Trump names budget director

Trump names budget director

December 17th, 2016 by Associated Press in National General

President-elect Donald Trump takes the stage with Vice President-elect Mike Pence during a rally in Orlando, Fla., Friday night, Dec. 16, 2016. (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel via AP)

Photo by The Associated Press /Times Free Press.

More about Trump's team

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - President-elect Donald Trump, in the latest stop of his victory lap, told a military veteran-laden crowd in Florida that while he would build up the country's armed forces, he would use them sparingly as commander-in-chief.

"For too long, we've moving from one reckless intervention to another, to countries you've never heard of before," Trump said at a rally Friday night in Orlando. "It's crazy and it's going to stop."

Trump still vowed to defeat the Islamic State group, offering no details but promising a foreign policy strategy that "means crushing ISIS rapidly."

On Saturday, Trump will make the final stop on his "thank you" tour at a football stadium in Mobile, Alabama, revisiting the site of the largest rally of his campaign.

Then he will return to Mar-a-Lago, his palatial Palm Beach estate. Aides said the president-elect would likely spend all of Christmas week there, taking meetings and relaxing with his family, and could stay at the coastal resort until New Year's.

Trump on Friday also selected South Carolina Rep. Mick Mulvaney, a budget hawk and conservative Republican, to be his budget director, according to a transition official not authorized to speak publicly about the decision before it was announced.

The stop in Orlando was meant to salute Trump's Election Day victory in a must-win state for his upstart presidential bid. The Republican businessman, who owns multiple properties in Florida, calls it his "second home" and relentlessly campaigned across it, successfully turning out white voters from non-coastal areas to best opponent Hillary Clinton's strength among minority voters in the state's large cities.

He was in vintage campaign form Friday, settling scores, belittling opponents and even conducting a poll from the stage as to whether the crowd liked the phrase "Made in America" or "Made in the USA" better. ("Made in the USA" won convincingly.)

The raucous crowd - which was double in size of the one in the same venue in late October - also acted as if the campaign was still ongoing, repeatedly chanting "Lock her up" about Trump's former Democratic foe Hillary Clinton. They also turned their scorn on the press pen, chanting "Move them back" when Trump bitterly noted that the reporters at the rally had better seats than most of the attendees.

Trump's pick to head the Office of Management and Budget helped found the House Freedom Caucus, the group of conservative lawmakers who frequently battled former House Speaker John Boehner. An early backer of Trump during the campaign, Mulvaney took a hard line on federal spending under the Obama administration.

A strong proponent of spending cuts, Mulvaney fought against raising the nation's debt limit and frequently expressed a willingness to shut down the federal government instead. Mulvaney, as budget director, would be tasked with steering Trump's promised tax cut and infrastructure investment as well as working to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

Though Trump will now set up camp at Mar-a-Lago, he has conducted most of his Cabinet and White House interviews from his office in Trump Tower high above Manhattan. Those interviews, as well as meetings with his advisers, continued Friday morning and included a sit-down with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, the only current member of President Barack Obama's Cabinet to make the trip to the tower.

Also on Friday, Trump's incoming staff - Reince Priebus - had lunch at the White House with President Barack Obama's current chief of staff, Denis McDonough. Other former chiefs of staff were also invited.

Meanwhile, three protesters who have sued Trump, claiming they were assaulted last March at one of his campaign rallies, are asking the president-elect to sit for a deposition before he takes office next month.

Trump's attorney says he intends to "oppose any efforts" to depose the president-elect.

___

Reach Lemire on Twitter at http://twitter.com/@JonLemire


Loading...