AMY WALTER: The president-elect hits the road, selling jobs, his "America First" agenda,
and reveling in his victory.
I'm Amy Walter, tonight on Washington Week.
PRESIDENT-ELECT DONALD TRUMP: (From video.)
Companies are not going to leave the United
States anymore without consequences, not going to happen.
AMY WALTER: The president-elect delivers on his promise to keep jobs in America.
Is this a one-time deal or a sign of more to come?
Back in campaign mode, Trump reminds Americans what he stands for and why he won.
PRESIDENT-ELECT DONALD TRUMP: (From video.)
We will finally end illegal immigration.
We will construct a great wall.
And by the way, we are repealing and replacing Obamacare.
AMY WALTER: As Trump continues to pick his Cabinet, the candidate who boasted of
"draining the swamp" taps two Wall Street insiders for crucial nominations.
Democrats aren't impressed.
SENATOR PATTY MURRAY (D-WA): (From video.)
He is putting together a gold-plated and
mahogany Trump-style Cabinet of Wall Street bankers, billionaires, millionaires, friends,
insiders, campaign contributors and cronies.
AMY WALTER: On Capitol Hill, Nancy Pelosi is reelected House minority leader.
HOUSE MINORITY LEADER NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): (From video.)
But never again will we have an
election where there's any doubt in anyone's mind where the Democrats are when it comes
to America's working families.
AMY WALTER: But the lopsided win reveals many Democrats are looking for new leadership.
We'll get analysis from Carol Lee of The Wall Street Journal, Philip Rucker of The
Washington Post, Carrie Budoff Brown of POLITICO, and Manu Raju of CNN.
ANNOUNCER: This is Washington Week.
Once again, from Washington, Amy Walter.
AMY WALTER: Good evening.
President-elect Donald Trump took a break from his transition
duties to travel to battleground Ohio to thank his supporters for his election victory.
PRESIDENT-ELECT DONALD TRUMP: (From video.)
I am going to need you to fight as hard for
these proposals as you fought for this great campaign of ours.
Now that you've put me in this position, even if you don't help me one bit, I'm going to
get it done, believe me, don't worry about it.
AMY WALTER: Thousands turned out in Cincinnati to celebrate with the incoming president
and vice president-elect.
Earlier in the day, the Trump-Pence team made a stop in
Indiana to announce a deal they've brokered with the Carrier company.
The 10-year, $7 million package will keep the Indianapolis operation from moving to
Mexico and save hundreds of manufacturing jobs.
Mr. Trump was able to make good on his
campaign promise to keep jobs in America in part because Vice President-elect Mike Pence
is still the governor of Indiana and he could offer tax incentives.
So, Phil, what does what happened this week with the Carrier situation tell us about the
Donald Trump economic situation?
Are we going to have a case-by-case economic policy?
PHILIP RUCKER: We might.
I think he wanted to show immediately out of the gate here as
president-elect that he's going to be a champion for working people.
AMY WALTER: Right.
PHILIP RUCKER: He's trying to help this company save these jobs.
It both sends a
threat to private industry in the company that if you outsource your jobs you're going
to risk the wrath of this powerful administration, but it's also an opportunity.
People can say, hey, I'm going to send my jobs to China unless you give me a tax
incentive, and it creates a bit of a slippery slope for the administration and for the
state governments as well as they put together incentive packages.
AMY WALTER: But to your point, it did save 1,100 jobs.
There are people who might have lost their job that now are able to stay in Indiana.
PHILIP RUCKER: Certainly, and he can take credit for it, which he did yesterday, and it
looks like a big win.
I mean, he traveled around the country for the last two years
saying I'm going to revitalize the economy, save jobs, I'm going to help the forgotten
men and women of America who Washington is not looking out for them.
He's saying I'm not even president yet and I'm already looking out for them.
MANU RAJU: And you mentioned - Phil mentioning the slippery slope, that is the thing
that he's going to have to be worried about in this case-by-case economic policy if he
does continue to pursue this company by company.
You saw the
conservative Wall Street Journal editorial page lash this Carrier deal because of those
exact concerns, that you should let the free market work its will.
And I was speaking today with some members of the conservative House Study Committee,
the Republican Study Committee, and they said, look, this is not necessarily the way we
want to go for an economic policy, including Congressman Dave Brat, member of the House
But Paul Ryan, the House speaker, I asked him specifically if he had
any concerns about this, he defended Donald Trump.
So right now he's getting a lot of support from the leadership, but some of those more
conservative members a little squeamish about this idea.
AMY WALTER: Well, and, Carol, I know you don't write for the editorial page, but it was
your newspaper that came out today that called it a shakedown what Donald Trump was doing
What is the concern that some have about how this deal was done from a
free market perspective as well as the power of the bully pulpit as the president to
make these sort of deals?
CAROL LEE: A couple of things.
One, you have - this is essentially government
intervention which is not necessarily something that Republicans typically are for, so
there's that piece of it.
There's the piece of, you know, if you do this for one
company, what are you going to do for the next company?
Is there favoritism among this?
You know, how do you play that?
And then third, you know, is there a strategy, is there
a broader strategy that President-elect Trump is going to apply to the manufacturing
sector that can help it as a whole?
Is this a one-off?
What do the other companies,
deals look like, what does this deal look like?
We don't know exactly.
And broadly, is there a policy that will help the sector writ large?
AMY WALTER: Well, have we seen anything like that, that there is something that's going
to be coming out, that the administration is talking about we're going to come out with
something specific to address the issue of manufacturing?
CAROL LEE: No, not yet.
And, you know, we haven't - you hear, though, the current
White House saying that if Donald Trump were to do this 804 times, then maybe he would
match President Obama's record on reviving the manufacturing sector.
But you haven't
seen a broad strategy or a policy or blueprint from the Trump administration-in-waiting.
AMY WALTER: Administration, at this point.
Well, I want to talk about the thank you
And Donald Trump went to Ohio.
It looked like a campaign rally like we
saw throughout the course of this year.
He had prepared remarks, but he also veered in
and out to attacking the media, attacking Hillary Clinton, talking about how great his
victory was in different states, saying people didn't believe in him.
So is this what we should expect to see from a President Trump for the next four years,
these campaign-style rallies even while he's president?
CARRIE BUDOFF BROWN: I mean, they seem to be indicating that it will be.
A lot of advisers say that he really likes doing this.
And honestly, Carol and I covered Obama, President Obama together -
CAROL LEE: We broke the story together.
CARRIE BUDOFF BROWN: Yeah.
But I have to say, this reminds me a lot of him because
it's the same thing.
And what he said in the clip at the start of the show, I need you
to help me pass my agenda in Washington, this is exactly what President Obama did, not
You know, President Obama was this great, you know, get out there, loved
the campaign rally-style events, he used the bully pulpit traveling the country,
you're going to help me pass my agenda.
It just - it doesn't - it's very, very hard
to do that.
And so we see him doing this, he's going to feed off of it.
But it's probably,
you know, it's going to be challenging.
But yeah, I think it's what we're going to see.
CAROL LEE: And if you look at how President Obama did it, he did it sort of tailored and
He campaigned before the inauguration, but trying to rally support for a
And he did it in small events, they weren't these kind of big rallies that
came later where he would do those for health care and town halls and things like that.
But prior to his inauguration, he was trying to sell one very specific thing, and that's
different than what Donald Trump was saying last night, which was, you know, he wants to
MANU RAJU: And he really was promising the moon to his supporters.
I mean, he did
not walk back anything that he said on the campaign trail.
He said everything they're going to do, they're going to build a wall, they're going to
make the country more secure, he's going to get rid of ISIS, you know, things that will
be very difficult to achieve in the short term and the long term, particularly the power
of the president is limited.
Even though he has control of both chambers of Congress,
he still does not have 60 votes in order to break a filibuster in the Senate.
He needs bipartisan support to get a lot of things done.
So at the end, he may disappoint a lot of those supporters.
But what he said yesterday, he said people are fools to think that we should limit our
expectations, so his supporters are expecting a lot from him.
PHILIP RUCKER: And one of his problems is he's trying to govern a very divided country.
The emotions are still raw out there.
And we saw him in Ohio; this is the first in a
series of events he's going to have over the next few weeks.
And the question is, is he going to go to places that did not support him?
Will he go to Denver, Colorado, will he come here to Northern Virginia?
Will he go to, like, an African-American community, like Detroit or inner-city Cleveland,
and really try to reach out to people who did not support him and who have, you know,
pretty serious doubts about his leadership abilities.
AMY WALTER: Well, I want to move over actually to the other job that he's doing, which
is he's trying to staff-up his administration.
And we've got - so far we have, among
other names, Elaine Chao, the former labor secretary under President George W. Bush.
She's been tapped to lead the Transportation Department.
We have Congressman Tom
Price, he's a doctor, he'll be the secretary of Health and Human Services.
And Price led the Republican charge to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
We also know that candidate Trump campaigned as the ultimate outsider, but he's turned to
a number of Washington and Wall Street elites to lead the Cabinet.
So, Carrie, what should we read into the picks that he's made thus far?
CARRIE BUDOFF BROWN: I mean, he - this is - we wrote this week in POLITICO, I mean,
that the folks - it was actually, like, two stories honestly of this Cabinet.
One is that he's picking extraordinarily conservative, you know, leaders in these
Education, someone who does not like public school and wants to
drastically change it.
You have Tom Price who, you know, more controversially than
wanting to repeal Obamacare is that he wants to privatize Medicare.
You could go
down the line, there's a number of extraordinarily conservative leaders taking over.
And then you have a group of, you know, Wall Street, you know, long-time Wall Street
figures, and that, in Treasury and other places, that is proving to be, you know, that's
That directly contradicts some of the rhetoric, a lot of the rhetoric
that he espoused on the campaign trail.
I think the question with all of this, I mean,
there's a lot of excitement about the very conservative picks, I think there's some
backlash, to a certain extent, on the Goldman Sachs, Wall Street elite folks.
But I think we have to sort of check ourselves in terms of how much his supporters really
care or really sort of are going to push back on this.
I think that was the big failing of the media, I think, throughout this campaign, is
really taking him at his word all the time and that his supporters would take him at his
So I think that's the wild card as we talk about this just what the impact
And we'll only know, like, months or maybe years down the road.
AMY WALTER: Well, and, Manu, these folks also have to get confirmed.
MANU RAJU: Yeah.
AMY WALTER: So what can you tell us, you spend a lot of time on the Hill, for what
Democrats are planning for these confirmation hearings?
We listened to Patty Murray who called it the gold-plated Cabinet.
But are they going to be very aggressively, you know, anti these picks?
MANU RAJU: I think so.
I think, well, it depends on who it is.
I think you're
going to see a big fight over Tom Price.
Maybe there's going to be a proxy war over
You may see Steve Mnuchin come under fire from the left wing of the
Democratic Caucus, namely Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders are already going after
And Jeff Sessions, even though he's a colleague, a fellow senator, he has a very
conservative record, particularly on immigration, civil rights issues.
They're going to go after him.
But the problem for Democrats is that they're almost powerless to prevent these guys and
women from getting confirmed because of their own actions in 2013 where they changed
filibuster rules, and now it's only 51 senators are required to confirm nominees.
The Republicans, after that Louisiana Senate race is called, are going to have 52 seats.
So unless something goes drastically wrong where Republicans start voting against these
candidates, Trump is going to get his nominees.
It may be a messy fight in some cases,
but he'll probably get the people in place by the time he is sworn in in late January.
AMY WALTER: And, Phil, the one thing I wanted to bring up, it was the secretary of
state, that's one position that still has not yet been filled, lots of names floating
You wrote this week about a dinner that Mitt Romney had with Donald Trump.
What's going on there?
PHILIP RUCKER: Well, they're sort of feeling each other out.
Donald Trump reached out to Mitt Romney soon after the election to try to have a meeting
with him, broker a peace.
Mitt Romney, of course, was the face of the Republican
resistance to Trump during the campaign.
But they had a meeting and by all
accounts they hit it off.
There seems to be some chemistry there now.
He's very seriously being considered for secretary of state.
His people say he
wants the job.
It's a question of whether Trump is willing to ask him.
There's a lot of resistance within Trump's inner circle to tapping Mitt Romney.
They feel like he should go with a loyalist, like Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New
And he's also intrigued by retired General David Petraeus.
Trump has been
dazzled by these generals.
He loves their stories, he likes the power that they convey.
And he had a very productive meeting with Petraeus earlier in the week, so he's very much
in contention as well.
AMY WALTER: Well, and, Carol Lee, that brings up the other person who's been not
necessarily officially named, although yesterday at his rally Donald Trump told us that
the General James Mattis would be picked as defense secretary.
There are a lot of
folks who are raising concerns about this general-heavy, military-heavy Cabinet.
CAROL LEE: That's right.
And the one thing that I would add to what Manu was saying
about the Hill and Democrats' ability to cause heartburn for Donald Trump and his
nominees is that when it comes to General Mattis as defense secretary, there is
legislation that needs to be passed to clear him for being able to serve in that
And, you know, you have senators like Senator Gillibrand from New York
who's sort of threatening that she may use a procedural move to require 60 votes.
And that could potentially tie that up or at least allow Democrats to vent some of their
frustrations on this.
But there are concerns that people are raising about if you
have a general as your national security adviser and your secretary of defense and
your secretary of state, that's a lot of generals.
And the counterargument to
that is that just because you have a general doesn't mean they're necessarily hawkish.
If you look at Colin Powell, he was not the hawk in the Bush administration, even as he
was serving as secretary of state.
And so it can kind of cut both ways.
And what you hear from people close to Trump is that he really doesn't care, which will
And that he's just going to pick who he wants to
pick and that he's not influenced by this chatter about too many generals.
It's also ironic because Donald Trump said he knew more than the generals during the
campaign, which is, you know, fun for us.
AMY WALTER: Well, and Petraeus has the other issue on even some -
CAROL LEE: Then there's that.
AMY WALTER: And then there's Petraeus, which, of course, when we talk about concerns
with Hillary Clinton and her server, we obviously have General Petraeus.
CAROL LEE: Right.
And he, you know, was charged with leaking classified
information to a woman he was having an affair with, who was his biographer.
And that, you know, there's another irony, right?
Because Donald Trump spent a lot
of time in the campaign and even brought it, you know - his crowd -
his supporters brought it up last night at his rally, hitting Hillary Clinton for
mishandling classified information.
MANU RAJU: And I can tell you, Amy, talking to Senate Republicans yesterday, they do not
want Petraeus to be the nominee for secretary of state because it could lead to those
questions that they're going to have to respond to and they're going to have to cast a
difficult vote and they'd rather see their own colleague, Bob Corker, the Senate Foreign
Relations chairman, get that nod instead.
CAROL LEE: He's definitely the safe pick.
AMY WALTER: Corker is the safe pick, Senator Corker from Tennessee.
Well, Nancy Pelosi won reelection to her House minority position this week in an
election that revealed the deep post-election divide within the Democratic Party.
Nearly a third of House Democrats supported Ohio Representative Tim Ryan who challenged
the 76-year-old lawmaker.
Pelosi wants to put a check on the Trump administration's
agenda, but what can she really do, number one?
And the second question, Democrats,
they had a bad election night, and yet the rank and file stuck with the leadership.
What does that tell us?
MANU RAJU: Well, she has a lot of loyalty within that Democratic Caucus.
ruled it with an iron fist since 2003.
She's raised a ton of money for these members.
And she's very progressive and this is a very progressive caucus, so a lot of them want
to stick with her and they like her a lot and they trust her.
On the other hand, she
did lose 63 votes.
That is significant, because the last time she hit a significant
challenge or a challenge, 2010, she lost 43 votes.
There are 20 more members who
There's a more outspoken, more unrest within the Democratic Caucus
in the House than there has been in a long time.
That's going to be -
it's a real warning sign for her going forward and it's giving a platform to the more
moderates, Rust Belt-type Democrats, but also some others, too.
Marcia Fudge, a congresswoman, member of the Congressional Black Caucus, supporting
And the incoming chairman of the CBC, Cedric Richmond, would not say if
he voted for Nancy Pelosi.
So there is a lot of concern about her leadership going
So she has made some changes to showcase she's going to be more inclusive,
bring more members in.
But does she do differently?
It's hard to know for right now.
AMY WALTER: And what is the concern when you talk about in the rank and file they're
It is that they lost or is it about the direction?
Is it about her personally?
What is it?
MANU RAJU: It is all of the above.
The way she is running things, some believe it's
more - she's too insular.
It is about the direction, about the messaging.
Were we focusing on the right issues?
And frankly, it's about generation and age.
She's 76 years old.
There are a lot of younger members who are eager to climb the
ladder and they believe their voices need to be heard within the leadership and
it's time for the party to put a fresh face forward.
So that is a vocal, a small
section of the Democratic Caucus, but vocal and one worth paying attention to.
AMY WALTER: And, Carrie, Republicans, though, on the other side very excited.
They have the House, they have the Senate, a lot of talk about rolling back Obamacare.
But it's not as easy as it looks, is it?
And how is that going to work?
CARRIE BUDOFF BROWN: It's not.
There's a lot of debate right now on how to do it.
You have some members of the Senate Republican Conference that want to put forward
something, replace Obamacare before they repeal it.
There's others who say we're
going to repeal it and within three years we will do a replacement.
And we're creating potentially an Obamacare cliff, which means within three years
Congress has to act -
AMY WALTER: Or else it goes away?
CARRIE BUDOFF BROWN: Yeah, I mean, and so it creates this sort of pressure.
But we all know what happens when Washington does that.
They don't meet it or they create a patchwork or they will hit the cliff.
And so it creates a crisis really.
And so there's a lot of division.
You know, there's agreement that they don't like Obamacare, but this has been the
challenge, ever since Obamacare passed, and even throughout the debate, they don't know
how to, you know, they do not yet have a strategy that enough people can agree to.
And even on Medicare there's a lot of - we have folks in the Senate Republican
Conference who are not totally bought-in to repealing Medicare.
And there is -
they know what the numbers will look like and what the backlash would be and the
political pressure they would face from very, very important constituencies, senior
citizens, if they go forward with this.
And I think for the Trump White House
they'll have to think about when they do that and how they do that.
You come out
of the gate first with a Medicare repeal or privatization, and we could see a
repeat of sort of what happened to George W. Bush in 2004.
He said he would
privatize Social Security and you sort of lose then an entire term because of the
So there's a lot of promises that were made.
It's going to be
challenging for Trump to navigate those, and in particular with his own Republican
You know, they're unified.
You know, they won.
It's the first time they're able to work with a Republican president.
But it's just like Democrats learned the last eight years, it is not that easy.
AMY WALTER: It is not.
And, Carol, I want to go to you because the Obama
administration has less than 50 days.
They want to push through any legislative
priorities, executive priorities and trying to protect his legacy.
Tell us how he's going about doing that and what can he actually do to sort of solidify
the gains that he's made, that the administration wants to gain before Trump takes
What are they doing?
CAROL LEE: Well, there's a number of things.
What they're doing is
they're looking at there's policies that are already in place, such as the Iran
nuclear deal, the president's Cuba opening and other foreign policy sorts of pieces.
And they're looking at how do you - how to make sure that the Iran deal is as
dug in as possible, doing that largely by trying to get the international banking
system functioning in a way that is bringing Iran in in a way that it hasn't been.
With Cuba, it's, you know, pressing the Cuban government to finally get off and, you
know, stop sitting on deals with U.S. companies to get them there because that
makes it - you know, you can undo a diplomatic engagement, but if you were to
suddenly say, like, you, airline, cannot travel to Cuba anymore, that could
solicit lawsuits against the government.
And so they're trying to do that there.
And then there's this whole look at regulations.
And the idea is, you know,
obviously, if you do things by executive order, the next president can come in
and undo them immediately.
And President Bush watched President Obama do that for
the first, like, hundred days of his presidency.
And so - but they're trying to
pass as many of these as they can in order to push - force the Trump administration
to say, OK, which ones do we care about, which ones do we really want to roll back.
And these are everything, from protecting public lands to trying to deal with Wall Street
in some way or to, you know, dealing with emissions.
And so we'll see, there
will be a number of them in coming weeks and then they'll just leave it to the
Trump administration to decide which ones they want to undo and prioritize.
AMY WALTER: All right.
Well, we're going to have a lot more to talk about.
I wish I could talk to you guys all night, but it's all we have, the time that we have.
The conversation, though, is going to continue on Washington Week Extra where we'll
discuss how President-elect Trump plans to deal with the White House press corps, a lot
of these folks here around the table, and how a clash between the Trump and Clinton
campaign managers shows just how difficult it may be to move on past the November
You can find that online at www.pbs.org/WashingtonWeek.
And while you're there, take the Washington Week-ly News Quiz and test your knowledge of
I'm Amy Walter.