Trump takes DC vic­tory lap

Obama ‘en­cour­aged’ by Trump will­ing­ness to work with his team dur­ing tran­si­tion while Trump calls pres­i­dent a ‘very good man’ in their first meet­ing

China Daily (USA) - - FRONT PAGE - By AGENCIES

US Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump took a tri­umphant tour of the na­tion’s cap­i­tal on Thurs­day, hold­ing a cor­dial White House meet­ing with Pres­i­dent Barack Obama, sketch­ing out pri­or­i­ties with Repub­li­can con­gres­sional lead­ers and tak­ing in the ma­jes­tic view from where he’ll be sworn in to of­fice.

Trump’s meet­ing with Obama spanned 90 min­utes, longer than orig­i­nally sched­uled. Obama said he was “en­cour­aged” by Trump’s will­ing­ness to work with his team dur­ing the tran­si­tion of power, and the Repub­li­can called the pres­i­dent a “very good man.”

“I very much look for­ward to deal­ing with the pres­i­dent in the fu­ture, in­clud­ing his coun­sel,” Trump said from the Oval Of­fice, which he’ll oc­cupy be­gin­ning Jan 20.

While Trump noted that he and Obama had never met be­fore, their po­lit­i­cal his­to­ries will for­ever be linked. Trump spent years per­pe­trat­ing the lie that Obama was born out­side the United States. The pres­i­dent cam­paigned ag­gres­sively against Trump dur­ing the 2016 cam­paign, warn­ing that his election would put the repub­lic at risk.

But at least pub­licly, the two men ap­peared to put aside their ac­ri­mony. As the meet­ing con­cluded and jour­nal­ists scram­bled out of the Oval Of­fice, Obama smiled at his suc­ces­sor and ex­plained the un­fold­ing scene.

“We now are go­ing to want to do ev­ery­thing we can to help you suc­ceed be­cause if you suc­ceed the coun­try suc­ceeds,” Obama said.

From the White House, Trump headed to Capi­tol Hill for meet­ings with House Speaker Paul Ryan and Se­nate Ma­jor­ity Leader Mitch McCon­nell to dis­cuss the GOP leg­isla­tive agenda. Ryan, who holds the most pow­er­ful post in Con­gress, was a some­time critic of Trump and never cam­paigned with him.

Emerg­ing from the meet­ings, Trump sketched out pri­or­i­ties for his pres­i­dency.

“We’re go­ing to move very strongly on im­mi­gra­tion,” he said. “We will move very strongly on health care. And we’re look­ing at jobs — big league jobs.”

Ryan took Trump on a tour of the Speaker’s Bal­cony over­look­ing the Na­tional Mall, the scene of Trump’s up­com­ing in­au­gu­ra­tion. The view, Trump said, was “re­ally, re­ally beau­ti­ful.”

Trump was also be­gin­ning the process of putting to­gether his White House team. Repub­li­can Na­tional Com­mit­tee Chair­man Reince Priebus, who worked his way into Trump’s in­ner cir­cle dur­ing the election, and top cam­paign of­fi­cial Kellyanne Con­way were emerg­ing as pos­si­ble picks for White House chief of staff, ac­cord­ing to two peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the tran­si­tion plan­ning.

I very much look for­ward to deal­ing with the pres­i­dent in the fu­ture, in­clud­ing his coun­sel.” Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump

A third per­son said con­ser­va­tive Pres­i­dent me­dia ex­ec­u­tive Steve Ban­non was also in the mix, though oth­ers in­sisted Ban­non would not have a White House role. A de­ci­sion on chief of staff is ex­pected in the com­ing days.

First lady Michelle Obama met pri­vately in the White House res­i­dence with Trump’s wife, Me­la­nia, while Vice-Pres­i­dent Joe Bi­den saw theMil­i­tary Mike Pence late Thurs­day. Trump’s team was said to be sketch­ing a ro­bust role for Pence, an ex­pe­ri­enced Wash­ing­ton that would in­clude both do­mes­tic and for­eign pol­icy re­spon­si­bil­i­ties.

Obama and Trump met alone, with no staff present, White House press sec­re­tary Josh Earnest told re­porters fol­low­ing the dis­cus­sion.

“The two men did not re­lit­i­gate their dif­fer­ences in the Oval Of­fice,” Earnest said. “We’re on to the next phase.”

The show of ci­vil­ity at 1600 Penn­syl­va­nia Av­enue con­trasted with post­elec­tion scenes of protest across a po­lit­i­cally di­vided coun­try.be ob­served Demon­stra­tors from New Eng­land to the heart­land and the West Coast vented against the election win­ner on Wed­nes­day, chant­ing “Not my pres­i­dent,” burn­ing a pa­pier-mache Trump beat­ing a Trump pinata and car­ry­ing signs that said “Im­peach Trump.”

More obey than 100 pro­test­ers held a sit-in out­side Trump In­ter­na­tional Ho­tel just blocks from the White House. The mostly stu­dent pro­test­ers held signs say­ing “Love Trumps Hate,” a phrase Demo­crat Hil­lary Clin­ton were of­ten found used dur­ingto be the in­volved cam­paign.

Trump’s ad­vis­ers, many of whom were stunned by his un­ex­pected plunged into the huge task of staffing gov­ern­ment agencies. A tran­si­tion web­site, GreatA­gain.gov, ref­er­enced 4,000five po­lit­i­cal ap­pointee open­ings.

Of­fi­cials at the of Pen­tagon and State Mil­i­tary De­part­ment said Joint­they had not yet been con­tacted.

State De­part­ment spokesman Mark Toner said the agency stood ready to work with the in­com­ing team once that team is des­ig­nated and ar­rives here. But we don’t have any firm word as to when that will be.”

KEVIN LAMARQUE / REUTERS

US Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump and Pres­i­dent Barack Obama meet at the White House on Thurs­day. Trump, who was elected the 45th pres­i­dent on Tues­day, toured the US cap­i­tal and also met with Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.

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