Trump, House Republicans Battle Over Ethics Watchdog

House Republicans responded to pressure from constituents, party leaders and President-elect Trump by scrapping their plan to restructure the Office of Congressional Ethics.
3:07 | 01/04/17

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Transcript for Trump, House Republicans Battle Over Ethics Watchdog
with Twitter messages. President-elect trump putting the pressure on congress going against members of his own party for trying to strip power from the congressional ethics office. House Republicans quickly reversing course on Tuesday. Our congressional correspondent Mary Bruce has more and joins us from Washington. Good morning, Mary. Reporter: Good morning, robin. It's a new republicaner ra nearly a decade in the making. This morning, Republicans are trying to move on after their first day was overshadowed by stumbles and a clash with the president-elect. This morning, Donald Trump showing he can get Republicans to fall in line. Just a day after Republicans voted to eliminate an independent ethics body, the measure was scrapped. Are you concerned about the message this is sending? On the first day of the new congress? Well, I think a good message is being sent here. Which is, you know, Republican leadership and membership alike said this is a problem. We need to change it. And we just did. Reporter: Republicans buckling under pressure from constituents, party leaders, and the president-elect. Trump tweeting, do they really have to make the weakening of the independent ethics watchdog, as unfair as it may be, their number one act and priority. Focus on tax reform, health care, and so many other things of far greater importance. ABC news learning trump called house speaker Paul Ryan right after the ethics changes were dichd. Republicans trying to regroup. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. This is the kind of thing that most of us only dreamed about. I know because I used to dream about this a lot. Reporter: But the Democrats, with their new leader in the senate who is friendly with trump, are vowing to keep Republicans if check. It is not our job to be a rubber stamp. It's our job to do what's best for the American people, the middle class, and those struggling to get there. Reporter: Now, as the capital prepares for the inauguration, just 16 days away, we have learned that all of the former living presidents, except George H.W. Bush, will be here for the big date. Even Hillary Clinton will be there. Robin? That will be quite a moment. Mary. And also that moment that George was alluding to earlier with Paul Ryan. A little bit of a lesson in dabbing? Yeah, that's the real debate up here this morning is over dabbing. House speaker Paul ryan was swearing in a new Kansas representative. The congressman's son showed off the popular dance move. The speaker seems to have absolutely no idea what was going on. He asked the boy if he needed to sneeze. The speaker later on Twitter saying he had just sworn in nearly 300 new members but still has no idea what dabbing is this morning. In case you're wondering, the congressman's son is so grounded. The tweet just came out. The kid was being kind of a jerk. Yeah, he had it wrong. Isn't it two hands. I don't know. I mean -- and Paul Ryan was entirely clueless, which surprised me, because cam newton did this. Paul Ryan is a big football fan. I don't know.

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