In it, but not of it. TPM DC

Republicans have the House, the Senate and the White House. It is the magic political trifecta the party has been waiting for – with one small hitch.

Everyone is holding their breath to see what version of President-elect Trump is sworn in. Is it the "build the wall," "drain the swamp," bad trade deal Trump many members made conscious decisions to run away from in their own elections? Or is a more pragmatic and malleable commander-in-chief about to emerge?

Republicans are about to find out.

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Republican senators aren't ready to get rid of the filibuster. Not yet, at least.

Even as outgoing Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (R-NV) warned Republicans in October that Democrats might nuke the filibuster on Supreme Court nominees if Republicans held them up under a Democratic president, Republicans seem less willing to go there.

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Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said he still has differences with President-elect Donald Trump, but is prepared to work with him and be a check on him when necessary.

"There will be areas where I don't agree, and my job then will be to represent a coequal branch of government and speak my mind," Graham told reporters in the Senate Tuesday.

In the wide-ranging session Tuesday afternoon, Graham – a vocal opponent of Trump's tone and positions on immigration and foreign policy – said that he believes Trump is not an ideologue and instead will still be evolving on public policy as his presidency begins, especially since Trump has a business background and lives in a world where "the other side has to get something."

"He has a unique opportunity here. There are deals to be made. Big, HUGE deals," Graham said, poking at Trump's hyperbolic rhetoric. "But there will be no huge deals in this body that doesn't have Democrat and Republican support."

Specifically, Graham – a sponsor of the comprehensive immigration bill in 2013 – said on immigration that he was waiting to see what Trump would do.

"I don't know what he wants to do. I'll tell you what I won't do. I will not vote for a bill that treats a grandmother and a drug dealer the same. So, I will vote for border security, but here's my view. Democrats are not going to give Republicans all the things we want on border security [and] illegal immigration increases unless they know what is going to happen to the 11 million," Graham said.

He added he believed Trump was "evolving" on the issue including on his signature promise of the border wall, which Trump said over the weekend may not be entirely a wall, but some fence.

"He's right about that," Graham said.

Graham added that Trump needed to "think long and hard about" repealing DACA, an executive order that gave children who were brought to the U.S. illegally as kids legal status.

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The red 'Make America Great Again' hats poured out of the House Republican conference Tuesday– the signal that the party has fully drunk the the Donald Trump Kool-aid it was resisting little more than a week ago.

It was the first full conference meeting in the wake of Trump's stunning election win. Members had been back home, in their districts, trying carefully to balance their bombastic nominee with their own re-elections. In the end, it turned out Trump's vision helped them.

Now, even Republicans who once kept their distance from their party's nominee, wanted to be on the right side of their new President. But the cognitive dissonance between what House GOP leaders were saying about Trump before the election and what they're saying now was not lost on some members.

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It's the biggest parlor game in DC when a new President comes to town: Who will occupy the top spots in the new administration?

While resumes are polished, back channels opened and the public and private preening begins, dubious lists appear of prospective, rumored, and wannabe appointees, some lists more reliably informed than others.

TPM will maintain a master list of all of the reported possible picks for the top slots--far-fetched or not--crossing them off as they are eliminated from consideration.

It will be an evolving list so check back as Trump builds out a new administration from scratch.

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Donald Trump stunned Washington Tuesday night with his victory, but behind the scenes a smaller-than usual transition team has been preparing for this eventuality.

The transition team–the entity tasked with hiring staff, assembling Trump's cabinet and laying out the blue print for Trump's first 100 days– is like Trump's campaign itself: leaner than past operations and far more unconventional with an estimated 100 individuals working on it full time, according to CNN.

By comparison, the Associated Press reported that Romney's team–Romney Readiness Project–had more than 460 individuals working on it leading up to the 2012 campaign. President Barack Obama, for example, had 600 individuals charting the path forward in 2008.

Leading the team is New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a former competitor. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), a loyal foot soldier for Trump whose vision of border wall brand of immigration reform became a central theme in Trump's campaign, is also closely involved.

Here's what we know so far:

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When Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), within a few hours of Justice Antonin Scalia’s unexpected death in February, declared that his seat should remain open for the next president to fill, no matter whom President Obama nominated, many were quick to cry foul.

Democrats argued that the GOP, yet again, was proving to be the party of obstructionism, and the voters would punish Republicans for the unprecedented gambit. Legal observers, including some conservatives, fretted over the constitutional norms that were being shattered with the move, along with its political wisdom. Some Republicans even signaled their discomfort with the stance, particularly after Obama nominated a 63-year-old moderate who, they argued, would be better for them than whatever young liberal a President Clinton could be expected to nominate.

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