Transition Tracker: Hot rhetoric and cold feet

Obama to Republicans: 'If it works, I'm for it'
Obama to Republicans: 'If it works, I'm for it'


    Obama to Republicans: 'If it works, I'm for it'


Obama to Republicans: 'If it works, I'm for it' 01:37

A CNN roundup of what you need to know about the presidential transition today

Washington (CNN)To close out the first work week of 2017, GOP hand wringing and another POTUS exit interview lead the way. Two more Republican senators in the last 24 hours are sounding the alarm that repealing Obamacare without a replacement plan in place may not be good for the health of the GOP ... much less the country. But will it stop them from voting for a repeal? That may be a step too far. Meanwhile, President Barack Obama says he's ready to give Republicans credit and offer his full support if his political rivals prescribe a better health care program.


  • Sens. Corker and Cotton are the latest GOPers to warn against repeal without replace. Here's a wrap of the GOP's early stumbling blocks on repeal. With a narrow 52-48 majority, and potential defections from Rand Paul, Lisa Murkowski, and Susan Collins, Republicans need Cotton on board to pass the repeal.
    • Republican leaders are pushing hard to defund Planned Parenthood, but the move might hurt their efforts to repeal Obamacare. Planned Parenthood also delivered 86,739 petitions to Speaker Ryan's office opposing the move, while 37 Democratic Senators sent a letter to Ryan urging him to "cease 'harmful, partisan' path toward defunding Planned Parenthood."
    • A Donald Trump-voting Obamacare enrollee in Florida shares his worries with CNN's Sanjay Gupta.
    • A new Kaiser Family Foundation poll shows Americans are split over whether Trump can deliver on his promises of better and more affordable healthcare.


    Several developments today...
    • Asked about Mexico paying for it, Sen. Orrin Hatch told CNN's Manu Raju late Friday, "I doubt that they're going to pay for it."
    • A number of immigration activist groups have called for a "National Day of Action" on January 14 to protest potential Trump immigration policies. They plan on holding demonstrations in 20 states plus DC.
    • The Wall Street Journal reports on conservative immigrations groups pressuring Trump to create an immigration position for hard-liner Kris Kobach.


    Bloomberg profiled an obscure and very conservative group, the Institute for Energy Research, which was founded by a former Enron exec, and its advocacy arm the American Energy Alliance, which is led by a former Koch Industries lobbyist, that has taken an outsized role in shaping Trump's environmental and energy policies.


    New Republican Study Committee Chairman, Mark Walker (R-NC), told CSPAN that Congress will not grant Trump a blank check for his infrastructure plan, The Hill reports.


    According to the CBO, tax breaks cost the U.S. at least $1.5 trillion in potential revenue in 2016.


    • MONDAY -- OBAMACARE -- HHS Secy. Burwell will give a speech at the National Press Club in which she will "focus on the main tenets of health care reform and will address the consequences for the American people of undoing the progress that's been made."
    • TUESDAY -- Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions kicks off confirmation hearings. He is one of the eight cabinet picks that Democrats have targeted. At 9pm, President Obama delivers his farewell address at McCormick Place in Chicago. He is likely to tout accomplishments and possibly deliver warnings about changes on some of these issues. Tune into CNN for live, primetime coverage.
    • WEDNESDAY -- INFRASTRUCTURE AND EVERYTHING -- Trump is supposed to hold his first formal press conference since the election. Many of these policy issues are sure to come up, and it will be interesting to hear Trump answer these questions as President-elect. Also, among six nomination hearings that day is Transportation nominee Elaine Chao at 10:15am where we can expect some infrastructure discussion.