Aides Say Trump Wrote His Own Inaugural Address

President-elect Trump has written his inauguration address draft himself, two senior Trump transition officials told CNN.

“The decision is a departure from how Trump tackled speeches during the campaign, when he either delivered off-the-cuff remarks or relied on text prepared by his senior policy adviser, Stephen Miller. It’s unclear exactly to what extent Miller has been involved in fine-tuning Trump’s draft.”

Trump Won’t Have Most of His Cabinet

Politico: “With Republicans in control of the White House and the Senate, it wasn’t supposed to be this difficult for Trump to get his team in place posthaste, especially since Democrats did away with the 60-vote requirement for Cabinet nominees. But all signs are pointing to a slog for Trump and the Senate GOP, even if Republicans believe eventually all of Trump’s picks will be approved.”

GOP Lawmakers Say Trump Misspoke on Health Care

President-elect Donald Trump “promised insurance for everyone this weekend, but Senate Republicans say they are operating under the assumption that Trump meant to say access to insurance for everyone,” BuzzFeed reports.

“The vow clashes with all of the major Obamacare replacement plans put forward by Republicans, which prioritize choice over universality. But some Republicans in the Senate say they are working on repealing and replacing Obamacare under the belief that Trump misspoke.”

Trump Meets with Supreme Court Candidate

President-elect Donald Trump “has met with one of the judges on his short list for potential Supreme Court nominees, less than two weeks before he is expected to announce his choice for the nation’s highest court,” the AP reports.

“Judge William Pryor, an Alabama-based judge on the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, met with Trump in New York on Saturday, said two people familiar with the meeting. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the meeting had not been publicly announced.”

How Fake News Undermines Our Democracy

Charlie Cook: “In this new world or­der of un­filtered or make-be­lieve news, the wall between real journ­al­ism and fake journ­al­ism is be­com­ing blurred and some­times al­most in­vis­ible. When people doubt the cred­ib­il­ity of le­git­im­ate journ­al­ism, people are robbed of the facts that un­der­lie our en­tire demo­crat­ic pro­cess. Elec­tions de­pend on cit­izens mak­ing in­formed de­cisions, but that’s im­possible if raw sewage is pol­lut­ing their news feed.”

18 Million Could Lose Health Insurance In First Year

At least 18 million people would lose health insurance in the first year if Republicans move ahead with plans to repeal major portions of the Affordable Care Act without a replacement plan, according to a CBO report.

Washington Post: “The number of people without insurance would grow to about 32 million within the first decade if congressional Republicans follow a 2015 plan to repeal the health-care law without an alternative, the new report says. It also estimates that health insurance premiums for people buying individual non-group coverage would double within a decade, further complicating GOP promises that people will not lose coverage under their plan.”

Obama Commutes Bulk of Chelsea Manning’s Sentence

President Obama “largely commuted the remaining prison sentence of Chelsea Manning, the army intelligence analyst convicted of an enormous 2010 leak that revealed American military and diplomatic activities across the world, disrupted the administration, and made WikiLeaks, the recipient of those disclosures, famous,” the New York Times reports.

Isolated In Trump Tower

Washington Post: “Trump is a man isolated, increasingly cosseted away from the voters who lifted him to his seemingly improbable victory. He favors his own people and his own places, creating the veneer of accessibility — his tweets reach millions and he still answers his cellphone — while placing himself in almost entirely habitual settings.”

“He spends most of his days in Trump Tower, with few close friends and few meaningful one-on-one interactions beyond the family members, advisers and loyalists who are whisked by gold elevator to his 26th-floor office for private audiences. Trump rarely leaves, not even for a breath of fresh air; nor does he encounter many people he does not already know or who do not work for him.”

LePage Says Lewis Should Thank White Presidents

Maine Gov. Paul LePage (R) said “that the NAACP should apologize to white America, making the comment just hours after he weighed in on the president-elect’s Twitter beef with a civil rights icon, saying U.S. Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) should be grateful,” the Portland Press Herald reports.

Said LePage: “I will just say this: John Lewis ought to look at history. It was Abraham Lincoln who freed the slaves, it was Rutherford B. Hayes and Ulysses S. Grant who fought against Jim Crow laws. A simple thank you would suffice.”

Former ‘Apprentice’ Contestant Sues Trump

“Just days before he’s set to be sworn in as the 45th president of the United States, Donald Trump has been hit with a defamation lawsuit from a former Apprentice contestant who says he engaged in sexually inappropriate contact with her,” according to the Hollywood Reporter.

“Shortly before Election Day, Trump faced a barrage of sexual assault accusations from many women upon a bombshell video showing him boasting to Access Hollywood‘s Billy Bush about grabbing women’s genitals. Sumner Zervos, who appeared on season five of The Apprentice, was one of the accusers. At that time, Trump responded at a rally in Pennsylvania, ‘All of these liars will be sued after the election is over.'”

“Trump never sued. But Zervos hasn’t let go.”

Chaos or Calculated Confusion?

Mike Allen: “Republican heads are spinning. They are dumbfounded by a blizzard of mystifying or contradictory messages coming from Trump.”

“The inside take: Republicans who are hoping/praying things will be fine, and even some Trump insiders, tell us that these comments show he is adjusting more slowly to being president-elect than they had hoped. Even if he believes some or all of this, some things are better kept to yourself when you’re on the precipice of the presidency.”