbon emissions is immaterial? >> senator, i've acknowledged to you that the human activity impacts -- >> impacts. yes. >> reporter: today two more confirmation hearings, rick perry to be energy secretary and steve mnuchin to be treasury secretary. later today we do expect president-elect donald trump to nominate former georgia governor sonny purdue to be his pick for agriculture department. this marks the final pick of the
trump cabinet. >> sunlen serfaty live from capitol hill. with me to talk about this, cnn correspondent phil mattingly and former pennsylvania governor rick santorum. director of media and public affairs, frank sesno and cnn political commentator. i'll start with you, rick. are you ready? >> i'm ready. >> so mr. trump's cabinet picks have what used to be debilitating problems. i'll give you a few examples. betsy devos, concern about lack of knowledge. tom price pushed a bill that helped a company he owns stock in. the man up for budget director neglected to pay taxes for a household employee. is this the change america wants? >> we had tim geithner in the same situation -- >> but donald trump says he wants to drain the swamp. >> i know you're going to be surprised at this.
very few people are perfect and don't have little things in thash lives -- >> lacking a base of knowledge -- >> betsy devos is not an education expert, but what she is an education reform crusader and has done an amazing job in pushing for the principle thing that donald trump wants to do, which is give young children, particularly poor children the opportunity to get a quality education. no one can question whether betsy devos has had her heart, her soul, and by the way her money to make that happen. i don't see why that is a disqualifier, that she's not an educational professional. >> marie, i'll pose this question to you. governor perry wants to be energy secretary. according to "the new york times" mr. perry thought he was going to be the ambassador for the american oil and gas industry back when he forgot the name of the energy department. this is from the new york times, quote, in the days after mr. perry, the former texas governor discovered he would be no such
thing, an ambassador for the oil industry, that, in fact, if confirmed by the senate he would become a steward of a vast national security complex he knew almost nothing about, caring for the most fear some weapons on the planet, the nuclear arsenal. >> i do think it's a concern. it's a concern mainly because what we have heard the trump team say over and over again in the face of having a president-elect who is really an expert about nothing when it comes to government and policy making, they kept saying he's going to surround himself with the best people that have the best knowledge about all of these things that affect the american people. and what we have been learning is that the people that he has picked as his cabinet have nothing of the sort. when you have people that are going to deal with the day-to-day issues that will affect american families, it is a huge concern. rick perry not only does not know what the energy department did, not only did he forget it was one of the departments he
wanted to eliminate it, he wanted to eliminate it. >> he does say now that regrets saying that. >> of course. that's an easy thing to say. i'm sure he will say that today. look, a lot of people coming to these jobs with a learning curve. so that is not as much of a concern. but the bigger concern is you have a president-elect with a huge learning curve and then you have all these people who were supposed to be the people that were going to surround the president-elect as policy experts with a huge learning curve as well. >> let me put it to you this way. mr. trump wants change. he wants to bring in people who will shake things up. perhaps some of these people will do exactly that. so what's wrong with that? >> nothing. that's what he ran on. that's what he promised to do. that's what people voted for him to do. if you look at these candidates, there are legitimate questions about their personal backgrounds, their financial backgrounds, whether they paid taxes, whether they fired a domestic worker or not. there are legitimate questions about their level of expertise. what they are projecting through the hearings as well is they
really do have a different approach to things, and we shouldn't lose sight of the effect of that. they want to turn the responsibility of this wonderful city back to the states. they bloo evidence the states should be driving policy more. they believe less in top-down regulation. they believe more in highlighting if they fall in line with donald trump, more about jobs and individual responsibility. so that's a very big part of where they're coming from. we've had plenty of people who have been brought into these jobs with great expertise who failed and others who have been clueless who have succeeded and failed, too. it's a mix. i think that's what we're seeing now. >> i know you have new reporting on steve mnuchin, the guy up for treasury secretary. there are concerns about him, too. >> a lot of concerns. when you talk to republicans, there's no question they've had wounded nominees going forward. because of the dynamics on play an capitol hill, because democrats don't have enough on their own to block anybody, all these nominees are expected to make their way through.
>> so you think at least six nominees will be confirmed by inauguration day? >> that's another interesting behind the scenes directive. steve mnuchin is the individual they've been most concerned about. for a couple of reasons. first off, his background, kind of a long convoluted story, but a bank her purchased in the midst of the financial crisis which had one of the worst mortgage portfolios in the business, a terrible moment pour the country, terrible moment in the housing market. that bank was forced to foreclose without some of the promised modifications they say they would make on a number of different individuals. a lot of those individuals have come up, talked about how they were abused about this process, made a lot of allegations about how the bank operated. democrats have seized on that and see they have a winning argument here. they brought some of those individuals up to capitol hill yesterday. the bigger issue with steve mnuchin is nobody is really sure he's ready for what's about to happen today. he's a very mild-mannered individual. the one-on-one meetings, i've been told he's had with
senators, have not been positive. flip that on his head. rex tillerson has had meetings that were sensational. democrats have said that as well. if any one nominee is going to be sunk, it could be steve mnuchin if he doesn't handle himself well today. that's not coming from democrats. that's coming from republicans and individuals inside the transition. but to your point, behind the scenes, what's going on right now, there's negotiations, republicans want to get as many cabinet officials through on the first day of president trump's administration. 2009 president obama had seven nominations through. this is important you want them to start moving the administration for frd. here is the state of play right now. democrats, because they're uncomfortable with a lot of nominees and because they don't have power to stop them, their only leverage is to try to draw out the process. as it currently stands, negotiations going behind the scenes, three are expected to move non-continue versely, mime
pompeo at cia, john kelly at homeland security, james mattis at defense. what republicans want is more, and what they say they deserve because of 2009 is more. what democrats want, in order to let that actually happen, they want more documentation from some of the remaining controversial nominees. they want more hearing time for some of the remaining controversial nominees. there are other non-controversial nominees that could move on friday, but democrats want something in return. frankly they don't have any other leverage at this point, carol. >> besides the political play, because that's what this is, rick, what's wrong with wanting more documentation? if there are all these problems with these nominees, what's wrong with that? isn't that for the good of the american people? >> i think they should release the documentation. there's clearly some evidence that has not been made public that needs to be made public. their financial disclosure forms, that has to be done. republicans have no beef in some of the things the democrats are talking about. they may not get six, they may not get seven.
they may only get three or four. i think we do need to move this process forward. unlike maybe previous administrations coming anywhere they were prepared, they thought they were going to win, they had everything -- that's really not been as much the case here, and i think they're waiting for a lot of these secretaries to get in so they can start filling in the rest of the cabinet. before that wasn't the case. we are actually slowing down the transition by not putting some of these people, con i remember iffing these folks at the top of the departments. >> we have to leave this conversation here. i want you to stick around because we have a whole lot more to talk about. stay with us. also coming up right now we have new news on the national security front. u.s. bombers strike isis training camps in libya is what is likely to be the last military action of president obama's final hours in office. cnn's barbara starr is working her sources this morning at the pentagon. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, carol. these are the types of military operations, very short notice, that could come to donald
trump's desk in the oval office right away as soon as he takes office. president obama authorizing this series of air strikes overnight in libya killing it is now estimated perhaps over 80 isis fighters in training camps about 45 miles south of the city of sirte. sirte on the libyan coastline had been the isis stronghold. it had been bombed by the u.s. over the months. they believe many fighters, several dozen had fled south. now the u.s. taking action, sending b2 bombers, heavy bombers from the united states to strike those targets overnight. this is really one of the last indications of the obama military policy. relying on aircraft drones and in some cases special forces on the ground to go after terrorists and especially isis targets. again, it's the type of thing that is going to come to donald trump's desk because there is an unfinished list.
topping that unfinished list of course is trying to find the isis leader, al baghdadi, the u.s. has gn tracking him. u.s. special operations have had as we have reported a number of tips about his locations over the last several weeks. we don't know if they'll get him in the final hours of the obama administration. if they do not, they will keep looking for him, and that is going to be one very big decision coming to president trump. carol? >> all right, barbara starr reporting live from the pentagon. many thanks. an estimated 200,000 women are expected to take part in the women's march in washington on saturday. women across the country, actually women around the world, holding marches in their states and countries, said to be the largest in history. in my op ed i explore the state of sisterhood. be sure to check it out.
cnn.com/opinion. also still to come in the "newsroom," we are on top of a busy morning in washington. the incoming white house press secretary delivering his first briefing in just moments, and trump's energy secretary pick in the hot seat. we're on top of all of it for you. you. we'll be back. birds eye voila so veggie good
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we are moments away from the opening bell, and one day until donald trump takes office. how is the market reacting to that? let's head to new york and christine romans. good morning. >> reporter: hi, carol, i'm right here next to you. >> you're in d.c.? you made it. >> reporter: i did. everything happening behind me. these hearings will direct the direction of -- direct the direction of what we hear from steve mnuchin, the treasury nominee. i have a quiz for you because it is inauguration week. a little presidential quiz. how does the stock market rally under donald trump compare with other election day to inauguration to stock market inauguration rallies. he has more than 6.5% gain in stocks since donald trump was elected. you can see where he fits in, john kennedy 8.8% or herbert hoover at 10%.
colvin coolidge had the biggest bump post election. donald trump -- this trump rally has been impressive, better than recent presidents. that's where it stands in terms of history. there you go. there's your cocktail party trivia for tonight, carol. let me show you what global markets are doing as we wait for the stock market to open. dow futures are down a little bit. i feel as though there's a little bit of a ceiling on the trump rally as we wait to see who gets in his cabinet, how they do today, particularly the treasury nominee. quite frankly, when policies begin. london down, paris down, tokyo closed up a little bit and oil is up about 1%. carol, back to you. >> i was looking at your bump numbers and i was wondering, doesn't that really show that a pump means absolutely nothing? >> reporter: well, what happens from here is what's important. now it's the show me the money phase. we've had the rally. show us the policies. >> christine romans thanks so
much. >> reporter: he's from iowa, be nice to herbert hoover. >> i'm sorry. i didn't mean to be cruel. christine romans, thanks so much. any minute we'll get the first briefing from sean spicer, the man donald trump has tapped to be his white house press secretary. these are live pictures from the trump transition headquarters where spicer will speak to reporters. today's event comes after spicer announced monday's briefing will be held in the white house after all. team trump floated the idea of moving the press out of the west wing where they have been stationed since 1970 to accommodate, quote, massive demand. where me to talk about that and more phil mattingly, frank sesno, malia cardona. why is sean spicer holding the press conference today? >> this is the process, this is transition into reality which is tomorrow. what's the most interesting thing, come to the white house for a year in a prior organization, in understanding
and talking to the obama guys leaving right now, you need to get your head around the rhythms of things, the most basic protocols, how briefings work, how getting to marine one takes off, when the absolute happen, all that type of stuff. i think this is the final move to transition your way adequately into the white house. i think this is sean's role. from here on out, sean spicer will be the public face of the administration, wherever he decides to hold his brief innings. every day he gets to do this is an opportunity to settle into that role. it's a different thing holding a briefing call, which the transition team has been doing on a daily basis since they won the election, and those have been helpful, than it is standing in front of reporters with live cameras answering questions that could come from absolutely anywhere about absolutely anything. that's what you're seeing today. you're seeing that all over from the trump team, the transition team, trying to finalize what becomes very real tomorrow. >> let's talk about this massive
demand which means president-elect trump will invite other entities into the briefing, especially when he holds his own briefing. who do you suppose he means by inviting other entities in? >> anybody that wants to come. he means bloggers, talk show hosts, he means people from breitbart news. there will be an entirely different dynamic in that press room. i was fascinated, having covered presidents myself, at the news conference that he held with 250 reporters in the room when there was applause when he walked in. there was an audience for that. >> that is strange. >> it's important that the white house press corps who cover the president remain in that building. that's is something that drives the dynamic, drives accountability. >> let me ask you this, and i'll get to you two in a moment -- >> you have to wait your turn. >> been at this a long time. >> so if you invite talk show hosts into the briefings, doesn't that elevate them to the
same level as independent journalists? >> it could be confusing. one of the things confusing about media when you put commentators next to reporters. are reporters reporting the facts or are they commentators. >> putting bill o'reilly and wolf blitzer on the same plane. >> i want to see that conversation. >> i do, too. bill press has a very strong opinion and has a white house press pass. this is sausage making. you know, phil, right, it is not always polite or calm or anything like that. the white house is first and foremost a political brawl, and the reporters who are there are political brawlers themselves. when the public looks at that they say oh, my god, that's noisy and ugly, yum. it is how it happens. it will be up to sean spicer to determine how to navigate that. i hope they don't move the whole thing out of the white house. that's more than about real estate. it really is. >> the other thing, the president chooses which
reporters ask him questions. if everyone is invited and donald trump has partisan entities also participating in these briefings, who might he call on? >> well, i think that's going to be the big question. because what we've seen so far is that he loves to talk about who covers him well, loves to also hit back at who doesn't cover him well. so i think it's going to be very telling at his first press conference who he's going to be calling on. i do think this is one of the key conversations that we need to have. the american people are very concerned about the things trump has said and the things his team has said about the press, right? the press is -- president obama talked about this very clearly yesterday in a not-so-subtle way to make sure as he was leaving that the american people understood and hopefully the trump people understood that having a traditional press is so important for our american democracy. that is a big question for
americans right now because they are concerned whether this administration is going to keep people out that perhaps aren't going to cover him, that perhaps don't represent all of the people which right now is a big concern. we saw today, carol -- >> i want to bring rick into the conversation, too. do you really think that will happen? will donald trump totally never ask a "new york times" reporter a question or never ask a cnn reporter a question? >> maybe for a while. >> isn't that bad for democracy. >> i heard president obama say, well, we have to have a press that is open -- >> he wasn't great to the press either. >> they had their problems with the press. he had a press that 90-some-percent of them voted for him. >> we don't know that. >> oh, we do, from surveys in the past. the washington press corps is overwhelmingly in favor of liberal -- >> look at phil's face. >> there were surveys done in presidential elections when they would respond to them --
>> so the president of the united states will only choose reporters who voted republican or for donald trump. >> i'm saying it's easy for president obama and liberals to say we need to welcome the press corps which is generally favorable to them as opposed to trump who has had -- >> isn't there a difference between washington examiner and breitbart or a talk show host? >> there is a difference. they've been conflated. you're seeing a lot more news analysis and commentary on the front page of "the new york times." it's not just the editorial pages that you find an opinion anymore. that's the problem. >> i want to let journalists -- >> a couple of important points. one, the president-elect still calls "the new york times" seemingly on a daily basis. they seem to have good access. what's an important point, we talk about who has access to these briefings. there are conservative pub ligss
that sit in all these briefings right now. do they get called on as much as they want? probably not. will that dynamic shift with the new administration? probably. i think this idea that the brady press room, the white house press corps is some exclusionary group that doesn't am lau individuals in to do real reporting and cover the administration is false. i think if the trump administration tries to continue to push that out there, they're not telling the truth about the white house press corps and what it actually represents. now, will they want better access for some of the publications they feel are more supportive of them, other white houses tend to feed reporters they feel most comfortable with. that's not crazy, not against what we've seen. the big issue is don't conflate your negative opinions about the press corpse with what the white house correspondents association, what the white house press corps is. it is a group of reporters across the ideological spectrum who have press passes, cover the white house how they want to cover the white house. that shouldn't change.
who you call on is up to you. there's an effective way to cover the white house consistent over the last couple administrationtion. >> sean spicer is coming up any moment. i want to ask you to stay. we got the two-minute warning. i don't know if it means anything. stay with me. we'll be back with much more.
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welcome back. busy, busy schedule for the trump team as it gears up for inauguration day. any minute now sean spicer, mr. trump's pick for the white house press secretary will hold his first on-camera briefing. these are live pictures out of washington. the flags are ready to go. also happening in the nation's capitol, another waive of hearings as trump tries to get his cabinet into place. first up, rick perry, trump's pick for energy secretary. that hearing expected to get under way any minute. and next hour, steve mnuchin is in the hot seat tapped fortressry secretary. back with me, phil malso /* joining our panel paul glassless. he's editor and chief for the washington monthly. welcome, welcome, welcome. should we start with the newcomer? >> yeah, we should. >> let's talk about mr. trump's speech. he said he sat down and wrote it himself. i know you've participated in many a presidential speech.
do you think he did write it all himself? >> impossible to know. presidents don't typically write their own speeches although barack obama wrote quite a few of his. they will download their thoughts to a panel of speech writers and senior staff. they'll then look at draft, edit them very kafrlly. president clinton after multiple drafts would sit there and go line by line and rewrite as he tried it out. even if they don't write it themselves, they make it their own. >> i say that because donald trump is so much better when he speaks off-the-cuff. >> yes. he kind of knows that, too. that's been kind of the secret to his rise. during certain times at the end of the campaign, he was sticking to texts, the texts weren't terribly inspiring, and he didn't speak them with much enjoyment. it will be interesting to see him in this mode of speaking not just with a text, but in the
most august and ceremonial and important settings you can imagine. >> rick, mr. trump is going to talk about unity. do you think he'll reach out and recognize some of those people who were adamantly against him? hillary clinton for example or george w. bush. >> mag nam inity is not one of his -- >> that's an important point. >> there's a point when he has to start demonstrating it. clearly the inaugural address is sort of step one, day one to do that. i do expect him to be magnanimous at his inaugural and not boast about how much he won or how big the crowd is. maybe he'll mention the crowd. >> yes, he will. >> what am i saying? of course he'll mention the crowd. >> interesting if there are audible demonstrations in the
crowd during his speech. that's not happened in inaugurals i've covered and seen. it could well happen tomorrow. >> i don't know that anybody is going to be close enough to be heard. this could be cordoned off. >> if they know who they are. >> they'll show them on camera at least. >> so he says he's going to talk about unity, maria. the country does need to unify behind the president of the united states whether you like the guy or not. what can he say for you to say, well, maybe? >> i think he needs to talk about how this campaign was divisive, but now is the time to reach out to everybody including frankly the majority of americans who did not vote for him and work together on the issues that we all care about. he should mention the communities of color that feel so fearful and anxious and terrified at this man taking office. this speech i believe is going to be pivotal, especially because he has not been
magnanimous since the night of the election. i gave him credit for that night during the election when he won. he was magnanimous. that was the last time though that you could describe him as being that. since then he has been as divisive, as -- hitting back to people that he sees are insulting him as he was during the campaign. so you have hispanics, muslims, african-americans, women, all of the people that have felt insult ld during the 18 months of the campaign thinking this is not a guy who seems to want to represent me. one particular element that's important, too, the cabinet is lacking a hispanic american for the first time since 1988. so i think he needs to acknowledge that kind of divisiveness and be the one to reach out to try to have unity. >> paul, if you were helping mr.
trump with his speech and mr. trump wanted to unify, what would you tell him to write? >> speeches aren't about words they're about the substance behind the words. there are things that donald trump ran on that can appeal to people across the aisle. let's just pick infrastructure, building roads and bridges which is one everyone acknowledges both sides care about. you don't want an inauguration speech to be a "state of the union," right? there are ways of talking about the substantive policy of his agenda that, if he carries it forth, this could be a very memorable and important speech. if, however, he is magnanimous and says wonderful things about groups that he's previously insulted and then two days later insults them again, right? if he doesn't carry through with some of the interesting bipartisan policy ideas he's put forth, then it's empty rhetoric.
if he does, this this does marking a change, this would be an important speech. >> judging the -- on a scale of one to ten, the importance of this important speech, since it is such a strange time in our history. is this speech more important than others in modern times? >> yes. this is his first speech as president of the united states, not as the outsider looking in. this is a speech, and presidents have done it all the way back where he sets the soaring themes, where this is a kinder, gentler, the better angels of our nature, whatever he chooses to say. there are words to be remembered by. this is the constitution of his administration. we will be coming back to this, journalists, historians, citizens, to see what goals he lays out and how he articulates them. are they jobs for all americans? is this a conversation that engages all americans? is there a hand across the aisle? is this going to be an indication of how he governs,
how he speaks, the tone he sets for his administration and this era? we are in an era now. the country enters that era with great anxiety, and this is an opportunity for him to address that anxiety and say i am now everyone's president, and this is my vision. >> i have to leave it there. thanks to all of you so much. so interesting and fascinating. thank you very much. thank you for joining me today. i'm carol costello. our special coverage of all these live events in washington begins after a break. see you. ♪ if you have moderate to severe plaque psoriasis isn't it time to let the real you shine through? introducing otezla, apremilast. otezla is not an injection, or a cream. it's a pill that treats plaque psoriasis differently. some people who took otezla saw 75% clearer skin after 4 months.
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washington. >> i'm wolf blitzer. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. today all eyes are on the last two senate confirmation hearings before donald trump becomes the 45th president of the united states. that will happen at noon eastern tomorrow right here in washington. facing the senate as we speak is the energy secretary nominee, former texas governor rick perry. perry now says he regrets recommending back in 2012 that the energy department should be abolished. moments from now one of trump's most controversial nominees faces the senate. former goldman sachs backer steve mnuchin picked to lead the treasury department, faces questions about his record on foreclosures along other issues. at 2:45 p.m. eastern, the president-elect and the vice president-elect mike pence will place a wreath at arlington national cemetery. later a pre inaugural concert at the lincoln memorial at which donald trump is expected to
speak. busy day. >> any moment the incoming white house press secretary sean spicer we're told will give a briefing. we'll cover that live as it happens. let's go live now, however, to capitol hill where we will meet cnn senior congressional reporter manu raju. busy, busy day on capitol hill today. >> reporter: another one of those contentious hearings, as we've seen these partisan hearings take shape, whether it's betsy devos for education secretary, tom price for health and human services. that's what's going to happen with steve mnuchin's hearing. watch for democrats to go aggressively after mr. mnuchin's record. republicans to come pretty aggressively to his defense saying he's being attacked. in fact, mr. mnuchin in his opening statement is expected to
say something along the lines as my character has been unfairly maligned, and he's had extensive work in the financial sector and is well prepared for this job. one other issue hanging over this, democrats have not been happy with the paperwork he's been submitting back and forth to the committee, leaving out some of his investments in the initial round of questionnaires submitted to the senate finance committee. he has since amended those. democrats are already jumping on that omission. expect that also to be a line of questioning, but no question about it this will be one of the more contentious nominations, democrats hoping they can flip republicans to oppose mr. mnuchin. no sign of that happening just rhett. >> manu raju, thank you so much. steve mnuchin just one of the controversial nominees the democrats are going to attempt to draw some blood from today. we also have, of course, the nominee for secretary of energy, former texas governor rick perry who famously in 2012 listed
three agents he wanted to get rid of. one of them, the one he actually forgot during the debate, was the energy department. he is going to say today that he regrets calling for the energy department to be shut down. >> he says that was a mistake. he's changed his views on the department of energy. the whole notion, steve mnuchin is a very rich guy. former goldman sachs banker. he's going to be asked a lot of questions about his own personal investments, especially in the aftermath of the collapse back in 2008-2009. >> there's a bank called the one west bank which he helped take over during the obama years after the crisis began. and there are going to be a lot of questions about how the one west bank handled foreclosures, how they handled various allegations. when nominees, when their names are put forward, they basically go into hibernation, go into hiding and they're focus on
their confirmation hearings and preparing. they don't get a real chance to answer he basically confirmed a lot of the charges against him. we'll hear from steve mnuchin about the allegations made against him during the foreclosure crisis. >> we're hearing from ron wyden of oregon, the ranking democrat. obviously the republicans will be sympathetic to steve mnuchin. among the democrats there are some progressives, liberals, who
could presumably ask him some policy questions about tax cuts for the rich. donald trump has promised tax cuts. steve mnuchin says he's all for it as well. >> i'm told sean spicer is addressing reporters. let's go live. >> i have the disintegrate honor to introduce the head of the transition team, our next vice president, mike pence. >> thank you. thank you, sean. and good morning. it is a momentous day before a historic day. and i'm pleased to have a chance to report to the american people and to all of you, and the progress that we have made at the president-elect's direction, preparing a team that will be ready to serve the american people and make america great again on day one. i'm grateful to be with all of you today. before i give you a brief summary, let me first express
our thoughts and prayers on behalf of the president-elect and myself, for president bush and barbara. they're on the hearts of every american. this morning i understand they had a good night last night. but we encourage every american to remember president bush and his wonderful wife barbara in their prayers. 72 days ago we elected donald trump to be the 45th president of the united states of america. 71 days ago, donald trump set an ambitious schedule prior to this inauguration. and he asked me to chair the transition effort. i was grateful and honored to be given the opportunity to do just that. when we took over, i was impressed, frankly, with the work that governor christie and the transition team had done prior to the election. more than 170 interviews had already been done prior to election day. i'm pleased to report that as of
this morning's announcement, for our secretary of agriculture, all 21 cabinet nominees have been named. 27 total individuals have been named that require the consent of the senate. and we have 536 beach head team members that will be reporting for duty at agencies following the inauguration bright and early on monday morning. there are many people, many people to thank in this regard. and i'm really here just to do that. there is a memorandum that will be in your possession by the ownend of this briefing. and i'll be conveying to the president-elect today to give him a full report on the transition efforts and the progress we've made. allow me to give you a couple of top lines. in addition to the hundreds of interviews and meetings that the president-elect has conducted in the course of this transition, i'm pleased to report that the presidential appointments team has conducted more than 170
interviews prior to the election. more than 200 people since the election have sat down with what we call our tiger teams for full vetting and full review. i'm happy to say the american interest in this administration has been overwhelming. over 4,000 candidate referrals. on the eve of the inauguration, our beach head teams are ready to land and go to work in these various agencies of the incoming administration. on legislative affairs, we organize more than 90 volunteers to create and execute a confirmation strategy to support the 27 publicly-announced senate-confirmed nominees and designees. so far, we'll continue to work very closely to support their efforts as they move toward confirmation. there's been work on agency
action, as i mentioned. policy implementation has been also very brisk during the course of this transition. specifically we focused at the president-elect's direction on a day one, a day 100, and a day 200 action plan for keeping or word to the american people and putting the president-elect's promises into practice. 14 policy implementation teams attracted over 110 active team participants. additionally, 90 experts have been serving in an advisory capacity as we formulated executive action and legislative policy to pursue the goals of this administration. in addition to that, we've been listening. we established through the course of the transition the office of nationwide engagement, o.n.e. for short. 28 listening sessions conducted, 22 business days, met and heard top policy issues and concerns
from more than 1200 organizations, associations, and various interests and entities. there's awful lot of people to thank and there's more details that you'll see in the memorandum that i'll be conveying to the president-elect today. let me begin by expressing my appreciation first and foremost to president barack obama and vice president joe biden. the cooperation that the outgoing administration has extended in this transition effort would make every american proud. and i know the president-elect has expressed his appreciation, not just for the hospitality but for the collaboration of this administration in supporting our transition team's efforts. i would reiterate that today. also very grateful to the gsa administrator, denise turner roth, and her outstanding team here at gsa for the work they've done to support our efforts. also grateful for the vice chairs and the executive committee of the transition effort who have put in very long hours. a number of them are with us
today. ben carson is with us. rudy guiliani, jeff sessions, marsha blackburn, tom reed, represent a part of the vice chair team. and we express our appreciation on behalf of the president-elect for the many hours you've put in helping us assemble this day one team. we also express appreciation to the members of our committee who donated hundreds of hours in assisting us in preparing the recommendations to the president-elect over the course of this. lastly, just two more things to mention. number one is just to thank my team. there's an old saying that -- back in indiana, when you see a box turtle on a fence post, one thing you know for sure is they had help getting there. i can tell you that while it's been my privilege to chair this transition effort, the team that
we've had around us and the extraordinary seven-day-a-week hours they've put in is to their credit. executive director rick dearborn has done a masterful job, extremely grateful for the energetic leadership of our incoming chief of staff reince priebus, incoming general counsel at the white house, don mcgahn, literally working almost round the clock in supporting the efforts of this transition effort. for our team here, bill haggerty on presidential appointments, ron nichol on agency action, andrew brinberg on policy, jamie burke on personnel, eric euland on legislative affairs, and the balance of a team that would make anyone proud. the progress that we have made in the course of this transition and the extraordinarily brisk pace with which it's been conducted is attributed to the integrity and work ethic of
these men and women. i know the president-elect is grateful for their efforts and as chair i am as well. ken hagen is taking over as executive director to wind down the transition. the office of white house personnel will take over the official duties as we continue in the weeks and months ahead to fill out the balance of the administration. but this is the team that got us here to this day at the direction of the president-elect. lastly, i'm especially pleased, i know the president-elect is especially pleased that we're wrapping up this transition on schedule and under budget. we will actually return some 20% of taxpayer funding back to the u.s. treasury. and that is just exactly in keeping with the president-elect's expectations going forward. he is a businessman that knows how to sharpen his pencil. and i'm very pleased to report today that we were able to do that and restore those dollars
to the treasury. let me say, i've been very honored to serve as chair of the transition effort. but all that we've accomplished here, credit goes to a great team. our volunteers, literally hundreds and hundreds of volunteers who put in hours and hours to support this effort. our executive committee, our vice chairs, our staff. but really the credit, i can tell you, goes to our president-elect. sometimes people stop me on the street and they say, how you holding up, i can't imagine how busy you are. i tell them, you have to understand the energy and enthusiasm of donald trump is contagious. it's been his energy and his expectation that's driven this transition effort. i'm proud to be at a place where we've named our entire cabinet before we reach that historic day tomorrow. our job was to make sure the president-elect had the opportunity to make decisions, to assemble the people around