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Chuck Schumer: Bipartisan Investigation of Russian Hacking Likely

"We have seen repeated efforts by the Trump transition, aided and abetted by Senate Republicans, to jam through nominees in a way that hides their views from the American people", he told reporters Wednesday.

Schumer said Democrats approve of some candidates, such as retired Gen. James Mattis for defense secretary and retired Gen. John Kelly for homeland security, but was unsure whether other nominees would be confirmed.

Meanwhile, the confirmation hearing for Steve Mnuchin as Treasury secretary turned feisty as lawmakers grilled him on his banking career - and bickered over one Republican's joke gone bad.

But alas, the inauguration of Russia's pick did take place, albeit with a speech devoid of Trump's signature raw hate from the campaign and thus, Trump delivered a more civilized speech but one lacking in energy.

The signings were made not long after Trump was sworn in as the 45th president of the United States earlier on Friday.

While Democrats are ready to endorse Trump's generals, they are withholding support from nearly all of Trump's other Cabinet nominees, threatening to slow-walk proceedings on the floor if the president-elect doesn't force his picks to go back to the committees and answer more questions. "In such times, faith in our government, our institutions, and even our country can erode", the Senate Minority Leader said Friday before Trump's inaugural address.

Those nominees include attorney general nominee Jeff Sessions, who faces deep skepticism over his civil rights views and record; Education nominee Betsy DeVos, who underwent aggressive questioning from Democrats Tuesday over her views on education policy and showed a tenuous grasp of some key issues; Health and Human Services nominee Tom Price, a Georgia congressman who is accused of using his legislative post to help companies he had invested in; and Mick Mulvaney, Trump's pick for the Office of Management and Budget, who admitted failing to pay taxes for a domestic employee for four years.

Republicans have repeatedly pointed to the larger number of nominees that Obama got, arguing that Democrats are treating Trump unfairly. Democrats changed the rules of the Senate in 2013 to allow appointments to be approved on simple majority votes, so they can not stop any nominees without Republican help.

But Schumer insisted that Democrats flagged eight or nine nominees early on as some who would need to be subjected to tough hearings due to their wealth, complicated finances, or positions that Democrats find unacceptable.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., spoke of the importance of the American democracy and diversity in what he called "a challenging and tumultuous time". He'll appear before the Senate Finance Committee Thursday. Ben Carson for Department of Housing and Urban Development for the one used for Veterans Affairs nominee David Shulkin's paperwork. "Each senator only got five minutes of questions".

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January 14, 2017
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January 12, 2017
Mulayam to party members: SP will not be allowed to split
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January 12, 2017
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