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Trump sweeps into Washington with a wave and a salute

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    President-elect Donald Trump saluted as he and his wife Melania arrived at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., today, ahead of Friday’s inauguration.

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    President-elect Donald Trump, accompanied by Vice President-elect Mike Pence placed a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns, today, at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., ahead of Friday’s presidential inauguration.

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    President-elect Donald Trump, accompanied by his wife Melania Trump, waved as they arrived at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., today, ahead of Friday’s inauguration.

WASHINGTON >> Ready for his big moment, Donald Trump swept into Washington on a military jet today and quickly set to building better ties to the Republican Congress as he kicked off three days of inaugural festivities. Washington braced for an onslaught of crowds and demonstrators — with all the attendant hoopla and hand-wringing.

Trump was quickly taking on more of the trappings of the presidency, giving a salute to the Air Force officer who welcomed him as he stepped off the jet with wife Melania at Joint Base Andrews just outside Washington. And later, placing a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery.

His first stop was a luncheon in a ballroom at his own hotel, where he gave a shout-out to GOP congressional leaders, declaring: “I just want to let the world know we’re doing very well together.” House Speaker Paul Ryan, he said, will finally have someone to sign legislation into law. Then Trump veered into the territory of the unknowable to boast his Cabinet selections had “by far the highest IQ of any Cabinet ever.”

Just blocks away, the White House was quickly emptying out. President Barack Obama’s schedule was clear beyond his daily briefing and his final weekly lunch with Vice President Joe Biden. He got in a few final official acts, though, cutting the sentences of 330 inmates and placing a call to German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Vice President-elect Mike Pence, in a tweet, called Inauguration Eve “a momentous day before a historic day,” as security barricades and blockades went up around Washington in preparation for Friday’s swearing-in ceremony.

“We are all ready to go to work,” Pence said at a morning appearance. “In fact, we can’t wait to get to work for the American people to make it great again.”

Outgoing Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said he’d be putting on his “favorite DHS jacket” and taking to the streets to inspect security preparations for the inaugural festivities.

He told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that areas where inaugural crowds will congregate will be “extra fortified this year with dump trucks, heavily armored vehicles to prevent anybody who’s not authorized from being in the area from driving something in there.” He said there was “no specific credible threat” related to the inauguration.

Trump’s public schedule for the inaugural celebration began at Arlington, where he and Pence stood at attention as a bugler paid taps at the Tomb of the Unknowns. It was a family affair, as Trump’s children and grandchildren silently looked on.

With that solemn moment, “the rhetoric of a campaign moves aside,” Tom Barrack, the head of Trump’s inaugural committee told CNN. “I think you’re going to see a shift from candidate to world leader. I think he’s feeling the weight of it.”

From there, Trump headed to a celebratory welcome concert on the steps of Lincoln Memorial. The two-hour concert was open to the public and featured country star Toby Keith, soul’s Sam Moore, actor Jon Voight and The Piano Guys.

Before departing for Washington, Trump announced his final Cabinet choice: former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue for agriculture secretary. Spokesman Sean Spicer said the president-elect was continuing to make “edits and additions” to the inaugural address he’ll deliver at Friday’s swearing-in.

Never mind about Trump’s gilded private plane: He arrived on a Boeing 757 that is part of the fleet of military planes that become Air Force One whenever the president is aboard. The president-elect, who flew to Washington without any press on his plane, was joined on the trip by a gaggle of his children, grandchildren and other members of his extended family. Also spotted: bags of dresses and formalwear for the coming days’ festivities.

At the luncheon, Trump invited his future first lady to speak, and Melania Trump told the crowd, “Tomorrow we’re starting the work,” adding that “there’s “a lot of possibility and a lot to take care of.”

Donald Trump made sure to work in a plug for his hotel, saying, “This is a gorgeous room. A total genius must have built this place.” Reporters covering Trump’s remark were removed from the room before the president-elect finished speaking.

Ebullient Trump fans were ready for a three-day party.

Jon-Paul and Jean Oldham of Thomaston, Connecticut, visited the National Mall today and had seats for Friday’s inauguration.

“We’re hoping for good weather and hoping for some unity,” said Jon-Paul Oldham, a firefighter and father of four. He said everyone should want Trump to succeed.

“Wanting him to fail is like wanting the plane to crash but you’re on the plane,” he said.

New York Republicans kicked off their inauguration festivities with a breakfast this morning at a downtown hotel.

The crowd, smushed into a ballroom to hear former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, roared as New York GOP Chairman Ed Cox boasted that a kid from Queens was going to be the next president of the United States.

“It’s going to be a remarkable couple of days,” Gingrich said. “Certainly this is the inauguration that no one in the news media was ready for.”

He went on to describe Trump as “part P.T. Barnum” and predicted he would be one of the country’s most accomplished presidents.

It does appear it may rain on Trump’s parade.

Keeping a wary eye on the weather forecast for Inauguration Day, the National Park Service announced that it was easing its “no umbrella” policy for Friday, allowing collapsible umbrellas along the parade route and on the National Mall.

Associated Press Writers Julie Bykowicz, Jill Colvin and Jessica Gresko contributed to this report.

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  • Here’s the most shocking thing about this. Trump has assembled the worst cabinet in U.S. history.

    As listed in the Washington Post:

    As just one colorful example, let’s look at this report in today’s New York Times about Rick Perry, who will be Secretary of Energy. The change from the leadership under Barack Obama is already striking: the current secretary, Ernest Moniz, is a respected nuclear physicist who also came to the job with significant experience managing scientific institutions, and he’ll be succeeded by someone who advocated eliminating the department, although in his defense Perry couldn’t quite remember that it was the one he wanted to get rid of (that famous “Oops” moment). But it’s even worse than that:

    When President-elect Donald J. Trump offered Rick Perry the job of energy secretary five weeks ago, Mr. Perry gladly accepted, believing he was taking on a role as a global ambassador for the American oil and gas industry that he had long championed in his home state.

    In the days after, Mr. Perry, the former Texas governor, discovered that he would be no such thing — that in fact, if confirmed by the Senate, he would become the steward of a vast national security complex he knew almost nothing about, caring for the most fearsome weapons on the planet, the United States’ nuclear arsenal.

    So Perry advocated dismantling the Department of Energy as a candidate in 2012 despite having no idea what the department actually does. But don’t worry — he has recently become aware that his job will not in fact consist of traveling around the world telling people how great oil is. “After being briefed on so many of the vital functions of the Department of Energy,” Perry now says, “I regret recommending its elimination.” Good to know.

    That’s just the beginning. Let’s run through some of the other highlights of the Trump cabinet and cabinet-level appointees:

    Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury: Mnuchin has never served in government and has no experience in setting macroeconomic policy, but he did lead Donald Trump’s fundraising effort. In advance of his confirmation hearing, Mnuchin “failed to disclose his interests in a Cayman Islands corporation as well as more than $100 million in personal assets.”

    Tom Price, Secretary of Health and Human Services: Rep. Price, a doctor who has taken a particular interest in legislating on health care, has a habit of trading in health care stocks that are affected by the legislation he writes; he also recently got a “sweetheart deal” on stock in a foreign biotech firm.

    Betsy DeVos, Secretary of Education: DeVos, a billionaire Republican donor, has spent much of her adult life attempting to destroy public education in America. Despite that work, at her confirmation hearing she displayed a shocking ignorance of basic issues in education policy, though she did opine that schools should be able to have guns in them to ward off grizzly bear attacks.

    Andrew Puzder, Secretary of Labor: If Trump had searched America to find the individual most hostile to the rights of workers, he could not have done much better than Puzder, the CEO of a fast-food company. The man who will be responsible for safeguarding workers’ rights is an ardent opponent of minimum wage increases and laws mandating things like break time and overtime pay; his company has been repeatedly cited for wage theft.

    Ben Carson, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development: The former presidential candidate, who has precisely zero experience in housing policy, was apparently appointed to lead this department because he’s one of the few African-Americans Donald Trump has met.

    Mick Mulvaney, Director of the Office of Management and Budget: Mulvaney was just revealed to have employed a nanny without paying payroll taxes for her, to the tune of over $15,000.

    Wilbur Ross, Secretary of Commerce: The billionaire investor just realized that one of the dozen or so household staff he employs was undocumented.

    Ryan Zinke, Secretary of the Interior: Rep. Zinke is a former Navy Seal whose career was hampered by the fact that he was caught repeatedly billing the government for personal trips home which he falsely claimed were for the purpose of scouting training locations.
    Scott Pruitt, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency: Like Puzder and DeVos, Pruitt seems to have been chosen for his fervent opposition to the mission of the agency he’ll be leading. As Attorney General of Oklahoma, he sued the EPA multiple times over its efforts to enforce environmental laws. In his confirmation hearings, he refused to commit to recuse himself from the cases among those that are still open, in the apparent belief that there isn’t anything wrong with essentially being both plaintiff and defendant in a lawsuit. When asked about lead poisoning, a vital and longstanding environmental issue that gained new urgency with the poisoning of the water in Flint, MI, he said that he had “not looked at the scientific research on that.”

    Michael Flynn, National Security Adviser: Flynn, an ardent Islamophobe and purveyor of lunatic conspiracy theories, was fired from his last job in government because of mismanagement.

    Rex Tillerson, Secretary of State: Tillerson has no government or diplomatic experience, though he has been to many countries that have oil.
    Nikki Haley, United Nations Ambassador: Haley’s foreign policy experience consists of going on a couple of trade missions as governor of South Carolina.

    Here comes Trump!

      • “Our” turn? So you don’t really believe in ONE America but rather just your party? No wonder there is so much divisiveness in this country. It’s nobody’s “turn”. We are one united country. Always has been since its inception.

        • Yes! Our Turn! We do believe in ONE America too. But look at what the Democrats are doing.Count is up to 76 Representatives.United? Democrats Boycotting Trump’s Inaugural event.United?
          And in the Congressional Hearing for Trumps Cabinet picks? The Dems are stalling the Confirmation.( not That it Matters) UNITED?
          Let’s see? Same scenario 2009. When it was Obama’s cabinet confirmation? It took the Republican ONLY 7 days to confirm Obama’s cabinet picks. Yes we are one “United” Country,we just need to get rid of all Party affiliations. Democrats AND Republicans alike!This is what is causing The Divisiveness in our Country.

        • @ MoiLee
          Agree with you.

          @ btaim
          Lecture the losers/cry babies/snowflakes who’s doing all the rioting/violence/protesting.
          WeDeplorables get along with anyone who treats us the way we’d treat anyone..nice.

      • Yes it is. Will the dow rise to 25000 or will it sink to 15,000? Will the budget deficit remain under 500 billion and might even become balanced? Or will the deficit rise to over a trillion? These are the questions I am interested in and if they go like prior republicans, well you know what I will be telling you. lol

    • Klastri! Stop your Belly Aching & Whining! We tried it your way for 8 years. It didn’t work. You were always WRONG in your opinions,especially when it came down to your Fake Poll stats! Give It a rest! Now it’s our turn!
      SMH!
      Shheeeease. What are the Democrats teaching our Children?
      Well actually?
      My wife and I see better examples of mannerism with the children at her school. Not only with the academics..But kids learn to Wait their turn, Stand in Line , Don’t speak out of turn,No Bullying, and in Sports when you lose,you lose with dignity and honor and congratulate the winner! They don’t have this “Sore Loser” stuff. This type of behavior in school ? Is Unacceptable. Maybe the Democrats along with Klastri & Boots can learn a lot from our Keikis . HOW NOT TO BE A…….. “Sore Loser”

      • What exactly didn’t work Moi? Can you be specific? The stock market is now close to 20,000 instead of being under 7000. Doesn’t that count for something? How about Unemployment? Today it is under 5%. Would you prefer to return to the Bush recession where it was double? So how exactly was Klastrl wrong? Please be specific.

        Yes you won, but now you have to perform. So get the stock market up to 25,000, balance the federal budget, and keep unemployment under 5% OK?

        • There’s an overly sensitive moderator bot here. It holds up your post for a bunch of PG words. It used to raise an alert if you spelled out this newspaper’s name (SA).

          So your post will probably appear soon, assuming you only used PG-13 words. Or maybe the Russians are hacking in and picking on you…? Hoho, how do you like them Russians now???

    • Klastri, good description of Trump’s picks for his cabinet. All, do not have an education, background or experience in the Departments they will head. One thing they all have in common, they are exceedingly wealthy, connected with Wall Street, in particular, Goldman Sachs, or connected to the fossil fuel industry. An inept clueless bunch, only out to increase their wealth. Steve Mnuchin, Trump’s nominee for Secretary of the Treasury, has a business creating tax havens and tax shelters for businesses and corporations. We ordinary citizens must pay taxes, these huge corporations need to pay their fair share. During the Senate hearing of Tom Price, Trump’s pick for Secretary of Health, one of the Senators stated that mortality for smoking and associated health problems, were one of the highest health costs, and asked why Tom Price owned a huge number of shares in tobacco companies. rex Tillerson, Trump’s pick for Secretary of State, has a huge vested interest in removing the oil sanctions against Russia, as his company Exxon Mobil has drilling deals with Putin and the Russian oil giant Rosneft. He was awarded the Order of Friendship by Putin.

    • Kl ass, wanted to let you know you are wasting your time. You and Allie need to take a few Valium and chill out. If that doesn’t work and you want to end it all I won’t stop you. I have to get ready for tonight’s festivities. Tomorrow will be a another full day. I’ll send you a sympathy card.

    • at least there true americans and love there country where nerobamas people hated America and helped divide this country to what it is today. we the americans got scr___d by this president and his cabinet. future looks great with this president and his cabinet choices.

    • IRT: Klastri, You must have had many sleepless nights writing this nonsense. So I think its time for you to retire to your crying room, safe zone or whatever you powder puffs call it and we will be sure to send you some leggo,coloring books and stuffed animals to help you get over the loss. By the way do us all a favor and do not come out till you have put on your big boy pants and except the fact that Donald J. Trump is going to be the next President of The United States and the Country is going to be a better place because of it. Grow up and stop torturing yourself there is nothing you can do about it.

        • The intelligent, graceful, class, beautiful, speaks 5 languages who will be officaly 1st Lady tomorrow.

          btw …how’s your..did nothing, vacationing continuously for 8 years, have no feeling of hope now, jive talking, hip hop dancing, school lunch meddling, America h@ting, O’s other half doing?

        • Trump does not like Mexican immigrants or those coming from the Middle East. He made an exception for his wife Melania

        • @ vector aka ikefromeli
          You listen too much to BUZZFEED & CNN & the rest of MSM.
          You over your giddiness on thinking you were having a scoop..BREAKING NEWS…breaking the FALSE story on the Russians having compromising pics..if you are why don’t you apologize…that’s the decent thing to do you know. You even got some almost decent libs chiming in on it too.

          Anyways…TOMORROW #MAGA

        • vector – an organism, typically a biting insect or tick, that transmits a disease or parasite from one animal or plant to another.
          Drain the Swamp.

        • Keonigohan, you have been brainwashed by Rupert Murdock’s Fox News, Steve Bannon’s White Supremacist & White Nationalist mfascist Ne-Nazi Breitbart, and the National Enqirer. Not the most reliable, impartial and truthful source of information

    • Vector: CORRECTION: “Trump does not like ILLEGAL Mexican immigrants or those ILLEGALS coming from the Middle East. Democrats would rather label them “UNDOCUMENTED”.

  • Watching the inaugural ceremony on Fox, I decided to check out what MSNBC has to say. I couldn’t believe. The announcer was talking about a Trump sign that was thrown into the reflecting pool. Of all the possible things they could talk about. I believe they’ll continue to lose market share.

  • “… part P.T. Barnum…”, says Newt. Is he also familiar with the phrase closely associated with Barnum, “There’s a sucker born every minute”?

  • Talk about “Chicken Skin”! Did you catch that song at Trumps pre-inaugural Ceremony today? “Proud To Be An American”! Braahhh! Unaware till today,lol.that I had Hairs on the back of neck “Standing At Attention & Saluting to Our Flag”! What a perfect song to sing in this event! Right ON!
    Indeed I AM Proud to be an American!

    • And why exactly are you proud of being an American? Having the world’s largest prison and military industrial complexes? A country that now believes deficits don’t matter? Just curious.

      • Boots will always be a hater. Only speaking negatively of those he opposes, and positively of those he supports. Isn’t America great Boots? You get to speak your mind, despite your inability to view the world from different perspectives. We all get Boots, you do not like the right wing ideologies. (Rolling my eyes)

        • @Andrew1, I was confused by this: “Only speaking negatively of those he opposes, and positively of those he supports.” Isn’t that what we all do?

    • I got chicken skin watching Trump from the side, head tilted and bobbing up and down. I heard the theme song for Alfred Hitchcock’s TV show, as he saunters in. Brrrrr

  • Trump’s = Kardashian’s

    Bunch of money hungry scammers who suckered America into their following on social media! Actually, they’re polar opposites, WHITE vs. BLACK!

    • That’s what I figured happened in this “Unprecedented” election. We’re living in a reality-show and social media world. All the “wise” old politicians haven’t figured out how to send attention-getting tweets and say outlandish things that get them air time. And with all her Ivy League education, Hillary didn’t pay attention to the most obvious thing about Internet safety.

      On the other hand, Trump, a reality show character himself, said all the dumb things a bunch of people wanted to hear. And the biased media and Russians knew how easy it is to manipulate the undereducated with fake news.

      I bet if one of the Kardashians ran for president, she’d get a bunch of votes. She might even win with a majority of the popular vote. That might wound Trump’s ego, but he might be impeached by that time. #MAGA!

      • “I bet if one of the Kardashians ran for president, she’d get a bunch of votes.”

        Of course she would. From California no doubt, the land of fruits and nuts.

  • When PE Trump exited AF1, and the first family came down first, followed by the PE, I felt pride and satisfaction that we have a leader that truly loves our country in the Oval Office. It felt like a burden was lifted off my back. We still have one more day when President Obama can hurt our country, but at least it’s not 8 long years of darkness that we have had to endure. God Bless America! Let’s make America Great Again!

  • trump and pence looking very presidential at the arlington national cemetery.

    effete deniers of the electoral system sounding like selfish neurotically narcissistic children.

    republican controlled senate and house along with keenly selected cabinet nominees will provide trump with legislation and programs shovel ready to bury the memory of the awful past eight years.

    clock is running on whether obama will pardon clinton or leave her twisting in the aftermath of trump’s unparalleled come from behind landslide win in the presidential elections.

    clintons have nothing left to offer in exchange for a last minute pardon, as pay for play money has dried up considerably after clinton lost the election. so much so, that the money laundering operation is scheduled to fire more than 96 coconspirators come april.

    still, it will be 1231 p.m., january 20, 2017 before we know for sure whether she is given a get out of jail card by obama.

    • “clock is running on whether obama will pardon clinton” You’re funny. Clinton doesn’t need to be pardoned because she’s done nothing wrong. And Trump will never goad his administration into prosecuting her. Never. That was just red meat to throw to the masses during the campaign. Now, if he’d lost, he’d still be pushing for it. But he won, so it will quietly drop off the radar. I’ve won $500 in bets from conservatives who “swore blind” she’d be indicted (just indicted, not convicted!). Now none of them will accept a bet about her being prosecuted, because the matter will be quietly dropped.

      • Clinton’s shenanigans might resurface once the new AG takes over for the outgoing Loretta Lynch. That meeting with her and Bill Clinton on the tarmac in Arizona reeked of collusion. Especially because he gave her a job in the DOJ when he was POTUS.

        • “Reeked of collusion?” I know this is a futile question, but what, exactly, does that mean in your mind? Collusion about what?

          Take your time.

    • @ st1d
      I don’t think you’re kidding about the “pardon Clinton” part. That’s either very funny or scary for many reasons. Trump and other GOP were lying to capture the undereducated vote. And only the fake news ever reported any criminal acts. I’m sure you’ve heard these correct arguments before but chose to disregard them; can you pay attention once, for two minutes?

      Did you notice Trump simply dropped the accusations immediately after winning the election? His weak explanation was that “I don’t want to bother them. They’ve suffered enough.” Does that ring true? Or is that more like when a slick salesman promises you this car has “super duper turbo mode,” then as soon as you sign the contract he acts like he doesn’t know what you’re talking about, changes the subject when you ask him where the “super duper turbo” button is.

      You cannot pardon someone who hasn’t been convicted. And you cannot convict someone unless there’s a trial (in our great country). There is no trial. No smart GOP wants to put Clinton on trial, because the quick verdict would be not guilty, followed by a counter suit by Clinton for false incrimination.

      It’s really important to stay in school and pay attention during reading class. Don’t be st1d at school!

      • monkey:

        the supreme court, in exparte garland,1866, ruled that presidents may issue a pardon before legal proceedings are taken, or during their pendency, or after conviction and judgment.

        when you are dead, you don’t know it and it only affects others. it’s the same thing with your ignorance.

      • MM – The President has extremely broad powers regarding pardons. You’ll recall that President Ford pardoned former President Nixon for “all offenses against the United States which he … has committed or may have committed or taken part in”.

        Mr. Obama could and should pardon Mrs. Clinton. Mr. Trump appears to be insane, and it’s not known at this point what could set him off on a vendetta against Mrs. Clinton.

        • IRT: Klastri So you are saying Hilliar has committed offenses against our Country, why else would you pardon someone. Obama isn’t going to pardon Hilliar he would love to see Trump go after her payback for losing the election.

  • The ACLU yesterday filed the first of many suits against the Trump administration, demanding documents relating to his cesspool of financial conflicts. As of 12:01PM, Mr. Trump will also be violating his lease for the building in which his DC hotel is located. The Opposition is all fired up!

    If you are an attorney or a paralegal, come join us with the ACLU as a volunteer attorney. It’s going to be a great four years – or until Mr. Trump is impeached or resigns! If you haven’t focused your practice on litigation, this may be a great chance to gain lots of courtroom trial experience, initially in second chair. There will be a fight over every single illegal or unconstitutional thing Mr. Trump does. All of them. Starting yesterday.

    • Klastri, being the legal mind you claim to be you should know better than to believe all the fake news you read on President Trump. Look what happened to you during the election you were made a fool of, so why not climb back in your crying room and play with your leggo, coloring books, stuffed animals and whatever else you powder puffs do to help recover from the pain of your loss. Donald J. Trump will be President for the next four years and then he will be re-elected for another four so the faster you put on your big boy pants and except the fact the better of you will be. Stop throwing away your life and career because of a witch hunt then again it will be entertaining to watch you crash and burn again. Enjoy the Inauguration.

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