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President-elect Donald Trump continued to parade potential top Cabinet picks in front of cameras and up the elevators of Trump Tower as the normally clandestine process of piecing together an administration played out publicly again on Monday.
Trump met with a slew of Republicans and old rivals, including former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown, Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin, and Newt Gingrich. But the most intriguing meeting of the day came when Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii made the trip to Manhattan to meet with Trump to discuss the U.S. role in Syria.
Gabbard resigned her post as co-chair of the Democratic National Committee to endorse Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. She accused the DNC of unfairly favoring Hillary Clinton in the primaries.
“Where I disagree with President-elect Trump on issues, I will not hesitate to express that disagreement. However, I believe we can disagree, even strongly, but still come together on issues that matter to the American people and affect their daily lives,” Gabbard said in a statement after the meeting.
Monday’s meetings come after Trump’s weekend at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, where potential administration picks made their way past reporters and cameras before meeting with the incoming commander-in-chief.
Trump has had only brief encounters with the press since his election victory earlier this month. “We’ve made a couple of deals,” Trump told reporters Sunday.
Some interviewees have been clear about what their desired role in a new administration would be. Brown emerged from his meeting by laying out to reporters his priorities if he were to be named secretary of veterans affairs. Fallin’s office released a statement saying the governor was asked to Trump Tower to discuss “possibly serving” in the administration and said their conversation focused in part on the Department of the Interior.
Trump has done his part to spark intrigue into his selection process. He tweeted that Gen. James Mattis is “very impressive” and is being considered for secretary of defense. Trump told reporters over the weekend that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who recently met with the president-elect, is being considered for secretary of state “and other things.”
Also on Monday, Trump released a short video detailing the executive actions he would take on his first day in office, which included taking steps to withdraw from the Trans Pacific Partnership, loosening regulations on American energy production, and placing restrictions on members of his administration becoming lobbyists.
Senior adviser Kellyann Conway told reporters Trump would hold a press conference “soon,” but gave no timetable regarding when more tops posts may be filled.
“The fact is that you have to take your time, this is serious business and he just has all these different people to interview and to consult with and until that is done, he's not in a rush to make those announcements,” Conway told reporters Monday.