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The Latest: Transition Team Questions Energy Employees

Friday, 09 Dec 2016 02:36 PM

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

2 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump's transition team is asking Energy Department employees detailed questions about the agency's operations and personnel, requesting a list of employees and contractors who attended international meetings on climate change over the past five years.

The questionnaire also seeks a list of all political appointees and senior executives and asks workers to offer their opinions on who "owns" the department's clean energy mission and other policy goals.

One Energy Department official, who asked not to be named, expressed concern about the 74 questions and said it appears Trump's transition team is targeting officials who have helped implement Obama administration policies on issues from the Iran nuclear deal to the operations of national energy labs.

The Associated Press obtained a copy of the questionnaire, which was first reported by Bloomberg News.

—Matthew Daly

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1:55 p.m.

The U.N. special envoy to Syria says it makes sense that President-elect Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin would work together on Syria, because both have made fighting the Islamic State group a top priority.

Staffan de Mistura spoke to The Associated Press in an interview Friday at the U.N. He plans to meet next week with Trump's transition team.

De Mistura said, "We have heard from the Russians more than once, and from Putin himself, that the last thing he wants is to see the Daesh people returning to the Russian Federation, those who came from there and were trained to fight there." He was using the Arabic acronym for the Islamic State group.

But de Mistura cautions that defeating the group requires a politically inclusive solution for the broader crisis in Syria.

12:50 p.m.

A top aide to President-elect Donald Trump is confirming that former Ford Motor Company CEO Alan Mulally is among those being considered for the job of secretary of state.

In an interview with Fox News, Kellyanne Conway said Mulally met with Trump on Thursday.

Mulally, a longtime Boeing Company executive, was hired as CEO of Ford in 2006. He is widely credited with the company's turnaround. Using a well-timed loan, he helped keep Ford out of bankruptcy during the recession and revitalized the company with new products and technology. He also ended the corporate infighting that had long plagued Ford.

Mulally, 70, retired from Ford in 2014. He now serves on the board of Alphabet Inc., the parent company of Google.

11:20 a.m.

Washington state congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers has emerged as President-elect Donald Trump's top contender to lead the Interior Department.

That's according to a person involved in the transition. Trump's been weighing others for the post, including Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin, but is said to be interested in finding a place for McMorris Rodgers in the administration.

McMorris Rodgers is the only Republican woman with a leadership role on Capitol Hill. As interior secretary, she would oversee the nation's public lands.

The person involved in the transition was not authorized to discuss the internal deliberations and spoke on condition of anonymity.

—By Julie Pace

10:54 a.m.

The Indiana union leader slammed by Donald Trump on Twitter says he's willing to work with the president-elect to protect manufacturing jobs.

United Steelworkers local president Chuck Jones got support Friday at a news conference with several Indiana union officials. Trump tweeted that Jones "has done a terrible job representing workers" at a Carrier Corp. furnace factory in Indianapolis.

That was after Jones said Trump inflated the number of jobs being saved in a Trump-brokered deal to stop some outsourcing to Mexico. Trump said 1,100 jobs were staying, while the deal only prevents about 800 layoffs. Some 550 layoffs are still expected.

Jones says he'd be glad to sit down with Trump if he's sincere about saving American jobs.

3:05 a.m.

President-elect Donald Trump is rallying supporters in Louisiana on Friday ahead of the state's Senate runoff election, aiming to pad the Republican majority he will inherit in the White House.

Trump is campaigning for Republican John Kennedy in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and then making another stop on his "thank you" tour in Grand Rapids, Michigan, a state that helped him prevail against Democrat Hillary Clinton in last month's election.

Republicans will have a narrow 52-48 Senate majority next year if they maintain the Louisiana seat. Trump has backed Kennedy and Vice President-elect Mike Pence campaigned for him last week in New Orleans, saying a Kennedy win would "put an exclamation point at the end of a great American victory in 2016."

© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 
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Friday, 09 Dec 2016 02:36 PM
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