Trump picks WWE’s Linda McMahon for SBA job


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

4:25 p.m.

Donald Trump will nominate wrestling executive Linda McMahon to serve as administrator of the Small Business Administration, a Cabinet-level position.

Trump says McMahon will be a “champion for small businesses and unleash America’s entrepreneurial spirit all across the country.”

McMahon is the co-founder and former chief executive of World Wrestling Entertainment, the professional wrestling organization.

She ran two expensive, contentious, yet ultimately unsuccessful campaigns for the U.S. Senate in her home state of Connecticut. She’s also a sought-after Republican donor.

In a statement, McMahon says she’s honored to join an economic team that will “promote our country’s small businesses and help them grow and thrive.”


3:10 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump is expected to nominate Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, a source close to Pruitt has told The Associated Press.

Pruitt has been a booster of the fossil fuel industry and an outspoken critic of what he derides as the EPA’s “activist agenda.” The 48-year-old Republican also denies the overwhelming scientific evidence that the Earth is warming and that man-made carbon emissions are to blame.

Representing his state, Pruitt has repeatedly sued the EPA to roll back environmental regulations and public health protections, including opposing the Clean Power Plan that seeks to limit planet-warming carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants. He also filed court briefs in support of the Keystone XL Pipeline project blocked by the Obama administration.

— Michael Biesecker and Sean Murphy


1:25 p.m.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel says he hand-delivered to Donald Trump a letter from mayors of some of the nation’s largest cities urging the incoming president to continue to protect young immigrants.

Emanuel told reporters after his Wednesday morning meeting with Trump in New York that the letter asked him to continue a provision that protects immigrants who came to the U.S. before age 16 from deportation.

Emanuel says the 14 mayors believe those immigrants are “something we should hold up and embrace.”

Trump has vowed to repeal Obama administration programs that shield thousands of people from deportation.

Emanuel said earlier this week that Trump called him to talk about the White House transition. Emanuel is a former chief of staff to President Barack Obama and worked in the Clinton administration.


10:50 a.m.

President-elect Donald Trump is set to campaign for the Republican candidate for Senate in Louisiana ahead of that state’s runoff election.

Transition officials said Wednesday that Trump will travel to Baton Rouge on Friday to campaign for John Kennedy.

Kennedy, the state treasurer, is facing off on Saturday against Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell, a Democrat, for the seat of retiring Republican Sen. David Vitter.

Trump had previously tweeted his support for Kennedy.

The stop is part of a busy few days of travel for the president-elect.

On Thursday, he’ll stop at Ohio State University to visit with victims of a recent slashing attack that wounded 13 people. Later that night, he’ll hold a “thank you” tour stop in Des Moines, Iowa.


10:25 a.m.

President-elect Donald Trump says he will “work something out” to help immigrants who were brought to the United States illegally as children and granted work permits by President Barack Obama.

Trump has promised to undo Obama’s executive actions, leading to fears among immigrant advocates that he would end Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Hundreds of thousands of young immigrants have gained work permits and temporary protection from deportation under the 2012 program.

In an interview with Time magazine, Trump said: “We’re going to work something out that’s going to make people happy and proud.”

Trump didn’t offer details, but said: “They got brought here at a very young age, they’ve worked here, they’ve gone to school here. … And they’re in never-never land because they don’t know what’s going to happen.”


10:10 a.m.

President-elect Donald Trump wants Iowa’s Republican governor to be the next U.S. ambassador to China — and it looks like Terry Branstad is ready to accept the job in Beijing.

That’s the word from a senior official on Trump’s transition team. The official wasn’t authorized to publicly discuss Trump’s personnel moves and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Trump and Branstad are expected to be in Iowa on Thursday. They met Tuesday in New York at Trump Tower.

—Associated Press writer Thomas Beaumont.


9:45 a.m.

The New York Times is reporting that last week’s telephone call between President-elect Donald Trump and Taiwan’s president was the result of six months of behind-the-scenes work by former Sen. Bob Dole acting on behalf of the Taiwanese government.

The call was a breach of diplomatic protocol, and Trump advisers have made conflicting statements about whether it signaled a new policy toward China.

Dole, a former Senate Republican leader and the 1996 Republican presidential nominee, told the Times that the Taiwanese leadership is “very optimistic” because “they see a new president, a Republican, and they’d like to develop a closer relationship.”


9:15 a.m.

President-elect Donald Trump is a holding a transition fundraiser in New York City.

Most donors paid $5,000 for the chance to meet with Trump at the restaurant Cipriani.

Among those listed as hosts for the breakfast fundraiser are Trump’s picks for treasury secretary, Steve Mnuchin, and for commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross.

Trump is raising money for transition and inaugural costs. On tap for later Wednesday are more meetings and interviews with potential administration hires.


8:50 a.m.

Nobel economics prize laureate Oliver Hart says he’s not impressed by President-elect Donald Trump’s plans for the U.S. economy.

Hart, a Harvard professor, told reporters in Stockholm on Wednesday that he doesn’t yet see “a coherent set of policies” from Trump. He says he’s worried about Trump’s campaign promises of “tearing up trade agreements, imposing tariffs. I don’t think that’s the way forward for the U.S or the world.”

Hart added he’s “sympathetic” to Trump’s plans for infrastructure spending but “when you look at the details of what he had in mind, those are not so impressive.”

Hart shares this year’s 8 million kronor ($930,000) economics award with Bengt Holmstrom of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


8 a.m.

Time magazine has named President-elect Donald Trump its Person of the Year.

In a telephone interview on NBC’s “Today” show, Trump called it “a great honor.”

The Time cover reads, “Donald Trump: President of the Divided States of America” and the cover image features a photograph of the president-elect sitting in his private residence at Trump Tower.

In the NBC interview, Trump took issue with the “Divided States of America” description: “I didn’t divide ’em,” he said. “We’re going to put it back together and we’re going to have a country that’s very well-healed.”


This story has been corrected to say that immigrants were given work permits instead of work visas.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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