OPERATOR: Please stand by. We're about to begin. Good day and welcome to the transition daily briefing call. Today's call is being recorded.
At this time, I would like to turn the conference over to Mr. Jason Miller and Sean Spicer. Please go ahead.
MILLER: Morning, everyone. And happy Friday. This is Jason Miller. It will just be myself this morning.
Right now, we're 35 days away from inauguration day (inaudible) quickly here. The president-elect will begin his morning with an intelligence briefing with General Flynn, his national security adviser. President-elect Trump will then meet with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson. After this, the president-elect will hold a meeting...
MILLER: ... with singer and songwriter...
MILLER: We started the call.
Continuing, after the meeting with Secretary Jeh Johnson, the president-elect will hold a meeting with singer and songwriter Andrea Bocelli as well as Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, a presidential inauguration adviser. The president-elect will then hold a meeting with the founder of Virtu Financial, Vinny Viola.
And conclusion of meetings for the day, the president-elect and vice president-elect will travel to Orlando, Florida for this evening's Thank You, America rally. It will be held at seven PM at the Central Florida Fairgrounds.
And as a reminder, yesterday, the president-elect made the following announcements; nominated David Friedman as U.S. ambassador to Israeli. Mr. Friedman is a renowned attorney who has been counselor to some of the world's top businessmen and companies. He was one of the president-elect's principal advisers on U.S.-Israel policy during the campaign.
And with Mr. Friedman's nomination, President-elect Trump is expressing his commitment to further enhancing U.S.-Israel relationship, ensuring they'll be extraordinarily -- extraordinary strategic, technological, military and intelligence cooperation between the two countries.
The president-elect also announced yesterday additional members to the executive committee and staff leadership positions for the transition team. That can all be found at greatagain.gov. And the president-elect also announced two key leadership appointments for the NSC. Lieutenant General Keith Kellogg has been appointed as chief of staff and executive secretary of the National Security Council. And Dr. Monica Crowley was appointed as senior director of strategic communications for the NSC.
MILLER: President-elect Trump also announced his intent to nominate Congressman Ryan Zinke of Montana to the position of secretary of the interior. And in addition to all of yesterday's announcements, the president-elect held meetings with Joel Kaplan, Pete Hegseth, Dan Dimicco, Congressman Peter King, John Lavow (ph), the U.S. Conference of Mayors and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.
Looking ahead to tomorrow, at 2 p.m., the president-elect will be arriving at the signature airport in Mobile, Alabama, which will open to the press. For further details, please contact Stephanie Grisham.
Following this, at 3 p.m., the president-elect will hold the final Thank You, America rally for the week in Mobile, Alabama at Ladd Peebles Stadium. After this, the president-elect will head to Mar-a- Lago in Palm Beach, where he will have numerous meetings and also spend the Christmas holiday with his family.
For the vice president-elect, he will be in New York City and Washington D.C. early next week for transition meetings and then returning home to Indiana for the Christmas holiday.
And before we take a few questions, I also want to remind everyone on the call that there will be no call tomorrow or Sunday and we'll pick again on Monday at 10:30 a.m. And I will go to a couple of questions.
OPERATOR: To signal for a question, please press star one on your touchtone telephone. Also, if you are using a speakerphone, please make sure your mute button is turned off to allow your signal to reach our equipment. Once again, it is star one at this time to ask a question. And we'll pause.
And your first question will come from Philip Brasher with AgriPulse.
QUESTION: Yeah, thanks -- thanks for taking my question.
It's now December the 16th, and it was December the 17th eight years ago when the agriculture secretary was -- was named by President-elect Obama. Where -- where are we -- when are we going to get an agriculture secretary nominee?
I wanted to ask you specifically (inaudible) Senator Heitkamp. All our sources tell us that Senator McConnell would very much like to have that Republican seat (ph) and is pushing for her to be nominated. And as you probably know, there's been some pushback from the president-elect's agriculture advisers on that. But when are we -- when are we going to have an ag secretary? And why is it taking so long?
MILLER: Thanks, Phil.
Well, as you can see, the president-elect has been moving at a pretty brisk pace here for having numerous Cabinet nominees. And in fact, we're well ahead of the pace for what we've seen really from any other incoming presidents of the past several decades. And so I think we're -- I believe right now it's either three or four Cabinet picks ahead of (inaudible) President Obama's pace from eight years ago.
So we feel very good about the work the transition team is doing, very good about the work the president-elect is doing and the vice president-elect as well. So I'm gonna need to disagree with the assessment that we're somehow behind the pace on things.
MILLER: Looking ahead to that, yes, there's still a couple of additional Cabinet spots that we have not yet filled. The president- elect is continuing to meet with folks who are highly qualified for these key positions that we talk -- ag secretary (inaudible) very big deal in something that -- as with all these appointments or nominations, the president-elect wants to make sure that he's getting right and he's getting the right person.
I don't have any additional information regarding Senator Heitkamp, but I've said on previous calls that she's obviously very well qualified, has a great deal of leadership experience and familiarity with this particular subject matter. But I would not yet start writing that decisions have or have not been made on that front until we hear directly from the president-elect.
And we'll take our next question here.
OPERATOR: And next, we'll go to Eliot Kleinberg with Palm Beach Post.
QUESTION: Hi, Jason. Can you tell us will Mr. Trump being spending tonight at Mar-a-Lago? And can you say which -- which of the -- which nights in the next couple of weeks he'll be here?
MILLER: Yes. So, as of this -- yes, the president-elect will be at Mar-a-Lago this evening and I would expect him as of this moment to be in Palm Beach for most of, if not all, of this next week. As I said earlier, he'll be taking meetings and then obviously spending Christmas with his family.
And we'll take our next question here.
OPERATOR: And next we'll go to Ron Kampeas with Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
QUESTION: Hi, thank you for taking my question.
MILLER: Hi, Ron.
QUESTION: How are you?
QUESTION: The question I have has to do with David Friedman's nomination. In his -- in his statement -- in the statement, he was quoted as saying that he looks forward to working for the U.S. embassy from Jerusalem. I'm just wondering, have you got a schedule when the embassy would move to Jerusalem? Have you picked out a site? And are you consulting with security folks about any fallouts that such a move might bring?
MILLER: Thank you, Ron, very much. Good question.
This is a commitment that the president-elect made numerous times on the campaign trail that he remains firmly committed to. And with the -- with Mr. Friedman joining the team, obviously this is another like-minded individual who shares the same viewpoint.
I do not have at this time a schedule that I'm going to be able to be able to share about timing on that. I think we're still -- obviously with the -- still being 35 days away from the president- elect being sworn in, it might be a little bit premature since we just announced Mr. Friedman yesterday. We don't have that yet.
But as far as kind of your -- your other questions here, and you know, your -- the other questions that -- you know that we have (ph) I'm sure will be answered in due time.
OPERATOR: And that concludes our question and answer session.
I'll turn it back to Jason Miller for any closing comments.
MILLER: No, that's it. Have a great weekend, everyone.
OPERATOR: That concluded today's conference. Thank you for your participation.