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Trump to Attend Morning Prayer Service; Trump Signs Order to Undercut ObamaCare; Hundreds of thousands to Join Women's Marches; Women's Marches Coast to Coast Today; Thousands Expected at Women's March in Boston; Thousands Protest at "Sister March" in London; Trump's First 2 Cabinet Posts Confirmedl Women's Marches In U.S., Around World; Trump Inauguration Sparks Swift Global Reaction; Trump Signs Executive Order On Obamacare; President Trump's First 100 Days. Aired 9-10a ET
Aired January 21, 2017 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning and thanks very much for joining us from Washington, D.C. the U.S capital. I'm Wolf Blitzer. We want to welcome our viewers here in the United States and around the world.
Donald Trump, his campaign defied tradition and rewrote history. But this hour, he'll honor a custom that dates back to George Washington. The newly installed president will attend a prayer service here in Washington at the National Cathedral. You're looking at live pictures right now. It's the only scheduled event on his first full day in office as president of the United States. He had been in office only hours last night when he delivered his first blow to ObamaCare, the Affordable Care Act as it's known.
He signed an executive order that empowers federal agency to effectively gut the law even before Congress moves to formally repeal it. Also this morning, hundreds of thousands will be marching here in Washington. Indeed, around the country and around the world. They say they are deeply worried about the Trump White House and its potential impact on women's rights and civil liberties.
And we are recovering all of it from the policies to protests. But let's begin over at the White House. CNN's Athena Jones is
joining us with the very latest. Athena?
ATHENA JONES, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Good morning Wolf. President Trump soon after taking the oath of office said in his inaugural address the time for empty talk is over, now comes the hour of action, now arrives the hour of action. And he did take several actions within the few hours of taking the oath of office. Among those actions as you mentioned, the signing of an executive order dealing with ObamaCare.
Now, that executive order does not change the law. What it does though is it directs agencies to interpret the regulations of the law as loosely as allowed in order to try to minimize the financial burden on individuals, on health care providers, on insurers and the like. That means agencies can waive or defer, grant exemptions from or delay implementation of provisions and requirements of ObamaCare that cause a burdens. So this is President Trump showing that he was serious about his promise to take action against ObamaCare on day one.
Another action his administration took yesterday, Chief of Staff Reince Priebus issued a memo calling on agencies to freeze work on recent regulations that haven't yet taken effect. This is a pretty common move from incoming administrations. President Obama's chief of staff in 2009 and President Bush's chief of staff in 2001 issued identical memos.
And one more action I want to talk about that the president took yesterday that isn't exactly in line with his populous message. The president suspended a mortgage premium rate cut for homeowners. So that means less money in the pockets of mortgage holders. So, another interesting move among several on that busy, busy first day in office. We expect the day to be a little less busy as you mentioned. Back to you Wolf.
BLITZER: We'll see what happens today, tomorrow, Monday. Presumably, there will be a lot going on as well. Athena, thank you.
Let's go over to the National Cathedral here in Washington right now. That's where President Trump will attend an inaugural prayer service. The long held tradition allows the incoming president to pause, to reflect on the momentous burden he now carries. Our Senior Washington Correspondent Jeff Zeleny is over at the cathedral for us with more. Set the scene for us Jeff.
JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPODENT: Good morning Wolf. President Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence is making there way across town here to the Washington National Cathedral. This is an Episcopal cathedral but today, it's an interfaith service that will be under way inside. And I just came from inside there and the seats are filling up from Trump supporters but also a mix of denominations Wolf. And this is the program here that people will get. And just flipping through here, there really is a diversity of prayer we're going to hear this morning when this service starts in about an hour's time.
There's going to be a Muslim call to prayer, a Jewish call to prayer. There are some evangelical supporters and ministers who supported Donald Trump on the campaign trail who will be speaking here, as well as the archbishop of the Washington Diocese Wolf. So, this is an inter denominational service. Not without controversy. Some members of this parish asked to have this canceled but the dean of the parish said it is important to not support President Trump only but to pray for him and set a good example here Wolf.
So, this is not going -- this is going to be a moment where we're not going to hear from President Trump himself. He and his wife Melania and the Pences will be seating inside listening to this reflections or so. It will take about an hour to 75 minutes time.
[09:05:00] It also gives President Trump a chance to see a little bit more of Washington. And Wolf, this is a historic building as you know so well. Three state funerals have been held inside. President Woodrow Wilson is actually buried inside this church here. So a moment of history for Donald Trump before he begins his first full day in office. Wolf? BLITZER: And it's significant Jeff, as you point out, the Imam Mohamed Magid, the executive Imam of the Adams Center in Sterling, Virginia, outside of Washington, he will be participating with prayers as well, right?
ZELENY: He will indeed. And that is something that really speaks to how much of the interfaith and traditional service this is. Wolf, this has happened the morning after the inauguration for every president beginning with George Washington, not all here at this Cathedral because Cathedral this took almost a century to build. It was actually completed just in the early 1990s, but this is a diverse moment of prayer that we will see President Trump arrive here in just about an hour Wolf.
BLITZER: We'll have coverage of that as well. All right. Thanks very much Jeff Zeleny over at the National Cathedral.
Meanwhile, thousands of women are already converging on the nation's capital are preparing for their march on Washington. They're protesting President Trump's policies, demanding equal rights for women. This is an event that began with a fairly modest call to action on Facebook right after the November 8th election. It could become though one of the largest political demonstrations in Washington. And it's not just in Washington, it's in fact coast to coast, around the country, continent to continent, in fact around the world.
More than 600 sister marches as they're being called are planned around the country and in fact around the world. CNN is covering several of these marches, including ones in New York, Boston, and London. Let's begin with CNN's Kyung Lah, she's here in Washington. The women and a lot of men, they're just getting started here where you are, Kyung.
KYUNG LAH, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It hasn't officially been started yet but these crowds started gathering at 6:00 a.m. Eastern Time Wolf. You can hear them singing. It' s a very friendly audience. And I want you to take a look at the size of this crowd.
For some perspective, we're in the shadow of the capital and this is just one section, just one small section of this entire crowd. Jordan (?) is going to take a sweep of this entire crowd. Look over to your right and then, as he continues to sweep, again, this is just one part of the stage. The entire area stretches much, much further.
And I've also want to give you a look at the diversity of this crowd. These ladies over here, they marched in the 1970s when women were really fighting for equal rights. So, they are marching again. A lot of young girls who are here. I saw a woman carrying her child. And you can see from their faces here, it's a very, very friendly crowd.
But they say that this is very urgent for them, that they want Washington to see the crowd here and hear their voice. Their voices are for a number of issues, a number of platforms. But the most important is that they want the president's attention. Wolf?
BLITZER: And tell us about the pink caps that so many of the women are wearing.
LAH: OK. Let's take a look at some of these hats. You can see what this woman has done is, if you can spin for me, this is something that really is a viral sensation. And so Wolf, what we've been seeing is a lot of these women are wearing these hats because they've knitted them themselves. It began as something that they could pull the map off of the pattern of social. And then, you can see for yourself again as we take a look at these crowd, a lot of women here are wearing these caps and men frankly.
BLITZER: Kyung Lah in the middle of it. Kyung, we'll be going to getting back to you. Thank you very much. CNN's Brynn Gingras has been traveling with a group of women headed here to the Washington from New York for the march. Brynn is joining is now. What are the women you've been talking to saying about all of this?
BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well Wolf, right now, there's a (inaudible) of anticipation building. We left New York Union Square about 5 o'clock this morning. We're now about an hour outside of D.C we just took a quick rest stop but everybody can feel that we're getting closer and closer especially they're talking to friends in D.C now already at the festivities.
But yeah, there's a lot of people who haven't even met each other on this bus behind me but getting to know each other, getting to talk about why they felt compelled to come. And the story that can tell you are just deeply personal. I just talked to a woman not too long of those said she was in D.C in 1963 there when Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous speech, marched in the civil rights movement. Went back to D.C for two other marches, this will now be her fourth time going to D.C for a march. She said this one is the most important. Why does she say that Wolf? She said because the other marches, those are about issues. This one is about protecting America, America's values.
[09:10:04] This woman right here next to me, Carolyn (?), this is the offices back term. She's only been said this will be your first march. And she said the reason she's going is because she wants to be against hate. She's want her voice heard. And that's what we're hearing just from this small group of women and we know that that diversity, all these personal reasons are what we're going to experience once we get to D.C of course again, an hour away. But very excited group women and some men, fiances and boyfriends here joining as well Wolf.
BLITZER: All right Brynn on that bus as you point our only an hour away from here in Washington. We'll check back with you as well. In the president's hometown, thousands are expected to march from the United Nations building to Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue. Our Correspondent Jessica Schneider is joining us from New York City with more on that. What are you seeing Jessica?
JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well Wolf, President Trump maybe in Washington, D.C. but his tower right here in Manhattan remains the focal point for the women's march. People are already going by us. I'll give you a look at some of the crowd here. These are the harmonicas -- harmonics I should say, the woman's group who will be singing out here. And these are some of the people who are gathered. This march will all starts here at the United Nations and then, they'll head uptown about 10 blocks and over a few avenues to Trump Tower. Of course, that's where they'll be all gathering throughout the day today.
This march takes off in waves, starting at 11:00 a.m. and goes throughout the day. Of course, this isn't just about the women out here. These groups are inviting anybody, men, women, children, anyone of any gender or race. They say that this message as it all throughout the country. It's all about equality, maintaining civil rights. They say they want to get that message to President Trump. He's down in Washington, but they'll be taking their message to Trump Tower right here in Manhattan. Wolf?
BLITZER: All right. Jessica, we'll be watching closely together with you. The march in Boston is the second largest outside of Washington, D.C. We're told Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts is expected to speak there. CNN's Miguel Marquez is in Boston for us with more. Miguel, set the scene there.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORREPONDENT: Yeah. Look, they're expecting over a 100,000 people. They are expecting 25,000 at first and now, they're expecting over a 100,000. There's about a thousand people here already, give you a little sense of what's happening here.
This is the main stage. People are gathering throughout this area. And if you look around, you can see those pink hats everywhere just like these individuals here. People are coming from all over New England. They have over a 100 buses bringing people from all over New England.
They have -- the oldest marcher I can tell you is expected to be 96 years old. It's a fairly short march around Boston. But they consider this as a first effort, a first nationwide committee meeting essentially to put the president and the Trump administration on notice that they're watching, they're organizing, and this is only the first step. Wolf?
BLITZER: All right, Miguel Marquez is in Boston for us. Miguel thank you. The women's march on Washington is in fact spreading overseas, London, Paris, Sydney, Hong Kong, all holding their own rallies. CNN's Nina Dos Santos is in London now for us with the latest there. How is it going Nina in London?
NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yeah. Hi there Wolf. Well, I'm in London's Trafalgar Square at the end of the two mile route that this people have taken from the U.S embassy to this key landmark. And as you can see here, there's a lot of people converging upon the streets. It's estimated that thousands of people who have joined up to this march. And there's still said to be thousands who are making their way through towards the stage here as you can see. Well, later on, we've got pop stars and celebrities who are going to be having a concert and having speeches and so on and so forth. It is a women's march taking place in tandem with the events in the United State but just as you are pointing out earlier Wolf, there aren't just women present here I'd say and it (inaudible) there at least 40 (inaudible) and 50 percent at male attendance. Some of the men also wearing those famous pink hats as you can see some of these ladies in the crowd behind me are, too. And there's many generations who are here as well. Lot of people have brought their children. Some people have even brought their pets. Yes, they're protesting against divisive political rhetoric in the United States during this electoral cycle but they're also protesting against local issues like Brexit as well, Wolf.
BLITZER: And what are you hearing? I know you're speaking to a lot of the folks who are there in London. What are they saying about the new American president?
DOS SANTOS: Well, there's a lot of USA patriots as well who are here present among the crowd today. A lot of them also talking about the divisive rhetoric, perhaps veins of misogyny they were saying, quote unquote during this political campaign. Really here in London, people are saying they want this to be a celebration of women's rights and other people's right, everybody's right, LGBT rights and so on and so forth. But, there's other issues as well that people have come in great numbers to try and highlight, too, proliferation of nuclear weapons, for instance.
[09:15:02] DOS SANTOS: As I mentioned, Brexit because Brexit is being a hugely divisive topic here and Donald Trump's relationship with the U.K. will help also shape that debate from here. So many things people are saying and many things people are also saying about Donald Trump, a lot of them I should point out are in some of the signs that we're seeing in the crowd too, Wolf.
BLITZER: Yeah we see the crowds on the left part of the screen in Paris, the right part of the screen in London. Nina, we'll get back to you as well. Nina Dos Santos reporting.
Still to come, signed, sealed, and delivering a first blow to ObamaCare. More on the president's first moves in the Oval Office.
And moments from now, Donald Trump is kicking off his first full day on the job at a national prayer service. The president will be there with his family, we'll be there as well. Our special coverage continues right after this.
BLITZER: Women and a lot of men, they are marching, they are protesting the new Trump presidency here in Washington. You see crowds beginning to develop. The demonstrations will begin shortly. In Boston, huge crowds are there and overseas as well, in Paris and London. Thousands and thousands of people have gathered. We're going to have extensive coverage of all of this coming up.
Meanwhile, just hours after Donald Trump took the oath of office, the U.S. Senate approved two of his cabinet picks. Retired Marine General James Mattis, he will be the defense secretary, and Retired Marine General John Kelly will be the secretary of Homeland Security. Both men confirmed with ease, they were sworn in last night by the new Vice-President Mike Pence. But there are many Trump cabinet positions still unfilled as well as the critically important CIA director position as well.
Let's go to CNN's Sunlen Serfaty, she's up on Capitol Hill. Sunlen, the Senate has certainly has a lot of work to do.
SUNLEN SERFATY CNN CORRESPONDENT: They certainly do, Wolf. There has -- as you know, there's been a lot of back and forth and fighting on Capitol Hill about the pace of all of these confirmations. You have Senate Democrats who are trying to slow things down and the Trump administration saying look, they need their cabinet in place here. There has been some small agreement overnight about a way forward on a few of them.
[09:20:00] On Monday, two things to look out for. Leadership reached an agreement where they will now have six hours of open debate on Mike Pompeo, he is Trump's pick to be CIA director. And then they'll hold a confirmation vote. And on Rex Tillerson, Trump's nominee for Secretary of State, he will get a committee vote on Monday. That is expected to be very, very close.
So some small movement going into next week but it's very notable that Trump is in his first few days of office left with only having two members of its cabinet in place. This is far short of what he had wanted, and far fewer than President Obama had on his inauguration day. So Trump sending some very specific words to the Senate in a statement that he issued last night saying, quote, I call on members of the Senate to fulfill their constitutional obligation and swiftly confirm the remainder of my highly qualified cabinet nominees so that we can get to work on behalf of the American people without further delay. So this sets up such a critical and important week on Capitol Hill, Wolf, for the incoming Trump administration.
BLITZER: It will be critically important indeed. All right, Sunlen, thank you very much.
It was a busy first few hours in the White House for President Trump. Trump signing executive order on one of his top campaign promises, dismantling ObamaCare, also welcoming his first two cabinet members, General James Mattis and John Kelly who will lead the Department of Defense and Homeland Security. They were overwhelmingly nearly unanimous as far as Mattis is concerned, nearly unanimous among the 100 members of the Senate, the confirmation of him and General Kelly also getting a decisive majority as well.
Here to discuss this and more, CNN Politics Director David Chalian, CNN Presidential Historian Tim Naftali, CNN Political Analyst, Daily Beast Washington Bureau Chief Jackie Kucinich, and Chicago Sun Times Washington Bureau Chief Lynn Sweet. David, how much of the fight can the Democrats really put up in resisting these cabinet nominations?
DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Well, not much of a fight in terms of the end result. Most of these people, if not all of them, are going to have these jobs at the end of the day, because the Republicans have the votes. The one I think where that may still be up for discussion is Rex Tillerson for the big Secretary of State job because we haven't seen Marco Rubio, John McCain, Lindsey Graham come on board yet. There may be enough there to cause some potential trouble for the Tillerson nomination. But all in all, the Republicans have the votes.
But what the Democrats believe they have here is an opportunity to layout their message in opposition at the start of this administration. To layout in each of these policy areas, identified maybe five or six of the nominees now that they really want to target and make a message argument again. Because, again, it's not about stopping the confirmation again, it is about setting the boundaries of debate on these issues going forward.
BLITZER: But even if you have two or three or four Republicans who are resisting, let's say Rex Tillerson to be the Secretary of State, there are some Democrats who might go ahead and vote to confirm, especially Democrats from states that Donald Trump won decisively in the election, who themselves, these Senators, are up for re-election in two years.
CHALIAN: Yeah. Those senators, I think there are about 10 of them Democrats that are up in Trump states. They're going to be -- I would imagine people who get a lot of attention from Reince Priebus and Jared Kushner, and Steve Bannon in the months ahead, you're right. I think there's going to be a reservoir of moderate Democratic senators from conservative states that are going to feel the pressure of the Trump support. But, remember, Donald Trump is not coming in right now with some huge sense of tail winds and wind in his back, not a big approval rating now. So I'm not sure that pressure is there right now that they feel they have to be on board with Trump.
BLITZER: Jackie, in his first executive orders, the president yesterday signed an executive order to scale back ObamaCare, the Affordable Care Act, at least taking an initial step. It's not a formal repeal, certainly not a replace, but it's an initial step. Is that strictly symbolic?
JACKIE KUCINICH, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Part of it is but one of the things this could end up producing is granting waivers against the individual mandate which could set, which could really set the whole system off kilter because that's how it pays for a lot of the things Republicans like. So that is where this could really kind of gum up the gears and/or start something that's already complicated and make it even more complicated and start problems before they even have a replacement.
And so it really depends on whether this affects people's care, whether this affects the -- because it is going to affect the insurance companies. So it really is -- it's a interesting decision by the Trump campaign.
BLITZER: And historically, Tim, obviously historians for years to come will look at that first day and make some decisions about what he was trying to achieve. TIM NAFTALI, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Well Wolf, he said in his inaugural speech that, you know, the time of action has arrived. I'm paraphrasing. This is a way of saying, even before Congress can figure out how to replace ObamaCare --
BLITZER: How to even repeal it too.
[09:25:08] NAFTALI: -- I'm going to stop enforcing it. I mean, this -- what's amazing here is what the U.S. government is saying is we're not going to enforce -- there can't be legal violation, you can't break the law. But there are so many regulations that affect ObamaCare, we're not going to enforce those regulations anymore.
CHALIAN: Or at least we're going to interpret them in the most lax way possible.
NAFTALI: Which means plans that would not have followed ObamaCare's stipulations, for example, pre-existing conditions. Those plans are not going to be -- no one is going to be taken to court now. So it's creating this uncertainty in the insurance market. And the problem for them I think is that they don't know the effect that this is going to have.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right.
NAFTALI: Will the insurance market start to shut down before there's a replacement? So how will historians look at this. On the one hand, brilliant in terms of rhetoric. Because the sign is, I'm in power and I promised you, unlike the Republican Congress, I'm actually going to deliver. What we're going to have to wait and see is the chaos, possible chaos that this is going to create. So this is much more than just rhetoric and the effect of it will take time for us to really digest.
BLITZER: Because Lynn, you remember, we all covered the campaign. During the campaign, Donald Trump as a candidate would always say, on day one, I'm going to do this, I'm going to do this. There was a lot of decisive action he was about to take. But now that he is president of the United States, there's a little bit of a pause.
LYNN SWEET, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF, CHICAGO SUN TIMES: It takes a lot more than signing a piece of paper in this executive order. And I want to amplify what everyone had said. The main central part of this promise is they're paying too much on your deductibles and you're paying too much for your policy.
When you start putting the uncertainty in the market, and I read that executive order because I'm sure you didn't just so people everyone know, basically it is an ability to have in the broadest language possible any official void any requirement to do anything. And if you think this will drive prices down soon for people or address a deductible you think is too high, I don't see how the insurance industry (inaudible) and it's like we're not fronting for them. OK, but we all -- everyone is on the receiving end of this. I don't see how this will drive down prices, get people to keep their coverage. So insurance is a big part of the economy. By going this approach, by adding more uncertainty to an industry they already knew it faced changes, with changes in the ObamaCare law, I want to see if he can pull this off. No one here seems to think that, right?
BLITZER: And David, we're showing viewers our live pictures here in Washington. A lot of women and men, they've come, they're wearing those pink hats. They're here, they're demonstrating for women's rights, for civil rights. There's a lot of issues that are on the table right now. And they're trying to make a statement.
Let's say Donald Trump is watching these demonstrations in Washington, in Boston, in Chicago. All over the world. In fact in London, in Paris, in Sydney, Australia and other places as well. I'm sure he's looking at this and saying to himself what?
CHALIAN: He's saying to himself probably, I want to get on with things. I don't think this -- if Donald Trump is wise, he's going to go to that national prayer service this morning, he's going to keep his head focused on his mission. Yesterday was his day. As he said, it's time to get to work.
Today, we see the opposition in full force. The resistance. We know that he, you know, did not win popular vote. There's a large swathe of the country out there who are very concerned about the Trump presidency. Today, they get to express that out in force and numbers. Donald Trump would be wise not to get distracted by that I think since he clearly has a different task in front of him right now.
BLITZER: And this is not the first time there have been demonstrations here in the United States as a new president takes office.
NAFTALI: (Inaudible) in our money in 2020, we're going to have the symbol of one great (inaudible). In 1913, there was a woman's march, a suffrage march the day before Woodrow Wilson's inauguration in March of 1913. That's the first great if you will counter inaugural march.
But I want to stress something else. Yesterday, President Trump talked about the people. He didn't define the people except the American people. Today the American people are speaking. It may not be the people he was speaking to, but it's the American people. So what we're seeing is, don't define, let's not define populism one way or the other.
Yesterday, he had an opportunity to give us a broad view of populism. There's a lot of populism in America. And you're going to see some of it today in the streets.
SWEET: Tim, may I underscore that? I covered -- we all have, a lot of demonstrations and the people could see behind us, we have a view. This is extraordinary to see this happening because this is kind of organically organized. This has not been months in the making. This doesn't have a lot of professional organizers who have been putting on a stream of press conferences. So just like we might have missed, we press at large all the people who are coming to the Trump rallies early on, maybe this is the other side.
[09:30:09] KUCINICH: And we'll see if this continues. I mean, that's the test, right? Because I remember when the Tea Party Movement was forming and you saw it. It start at Town Hall and then all of a sudden they were in front of the Capitol and they were here all the time and they were marching, and they created a political movement that now is very much in charge. So it really will be interesting to see as the year goes on if they can organize, if this is something that becomes very much part of the political climate.
BLITZER: Guys, everybody stand by David, Tim and Jackie and Lynn. We have much more coming up. We're also getting ready to hear at the national cathedral, there were be a prayer service there. President Trump set to leave the White House for the National Prayer Service at the National Cathedral only moments from now. We'll have extensive live coverage of that.
And following thousands and thousands of people who are already here, getting ready to march in Washington. What can the new president do to heal a major divide? We'll be right back.
BLITZER: Welcome back to our special coverage. Take a look at this. We're looking at some live pictures coming in from Boston and London. More from live pictures coming from Paris and elsewhere around the world that men and women their packing the streets here in Washington as well.
The march in fact is happening all over the country, all over the world. More than 600 so-called sister marches have been planned around the country, including in places like Boston, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and cities elsewhere. And there are many other marches planned and under way already around the world.
Let's go to Boston once again. Miguel Marquez is there. This is going to be one of the largest marches in Boston where you are Miguel.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, this is meant to be the second largest march after Washington, D.C. with organizers first started putting this thing together, they expected 25,000 people to show up.
Today they say they expect over 100,000 people. They're pouring in here. Want to give you an idea what's going on here. You can see all of the pink hats. That has become a very strong sign of this movement, the beginning of the movement they say. Also they mention that there are hundreds of different groups throughout the Boston area that -- are participating, not just women's groups. One story like these individuals from Vermont and from New Hampshire, they hadn't seen each other 12 years, and they made connections, they came down here. Old friends who are getting back together.
[09:35:06] One thing people say at this march, this is about organizing today and going forward. They say this is the first step toward a larger organization to keep the Trump administration on its toes. Wolf?
BLITZER: All right Miguel, thank you. We'll get back to you in Boston.
Now, Donald Trump's inauguration also drawing swift in a time sharp reaction around the world as protesters make their voices heard. In London, the Guardian taking a line from Trump's speech and his vowed to make America first.
There you see the cover right there. In Italy, headlines ranging from he is super Trump to, quote, we are thinking only of America. And in Russian newspapers, proclaiming a jump into the unknown as Americans meet the new leader with controversial views.
Some of the headlines coming in from Moscow. Let's go to Moscow right now. That's where we find Senior International correspondent Clarissa Ward. Clarissa, in general from the Kremlin, from the Russian government, what has been the reaction so far?
CLARISSA WARD, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, so far I think the reaction is pretty positive, Wolf. I mean, the Kremlin is definitely taking a measured tone, but we did hear from the spokesperson today that President Putin will be reaching out to President Trump to congratulate him over the phone in the coming days, and that they're already considering when a meeting might be appropriate between the two world leaders, although he said that would likely take place in the coming months and not the coming weeks.
But the mood here as I said is definitely positive. We heard one Russian lawmaker who was a big part of the Russian T.V. inauguration coverage throughout the night. He took to Twitter and wrote after Mr. Trump's inauguration, his meeting with President Putin will be the most important event in world politics, a defining moment in history. You can see there's a sense that it could be a potential new partnership, a potential new world order, Wolf.
Now, of course as you mention, certainly not everybody internationally is celebrating. Quite to the contrary, we're seeing protests taking place in cities across the globe. In terms of world leaders, we've seen a lot of the traditional boiler plate notes of congratulations which are to be expected, but I do think, Wolf, that there's a deep sense of anxiety, and "The Guardian" headline isolated it.
From now on, America only first. World leaders are now watching and waiting very closely to see how President Trump will engage with the rest of the world and to what extent America will really continue to lead the rest of the world. So a lot of anxiety and apprehension. But here in Moscow, sort of measured but positive attitude. Wolf?
BLITZER: Measured but positive. Clarissa, was there any specific reaction in Moscow to the inaugural address the new president delivered yesterday?
WARD: There hasn't been officially a specific reaction. What everybody keeps saying from the Kremlin is that it is too early to see what the policies will actually be, but I think unofficially there's definitely a sense that they like the tone that they're hearing from President Donald Trump, they like the notes of nationalism. The like those notes of populism. And there really is a belief among some that perhaps President Putin and President Trump together could start together a carving out new world order a new ideology as we move forward. Wolf?
BLITZER: Clarissa Ward in Moscow for us. Clarissa, thank you.
Still to come. Any moment now, the new President will be on his way to the National Prayer Service here in Washington. You're looking at live pictures from the National Cathedral in Washington. The President will be leaving the White House with his family and the vice president and the vice president's family as well. They'll be heading over to the National Cathedral. This is a tradition for every new American president.
[09:39:18] Also coming up, very different story. Dozens of Democrats boycotted his inauguration. But what will it take for them to actually work with the new American president. Democratic Congressman Luis Gutierrez, his next.
BLITZER: Marchers have gathered all over the country in deed around world. We got the pictures coming in from here in Washington, D.C., in Boston, thousands of people have gathered already in London as well. All of this happening on the first full day for the new American president.
I want to quickly go over to the National Cathedral here in Washington, D.C. That's where President Trump will attend an inaugural prayer service that's coming up shortly, a long held tradition allows an incoming American president to pause and reflect on the momentous burden that he now carries.
Our Senior Washington correspondent Jeff Zeleny is on the scene for us there. Jeff, once again I take it the Vice President Mike Pence, his almost there, about to arrive?
JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: He is indeed, Wolf. Vice President Mike Pence will be arriving here at the National Cathedral very shortly. And it is a short trip for him, Wolf. He also spent the first night at his new home, that's the naval observatory here in northwest Washington really just a few blocks from the National Cathedral here.
And Mike Pence will be arriving. And he'll be followed a short time later by Donald Trump and Melania Trump and other members of the Trump family. And Wolf, we've been watching people arrive here at the church are really for the last hour or so, filling up. This is a very historic cathedral, place in history. And Mike Pence will be taking his position here, followed by Donald Trump for this interfaith service, scheduled to start Wolf, at the top of the hour.
BLITZER: And almost all the faiths are being represented, during the course of the service, right? ZELENY: Indeed, Wolf. We are going to hear Muslim prayer, a Jewish prayer, a Catholic prayer and other things. They'll be reading from the book of Romans. This is really an interfaith service and we are not going to hear from any politicians at this. We're not going to hear from the President or Vice President, at least they're not scheduled to speak.
This is a moment of song, prayer and listening. And Wolf, as we have seen the protests here in Washington and around the world as well, he should also point out that there was some controversy here as well about the decision to allow this to happen here, but the reverend here at the National Cathedral says they're praying for Donald Trump and trying to show a message and lesson for the country as well here with this interfaith service, Wolf
[09:45:03] BLITZER: Yes, 24 hours or so ago, the then President-elect Donald Trump. He also began the day with a prayer service at a church here in Washington.
All right, Jeff, we're going to get back to you shortly.
Moments after taking office, document signing actually began for the new American president. Following Washington tradition, to used several pens to sign proclamations and formal cabinet nominations, a prominent Democrats were at his side for this signing ceremony, including Nancy Pelosi. We saw in Chuck Schumer the Democratic leader in the Senate.
Congressman Luis Gutierrez of Illinois was one of the dozens of Democratic members of the House of Representatives who boycotted the inauguration. Congressman Gutierrez is joins us now. Any second thoughts about that decision? Well, Nancy Pelosi was there, she's your leader but you decided you and about what 60 other Democrats that you didn't want to even be seen there.
REP. LUIS GUTIERREZ, (D) ILLINOIS: I came on CNN on December 2nd, had a conversation with Alisyn that morning, and I said I'm not coming.
GUTIERREZ: Because I had a conversation with my wife and she said honey, we're going but we're not going to the inauguration. We're going to go to the march. And I thought yes, that is what we should do because, Wolf, I cannot erase from my mind, I cannot erase from my memory the kinds of terrible, disgusting, despicable things that Donald Trump said about women that he has never apologized for, that he said he was going to take the 12 women and said he was going to sue them.
I can't and then look at my two wonderful daughters I have been blessed with and my wife, and look women in the eye and stood next to a man and somehow said OK, that's normal in America. It saying you're going to make a Muslim registry. That what you're going to do I have a grandson. His dad is of Mexican descent and his mom Puerto Rican decent. For your viewers, we don't all come from the same country. And he said to me he said "Grandpa, I feel real Puerto Rican in this arm and Real Mexican, but here I am 100 percent American. I have to stand up for his legitimacy, right and his patrimony as being an American. And not allowing to be defined as a criminal or murderer or rapist and a drug dealer.
BLITZER: Bit now he is the President of the United States, Mike Pence is the Vice President of the United States. You're a member of the House of Representatives, there will be areas I assume you will want to work with the new administration to help your constituents and help the American people. Where are those areas?
GUTIERREZ: Well, first of all, I'm going to help the American people by marching with my wife today here in Washington, D.C., and by saying "no" to this normalization of this very ugly, hateful rhetoric, number one. We have to stand up first for the foundation of our democracy. Number one. When those moments come look Wolf no one worked more closely with members of the other side of the aisle. It was Kennedy and McCain in 2004 that I worked with and introducing immigration legislation.
2013 in March I was with Paul Ryan in Chicago talking about immigration. So we worked together on legislation and had common, but, you know what, when I came to inauguration of George Bush, I didn't feel it was a threat to the fabric of American democracy as I thought this presidency is.
So when those occasions occur, here's what I say. Donald Trump has to earn my respect. Has to earn my being reciprocal. He hasn't done that yet. What he said about me and others like me. So when he spoke yesterday and said America first, right, I said did he include me? Did he include my grandson?
BLITZER: He said he wanted to include everyone.
GUTIERREZ: Yeah, but that's not the way it felt yesterday. It's not the way it felt yesterday. Yesterday I felt so distant. When you say that a community -- this is fact, right? He came down to announce his presidency of the United States, did he say I'm going to be president, make sure every kid goes to college, I'm going to be president and reduce crime? I am going to be president, make housing balanceable and employment? No, he came down, said Mexicans are murders, rapists, drug dealers, and there's a few good ones but we're going to get rid of them and get them our sight.
BLITZER: He said, he wanted to stop the carnage that's going on including there's a lot of carnage going on in Chicago, the deaths.
GUTIERREZ: Then he can come, Wolf, to Chicago and show us his plan. And if there's a plan that reduces crime and carnage in the city of Chicago, he's welcome to do that. But today I'm going to stand up for the democracy that is America.
Look, when you start where I started, right, when you start where my mom and dad started with nothing in this country, you know, coat that was put on their backs at the local church. You have a great degree of pride and love and admiration for the country. And I want to fight for that.
[09:50:05] BLITZER: It is a great country. All of us agree on that. Congressman Gutierrez.
GUTIERREZ: Thank you.
BLITZER: As usual, thank very much.
GUTIERREZ: Thank you so much, Wolf.
BLITZER: Still to come, protesters hitting the streets here in Washington and indeed around the country and the world. How do you keep a city safe? I'll speak with a former Washington, D.C., Police Chief. We'll discuss when we come back.
BLITZER: Once again marchers getting ready to march here in Washington, D.C., in Boston, around the country and indeed around the world. Large crowds already gathering. We're going to have extensive live coverage. The speakers are getting ready for these marches as well.
The women's march on Washington is set to begin actually in a few minutes. They're getting started in other cities as well around country.
I want to bring in CNN's law enforcement analyst, the former Washington D.C. Police Chief Charles Ramsey who is joining us after yesterday's violent clashes here in Washington. Chief, how does the city like Washington, D.C., prepare? Because potentially there could be some more, what, a few hundred people were arrested yesterday.
CHARLES RAMSEY, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Yeah, about 230 were arrested yesterday. But today will be totally different. Today is going to be -- the biggest challenge is going to be crowd control and traffic control. Because when you have large numbers of people you obviously have to reroute traffic around them. That's the biggest challenge for police. I think today will be a very peaceful demonstration unlike a very few number of people yesterday.
BLITZER: What happened yesterday? Why did it get so ugly?
RAMSEY: Well, you had some people who came with the intent of causing problems. I don't even call them demonstrators. I don't give them the honor of being a demonstrator. They're folks that came in to commit acts of vandalism and so forth. They were actually charged with rioting a felony here so it's no joke necessary.
BLITZER: At what point do the police decide that got to use tear gas?
RAMSEY: Well, they didn't used tear gas yesterday, they use pepper spray.
BLITZER: Is pepper spray pretty irritating too?
RAMSEY: Well, yeah, yeah. But they had to break the crowd up. And because they were again very rowdy broke out a lot of windows, they set a car on fire, you know. So it got pretty bad. And you have to quell it as quickly as you can.
[09:55:09] BLITZER: And the thousands who are gathering today for this march in Washington, almost all of them will do it very peacefully.
BLITZER: But there will be -- I assume and police have to worry about this -- an agitator here or there.
RAMSEY: Well, we'll be concerned about it. But to be honest with you, I don't think that you're going to have that problem today. Yesterday was a whole different dynamic and then majority of people demonstrating yesterday were peaceful demonstrated.
BLITZER: Yes, they have.
RAMSEY: It was just a very small group that started off with the intent of causing problems.
BLITZER: There are a lot of people, a lot of Americans right now who are very uneasy about the new administration and presumably that's going to continue for a while, potentially causing headaches for police chiefs, you're a former police chief in Philadelphia, here in Washington. You have to prepare for that kind of scenario.
RAMSEY: I think it's going to be a long year. I think we're going to see a lot of demonstrations. Of course, our Metropolitan police in Washington there aren't any departments that handle crowds better than they do because they do it so often. Philadelphia is another great example. But we're going to have our hands full this year in law enforcement because I do believe we're going to have a lot of demonstrations take place.
BLITZER: So you just do training exercises, is that what the police going to be doing?
RAMSEY: Training exercises. Again, emphasizing people's first amendment right to protest and making sure that our job is see to it. They can peacefully protest, deal with counterdemonstrators and make sure the regular workflow of the city takes place uninterrupted or at least as uninterrupted as possible.
So it's challenging, but it's all doable. My biggest concern is the whole issue of police reform. And hopefully that does not get lost. Because criminal justice reform, police reforms still needs to move forward. So I'm interested in seeing this how that place out.
BLITZER: Is it moving forward?
RAMSEY: Well, it was under the previous administration. Hopefully this administration continues in that direction.
BLITZER: Chief, thanks very much for joining us.
RAMSEY: Thank you.
BLITZER: Charles Ramsey, the former D.C. and Philadelphia Police Chief.
Where we're watching the National Cathedral here in Washington right now where President Trump and Vice President Pence and their families, they will be attending the National Prayer Service. We're going to bring you to you live when it starts. The next hour of CNN Newsroom begins right after a quick break.
BLITZER: Hello. I'm Wolf Blitzer reporting live from Washington. Once again we want to welcome our viewers here in the United States and around the world. Donald Trump the candidate, he thumbed his nose at tradition very often during the campaign.
[10:00:03] But this morning the new President embraces it. Any moment now his expected to leave the White House a bound for the National Cathedral to attended a prayer service. The Vice President Mike Pence has already arrive --