The Latest: Trump narrows Supreme Court picks to ‘3 or 4’


WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President-elect Donald Trump (all times EST):

10:20 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump says he has narrowed his choice for a Supreme Court nominee “down to probably three or four candidates.”

One of Trump’s first decisions after his inauguration will be to nominate a replacement for Justice Antonin Scalia, who died in February. The high court has been functioning with just eight justices since then, with the Republican-led Senate refusing to hold hearings on President Barack Obama’s nominee, Judge Merrick Garland.

Trump tells Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity, in an interview that aired Thursday night, that his Supreme Court candidates are “terrific people. Highly respected, brilliant people.”

He says he will announce his nominee “pretty soon.”

__

8:20 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump says he will nominate retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis to lead the Defense Department.

Trump made the announcement during a post-election victory rally Thursday in Cincinnati.

Mattis retired in 2013 after serving as the commander of the U.S. Central Command.

In a recent tweet, Trump referred to Mattis by his nickname “Mad Dog” and described him as “A true General’s General!”

__

7 p.m.

House Speaker Paul Ryan says he and Donald Trump have moved beyond their disagreements during the presidential campaign.

Ryan tells CBS in an interview excerpt that aired Thursday that he and Trump “speak about every day. And it’s not about looking … back in the past. That’s behind us. We’re way beyond that.”

Before the election, the Wisconsin Republican criticized some of Trump’s more incendiary remarks, and Trump called Ryan “weak and ineffective.”

Ryan now calls Trump a “get-things-done kinda guy,” but he insists Congress won’t simply give the incoming president a blank check.

The speaker says Trump believes President Barack Obama “stripped a lot of power away” from Congress, and wants to “reset the balance of power, so that people and the Constitution are rightfully restored.”

___

6 p.m.

Workers at an Indianapolis factory say they’re hopeful the deal President-elect Donald Trump brokered to reverse some job cuts there can be repeated elsewhere.

Carrier plant forklift driver Robert James says he’s happy about Thursday’s announcement but disappointed that perhaps 400 jobs at the 1,400-worker factory will still be lost to Mexico.

James says he wants to give Trump a chance to stop other factory closings even as he worries the Carrier decision might be one-shot deal.

Jeffery Blackford is a 25-year employee of Carrier and wore a red Trump baseball cap to Trump’s announcement. Blackford says he believes Trump is letting corporations know they can’t leave America.

A Carrier spokesman says the company received $7 million in state tax incentives to keep the factory running.

__

3:45 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump is renewing his pledge to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border during his first extensive public remarks since winning election.

He addressed border security briefly in a Thursday speech at an Indiana air conditioning company.

Trump says: “People are saying, ‘Do you think Trump’s going to build the wall?’ Trust me, we’re going to build the wall.”

The incoming president seemed to pull back on his plan to build a wall in an interview soon after the election. He said at the time he would consider a fence in certain areas along the border.

Trump also said Thursday the wall would “have doors” allowing legal immigration.

There are currently several hundred miles of border barrier separating the United States and Mexico. Trump promised during the campaign to extend a concrete barrier across the entire 1,954-mile border.

___

3:35 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump is warning that companies are not going to leave the United States anymore “without consequences. It’s not going to happen.” He says that companies leaving will be “taxed very heavily” at the U.S. border.

Trump spoke at an Indianapolis factory where he says he helped prevent hundreds of jobs from moving to Mexico.

Trump said at the Carrier plant that more than 1,100 jobs will be maintained there. But he didn’t talking about hundreds of workers who are still set to lose their jobs.

The incoming president is vowing to lower the country’s business tax rate from 35 percent “hopefully down to 15 percent” and eliminate regulations.

Any changes to the tax code would need to be approved by Congress.

___

3:25 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump says he didn’t mean it when he first vowed to stop an Indiana air conditioning company from shipping jobs to Mexico.

Trump said Thursday that the campaign-trail promise to save Carrier was initially only a symbol for the other manufacturing jobs he would save if elected. He said he thought it was too late to change the company’s plans.

He says it wasn’t until a week ago that he took his promise seriously, after watching a report about the Indiana company on the nightly news.

Trump says he called a company executive and helped negotiate a deal that would involve keeping about 800 union positions in Indianapolis that were initially set to be outsourced.

Indiana officials offered Carrier $7 million in incentives as part of the deal.

___

2:45 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump is touring the Indiana factory where he says he saved hundreds of jobs from moving to Mexico.

Trump, joined by his running mate Mike Pence, walked through a portion of the Carrier plant in Indianapolis.

He waved at some cheering workers, spoke with Carrier executives and inspected an assembly line.

Trump made saving the plant a central promise of his campaign.

A deal was reached this week to keep 800 jobs at the Indiana plant. But hundreds more are still set to lose their jobs.

A Carrier spokesman said earlier Thursday that the company received $7 million in tax incentives from Indiana to keep the factory running.

___

1:30 p.m.

The chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee says he’ll wait until Donald Trump becomes president before looking at potential conflicts of interest involving Trump’s business empire.

Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz (CHAY’-fits) of Utah says it’s too early for lawmakers to look into Trump’s financial ties with foreign businesses and governments, or to deal with other questions.

Democrats have called for investigations into Trump’s vast holdings, as well as his lease with the federal government for a luxury hotel near the White House.

Chaffetz says Trump “needs time to get his affairs in order. When he becomes the president we’ll start providing some oversight of that.”

___

1:15 p.m.

Indiana is offering Carrier $7 million in incentives to keep some jobs in Indiana that the company had planned to shift to Mexico.

A company spokesman, Seth Martin, says the offer was made to the air conditioning and furnace maker after negotiations with President-elect Donald Trump.

Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence plan to announce the deal in Indianapolis later Thursday.

State economic development officials could not immediately be reached for comment to confirm the figure.

The Associated Press previously reported the deal will involve keeping about 800 union positions in Indianapolis that were to be outsourced.

Trump made Carrier’s plans to shutter the Indianapolis plant a central issue of his campaign. He repeatedly railed against the company for its plans to move production to Mexico.

___

12:50 p.m.

The congressman named by Donald Trump to oversee the country’s health care system would also have an impact on another major issue — immigration.

It’s an area where Georgia Republican Tom Price has been at odds with the Obama administration.

If Price is confirmed by the Senate to lead the Department of Health and Human Services, he would head an office responsible for both resettling refugees in the United States and caring for immigrant children caught trying to cross the border on their own.

The five-term lawmaker has joined his Republican colleagues in objecting to Obama’s immigration enforcement policies, including those at the border. Price co-sponsored a bill that sought to let states block Syrian refugees from settling in their communities.

___

10:45 a.m.

Donald Trump’s transition team says the incoming president will meet on Friday with North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (HYT’-kamp), a Democrat up for re-election in 2018.

Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence plan to talk with Heitkamp at Trump Tower in New York. Trump won Heitkamp’s home state with an overwhelming majority in the presidential election.

Trump spokesman Jason Miller says Heitkamp “comes very highly recommended, very highly qualified as a proven leader and would be an asset in any role or capacity.”

Heitkamp says in a statement she’s appreciative of the meeting and says that “whatever job I do, I hope to work with the president-elect” and her colleagues in Congress to help North Dakota.

comments powered by Disqus