TRANSITION WATCH: Jammed
From the New York Times: “Advisers to President-elect Donald J. Trump’s transition team, facing complaints from Democrats that they are trying to jam nominees through confirmation hearings, said on Sunday they were confident all the appointees would be approved by the Senate, perhaps even with Democratic support. Being the minority party, the Democrats would face long odds in trying to derail any of the nominations. They are, however, seeking to delay Republicans’ plans to open hearings on Tuesday until the nominees have completed F.B.I. background checks.”
“The Republican-controlled Senate, brushing aside concerns from Democrats and a government-ethics watchdog, is moving quickly this week to help President-elect Donald Trump staff his administration, scheduling multiple confirmation hearings on a single day on which the chamber also could vote on a step toward repealing much of the Affordable Care Act,” writes the Wall Street Journal. “Republicans have set at least nine confirmation hearings for the week, starting on Tuesday with one for Sen. Jeff Sessions (R., Ala.), whom Mr. Trump nominated to lead the Justice Department.”
And the AP: “President-elect Donald Trump and his Cabinet picks are preparing to face public questioning over their business conflicts, their approach to Russia and other issues during a crucial week that will including a slew of confirmation hearings and Trump's first news conference in nearly six months.”
One of us(!) looks at the past history of new presidents’ Cabinet picks and their fights for confirmation in the Senate.
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The Washington Post reports on ethics concerns about Trump’s advisers, who could use their position to boost their own business interests.
Trump slammed actress Meryl Streep after she used her acceptance speech at the Golden Globes to take aim at the incoming president.
From NBC’s Tracy Connor: “After his election, Donald Trump quickly settled a series of business disputes — but just days before his inauguration, the president-elect's company is still waging a legal battle against a Florida shop owner over an unpaid bill. The matter could have been settled for what amounts to pocket change for a billionaire, but the Trump Organization decided to take its chances in court. Now Trump stands to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars. And if he wins, it could force a small businessman — one of hundreds who say they were stiffed by Trump over the years — possibly into bankruptcy.”
POLITICO lists 30 power players in Trump’s Washington.
Did you miss Meet the Press? Catch up with the highlights here.
TRUMP AGENDA: Profiling the Mercers
The Wall Street Journal profiles conservative megadonors Robert and Rebekah Mercer, who are “poised to become major power brokers in Mr. Trump’s Washington.”
The New York Times: “Russian warplanes have carried out airstrikes to support Turkey’s offensive in northern Syria against the Islamic State, an important evolution in a budding Russian-Turkish partnership. The deepening ties threaten to marginalize the United States in the struggle to shape Syria’s ultimate fate.”
Mitch McConnell says that the push for Obamacare repeal will begin by the end of the week.
The Washington Post looks at how Trump’s plan to restrict the H1-B visa program is playing in India.