Politics

Ryan Still Doesn't Want to Run for President
Speaker says ‘the left’ is trying to delegitimize Trump’s presidency before it starts

Speaker Paul D. Ryan insists he still does not want to run for president. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan has been asked hundreds, if not thousands, of times if he wants to run for president one day. The answer has not changed. 

“No,” Ryan said in an interview with Charlie Rose scheduled to air on PBS late Thursday. “It’s just not an ambition that I’ve long harbored, or I’ve harbored.” 

Trump Administration’s First (Unofficial) Day in Washington
Spokesman clashes with Schumer; press credentials get you to nowhere

Several temporary toilets placed on Capitol grounds for the Inauguration have been labeled “Trump’s Tower” with a marker. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Inauguration Day is Friday but the Trump administration’s first official day in Washington was Thursday, as the incoming team clashed with Senate Democrats over its Cabinet nominations.

“There is no excuse,” White House Press Secretary-designee Sean Spicer said, for what he dubbed “delay tactics” by Senate Democrats on some of President-elect Donald Trump’s Cabinet selections. Spicer was in mid-administration form as he added that the Democrats’ tactics “call into question” whether they want a “government of continuity.”

Senate to Vote on at Least Two Cabinet Nominees Friday
Democrats are calling for more time to vet controversial nominees

Schumer said Democrats want more time to vet nominees. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The Senate is expected to vote on at least two of President-elect Donald Trump’s Cabinet nominees after he is sworn in on Friday. 

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer said Thursday that he expected votes on retired Gens. John Kelly to be the next Homeland Security secretary and James Mattis to lead the Defense Department. Schumer also said debate will begin on Kansas Rep. Mike Pompeo’s nomination to be the CIA director, with a vote possible on Friday or early next week.

Maine Gov. LePage Ups Ante About Lewis
Refuses to back down from earlier remarks about Lewis, says NAACP should apologize to white people

Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., was criticized by Maine Gov. Paul LePage for not attending President Elect Donald Trump's inauguration. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Maine Gov. Paul LePage is not backing down from comments he made about Rep. John Lewis boycotting incoming President Donald Trump’s inauguration.

On a radio interview last weekend, LePage said Lewis should remember that Republicans were the advocates for civil rights, the Portland Press Herald reported.

Graphic: How Trump Cabinet Compares to Other Presidents' First Cabinets
Expect fewer lawyers, more military experience

Steven Mnuchin, President-elect Donald Trump's nominee for Treasury secretary, spent time at Goldman Sachs and several hedge funds before getting nominated for Trump's Cabinet. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

By SEAN MCMINN and RANDY LEONARD CQ Roll Call

Donald Trump’s picks for his Cabinet have less government experience and schooling than the first Cabinets of the past three presidents. Trump's skews older, much wealthier and has fewer minorities. 

Obama Writes Thank You Note
Says ‘I’ll be right with you every step of the way’

First lady Michelle Obama, President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and Jill Biden pause to pay their respects at the Martin Luther King, Jr. statue in the Capitol rotunda as they leave the 2013 Inaugural Luncheon. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Barack Obama wrote a final thank you note on Thursday as he prepares to turn the Oval Office over to President-elect Donald Trump.

Obama wrote the message ahead of writing his note to Trump that is customary of outgoing presidents.

John Rutherford Continues Recuperation
In the House, new Intelligence Committee members announced

Florida Republican Rep. John Rutherford has been dealing with a health scare. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

As Washington continues to prepare for the inauguration, one member looks to fully recover from a health scare, while others are settling into new roles on a key committee.

Florida Rep. John Rutherford is expected to be released from the hospital in “the next several days” after the freshman congressman suffered an “acute digestive flare up,” according to his chief of staff, Kelly Simpson.

10 Quotes From the Last 10 Presidential Inaugurations
Every four years on Jan. 20, the country listens as the president looks toward the future

President Barack Obama waves to crowd after his speech at his second inauguration in 2013. (Scott Andrews/Pool/AP file photo)

It’s a ritual that’s been repeated many times over. On Friday, President-elect Donald Trump will take the oath of office and give his inaugural address. Here are some memorable quotes and photos from the last 10 times this was done.

1. Jan. 20, 1977: Jimmy Carter

Warmer Day? Get Ready for a Longer Inauguration
Inaugural addresses have generally run longer when it’s been warmer outside

Tiffanie Davis, 18, lays with her friends from Howard University while trying to stay warm during the wait for the 2009 inauguration. (Philip Andrews/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Attendees at presidential inaugurations can, generally, expect a speech fit for the weather.

Looking at midday temperature data for the past 52 years — stretching back to President Lyndon B. Johnson’s inaugural address after his election in 1964 — incoming presidents have tended to give shorter speeches when it’s colder outside.

Global Events Drive Inauguration Security
Capitol’s top law enforcement officials consider new threats

Larkin, left, and Irving, right, must weigh security versus access when it comes to the inauguration. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Threats, both domestic and foreign, are driving some of the logistics of the 58th presidential inauguration as the Capitol’s top law enforcement officers prepare to secure the public and members of all three branches of government at the same time in the same place.

Recent events in France and Germany, where terrorists drove trucks into crowds of people, pose a new type of threat to consider when handling planning for the day, Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Frank Larkin said.

History Provides Trump a Guide for His Inaugural Address
Changes in party rule show how presidents both praise and criticize

An aide to President-elect Donald Trump, seen here at a news conference on Jan. 11 at Trump Tower in New York City, says his inaugural address will be “unique to him.” (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Newly sworn-in American presidents taking over for a predecessor of another political party have employed a number of rhetorical approaches from which Donald Trump could choose to borrow on Friday. Trump has met with historians and watched past inaugural addresses, but a top aide said his first speech as president will be “unique to him.”

Given the unprecedented tone of both his campaigning style and brash tenor during the transition period, anything is possible when the new president steps to the podium bearing the seal of the president around noon Friday. It is a safe bet some or most of Trump’s address will sound much different than those delivered in the past. 

Inauguration Superlatives: The High Highs and Low Lows
Rhetoric, flubs, health and even conspirators can steal the spotlight

President Barack Obama’s first inaugural address was marred by a flub over the oath and a health scare at the lunch afterward. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Under the best circumstances, a presidential inauguration can inspire a nation. Under the worst, it can lead to a do-over. And sometimes, not to be melodramatic, but dark forces conspire around it.

“With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations,” Abraham Lincoln said at his second inauguration, delivered to a country ripped apart by the Civil War. 

Schedule of Inaugural Events
Official events planned for D.C. area for Thursday, Friday and Saturday

Joe Dick, of Providence, R.I., pushes a cart filled with flags along a side street filled with security barricades the day before the opening ceremony of President Barack Obama’s first inauguration in 2009. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

Before and after the inaugural ceremony on Friday, there are a number of official events throughout Washington, D.C.

3:30-4 p.m. Wreath-Laying Ceremony — Arlington National Cemetery 

Pence Will Be First to Use Reagan’s Bible for Swearing-in
It’s traveling with a onetime Reagan staffer from library in California

Ronald Reagan’s family Bible’s will be used for Vice President-elect Mike Pence’s swearing-in on Friday. (Courtesy Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute)

Vice President-elect Mike Pence says it’s “humbling” to be sworn into office using President Ronald Reagan’s family Bible. Its caretaker says it took some courage to ask to use it. 

“No one’s ever had the courage, I guess, until this point to make an ask for it,” John Heubusch, executive director of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute, said Wednesday.

Confirmation Speculation Swirls in the Senate
Leaders are negotiating whether Cabinet picks can be swiftly confirmed Friday

Defense Secretary nominee James Mattis could be one of the nominees confirmed on Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

<strong>By BRIDGET BOWMAN AND NIELS LESNIEWSKI</strong><br> <strong>CQ Roll Call</strong>

Senators’ focus on President-elect Donald Trump’s Cabinet nominees continued Wednesday afternoon, with some attention turning toward which nominees might be confirmed on Friday.