Minnesota politics - commentary, blogs and multimedia | StarTribune.com

Inaugural cheers, fireworks: Trump sweeps in for his big day

Vice President-elect Mike Pence, left, and his wife Karen, second from left, applaud as President-elect Donald Trump and his wife Melania arrive for a VIP reception and dinner with donors, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017, in Washington.

With fireworks heralding his big moment, Donald Trump swept into Washington Thursday on the eve of his presidential inauguration and pledged to unify a nation sorely divided and clamoring for change. The capital braced for an onslaught of crowds and demonstrators — with all the attendant hoopla and hand-wringing.

Franken, Perry share awkward 'Saturday Night Live soundbite' moment

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee member Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn. laughs as he asks questions of and jokes with Energy Secretary-designate, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017, at Perry's confirmation hearing before the committee.

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry is known for making verbal gaffes, and he lived up to that reputation when questioned by Sen. Al Franken during his confirmation hearing.

Intercepted Russian communications are part of inquiry into Trump associates

Paul Manafort on July 19, 2016 on the floor of the Quicken Loans Arena at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. Manafort is among at least three Trump campaign advisers whose possible links to Russia are under scrutiny.

U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies also are looking at financial transactions as part of the probe.

Roberts, target of Trump jabs, meeting Trump at Capitol

Donald Trump and John Roberts are not likely to rehash Trump's criticism of the chief justice when they meet outside the Capitol at noon.

Another inaugural tradition _ prayer _ under fire over Trump

For years, the Washington National Cathedral, an Episcopal parish with a dual role as a civic gathering place, has hosted a prayer service for the newly sworn-in president. But keeping the tradition this year has caused an uproar among Episcopalians opposed to President-elect Donald Trump.

Timeline of inauguration events Friday

10 promises Trump made for his first day

Behind in the polls in late October, Donald Trump ventured to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, to give American voters a "contract" detailing what he would achieve during his first day in office. Beneath a list of 18 major actions was the flourish of Trump's familiar signature and a blank space for voters to sign.


House Taxes Committee considers tax cut on premium cigars
Hot Dish Politics

Rep. Jim Nash, R-Waconia, called it a "crushing" tax on local purveyors of fine cigars and their customers.

Franken to vote against Trump education secretary nominee
Hot Dish Politics

Sen. Franken to vote against Education Secretary nominee


Mexican drug kingpin "El Chapo" to appear in US courtroom

Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, one of the world's most notorious drug kingpins, is finally headed for a court date the United States sought for two decades while he made brazen prison escapes and spent years on the run in Mexico.


Despite campaign to-do list, Trump team coy about his plans

Donald Trump campaigned on a detailed and extensive to-do list for his first day in office. A day before his swearing-in, his team was being coy about when and how he plans to cross items off it.


Solange Knowles headlines progressive 'Peace Ball'

The main attraction, Solange Knowles, didn't hit the stage until close to midnight, but the 3,000 or so enthusiastic guests packed into the National Museum of African American History and Culture weren't going anywhere.


Protesters planning to disrupt Donald Trump's big day

Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to fill the nation's capital for the inauguration of Donald Trump, and while the majority of those expected in Washington on Friday will be there to celebrate, some protesters say their plan is to do their best to disrupt the day.


Analysis: Trump to take oath of office amid deep uncertainty

Just before noon, Donald Trump will stand in front of the U.S. Capitol, place his hand on Abraham Lincoln's Bible and take the oath of office as the next president of the United States.


Inauguration Day: Trump to become America's 45th president

Donald Trump, a real estate mogul and reality television star who upended American politics and energized voters angry with Washington, will be sworn in Friday as the 45th president of the United States, putting Republicans in control of the White House for the first time in eight years.


Actors, mayors rally at inauguration eve Trump demonstration

Actors Robert De Niro, Sally Field and Mark Ruffalo joined hundreds of other people outside a Donald Trump building on Thursday for a pre-inauguration demonstration organizers said was meant to energize those concerned about the Republican president-elect's policies.


For many, President Obama delivered on his promise of hope

As the Obama presidency came to an end this week and with it, Barack Obama’s tenure as the nation’s first black president, a group of…


Protesters, Trump supporters clash outside 'DeploraBall'

Protesters and supporters of President-elect Donald Trump clashed outside a pro-Trump event in Washington the night before his inauguration. Police used chemical spray on some protesters in an effort to control the unruly crowd.


Jackpot! Vegas looks to score big win by landing Raiders

First the NHL's Vegas Golden Knights. Soon, maybe, the Las Vegas Raiders.