Franco Ordoñez

Franco Ordoñez is a White House Correspondent for NPR's Washington Desk. Before he came to NPR in 2019, Ordoñez covered the White House for McClatchy. He has also written about diplomatic affairs, foreign policy and immigration, and has been a correspondent in Cuba, Colombia, Mexico and Haiti.

Ordoñez has received several state and national awards for his work, including the Casey Medal, the Gerald Loeb Award and the Robert F. Kennedy Award for Excellence in Journalism. He is a two-time reporting fellow with the International Center for Journalists, and is a graduate of Columbia Journalism School and the University of Georgia.

Updated at 7:25 p.m. ET

President-elect Joe Biden on Sunday named seven women to key communications roles in his incoming White House. His transition team says it's the first time in history that the positions will be filled entirely by women.

President Trump this week acknowledged that the transition for President-elect Joe Biden to take office is going ahead. But on Thursday, he made clear he's in no mood to concede the election, even after the Electoral College formally votes this month.

"It's going to be a very hard thing to concede because we know there was massive fraud," Trump said, without evidence, complaining that the U.S. election was "like a Third World country."

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President-elect Joe Biden is preparing to name a second high-level climate position in the White House, a counterpart to his diplomatic climate envoy John Kerry, to ramp up action dramatically at home.

Updated at 9:36 p.m. ET

The White House has given its blessing for President-elect Joe Biden to receive the summary of intelligence reports contained in the presidential daily brief that President Trump receives, according to a White House official and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

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And I'm Ari Shapiro in Washington, where the transition has officially begun. Last night, the General Services Administration at last acknowledged Joe Biden's win, paving the way for the new Biden administration.

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JOE BIDEN: You know, I'm pleased to have received the ascertainment from GSA to carry out a smooth and peaceful transition of power.

Updated at 6:15 p.m. ET

The United States has had 77 Treasury secretaries in the last 231 years. So far, they've all been men.

That's about to change.

President-elect Joe Biden plans to nominate former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen to head the Treasury Department, a source close to the transition told NPR on Monday

If confirmed, Yellen would play a leading role in shaping economic policy as the United States continues to dig its way out of the deep hole caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

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In the two weeks since it became clear that President Trump lost the election to Joe Biden — a period bookended by befuddling press conferences from his longtime lawyer, Rudy Giuliani — the president has made it clear that he will spend his remaining days in the White House in the same way he spent much of his term in office: fighting.

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John Jones, who previously served as chief of staff to Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo., and has deep ties with the Congressional Black Caucus, is in the mix to head President-elect Joe Biden's Office of Management and Budget, according to three people familiar with the discussions.

"He's a well-regarded person in Democratic circles. His CBC background is helping him a lot," a senior Democratic aide familiar with the discussions told NPR.

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President Trump has been unusually silent since he lost the election. It's been more than a week since he's spoken publicly.

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President-elect Joe Biden says President Trump's refusal to accept the outcome of the election is not affecting his transition plans.

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In the hours before President Trump began to realize that he may not get to "Make America Great Again, Again," the former reality television star who stunned the world in 2016 with his improbable leap to the White House allowed for a moment of candor.

"You know, winning is easy. Losing is never easy. Not for me, it's not," Trump told reporters on Election Day, his voice hoarse from an unforgiving three-week marathon of rallies.

Now, the world is seeing just how difficult it is for a man who built his brand on winning to lose.

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Aides to President Trump have been counseling him this week that his legal options to try to contest the election are limited, but Trump wants to fight it out, a former campaign adviser who remains in touch with key players told NPR.

"It's dawning on him," the former adviser said, speaking on condition of anonymity to comment on private conversations. "He never thought he could lose ... and those of us who are in Trump World, we actually never believed he could lose."

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Updated at 4 a.m. ET

The 2020 presidential election remained up in the air early Wednesday after tight races, strong turnout and record amounts of mail-in voting left millions of legitimate votes still to be counted, and races in six key states too close to call.

Democratic candidate Joe Biden urged patience until "every vote is counted," but President Trump railed against the extra time required to count the ballots, falsely accusing Democrats of trying to steal the election from him.

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Hope Hicks, one of President Trump's closest aides, threw up her hands up into the shape of a "Y" as she danced her way back to the stairs of Air Force One.

Grinning to her left was Trump campaign adviser David Bossie, who was breaking out the same moves — albeit with less precision — as the disco beat for the Village People anthem "YMCA" pounded over the sound system on the tarmac in Pensacola, Fla.

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President Trump is racing from tarmac to tarmac in the final weeks of the campaign, holding large rallies to blast out an array of closing arguments — buckshot style — for a second term in office.

So far, most of the stops have been in swing states — Florida, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Arizona, Wisconsin, Michigan and Nevada. But he has also held rallies in Iowa and Georgia, states he won easily in 2016 in a sign the electoral map has shifted on him.

President Trump tried out a new message for seniors on the campaign trail on Friday — an important bloc of voters who have given him poor marks for how he has handled the coronavirus.

Trump, who has consistently downplayed the threat and the impact of the pandemic, delivered his most empathetic speech to date in prepared remarks in Florida, a swing state critical to his frenzied homestretch push for a second term in office.

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President Trump is back on the campaign trail. He held a rally in Sanford, Fla., last night, just a week after he was released from the hospital for COVID-19.

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Updated at 2:30 p.m. ET

Vice President Pence tested negative for the virus on Tuesday and remains symptom-free, his physician Dr. Jess Schonau said in a memo. Even so, his team says it is taking extra precautions as he picks up campaign trips for President Trump, who has returned to the White House.

Pence "has remained healthy, without any COVID-19 symptoms, and has continued to have daily COVID-19 antigen tests and intermittent PCR tests which have all resulted as negatives," Schonau wrote.

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