Overnight Defense: Senate to vote on defense picks Friday | 41 detainees left at Gitmo | North Korea may be prepping missile launch

Overnight Defense: Senate to vote on defense picks Friday | 41 detainees left at Gitmo | North Korea may be prepping missile launch
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THE TOPLINE: President-elect Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpPapadopoulos on AG's new powers: 'Trump is now on the offense' Pelosi uses Trump to her advantage Mike Pence delivers West Point commencement address MORE will be sworn in on Friday, and his defense nominees could be getting to work soon after.

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerNo agreement on budget caps in sight ahead of Memorial Day recess Ex-White House photographer roasts Trump: 'This is what a cover up looked like' under Obama Pelosi: Trump 'is engaged in a cover-up' MORE (D-N.Y.) said Thursday that the upper chamber will take up at least two of Trump's nominees on Friday.

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"Senators on both sides of the aisle have expressed support for the president-elect's key national security nominees," he told reporters.

Democrats will allow for a "day one" vote on retired Gens. James Mattis and John Kelly, Trump's picks to lead the Pentagon and Department of Homeland Security, respectively.

"I looked at their records and I rely on advice from some colleagues on both sides of the aisle ... and I think they would be very good nominees," Schumer said, asked why Democrats were allowing votes on Mattis and Kelly.

The Hill's Jordain Carney has more here.

OBAMA RELEASES MORE GITMO DETAINEES: President Obama revealed Thursday that four more detainees have been transferred out of the Guantanamo Bay detention facility as he took a parting shot at Congress for blocking his eight-year effort to close the prison.

In a letter to the Republican leaders of Congress, Obama said that 41 detainees remaining, down from the 45 the Pentagon said were there on Tuesday.

"Of the nearly 800 detainees at one time held at the facility, today only 41 remain," Obama wrote a letter to Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanAmash storm hits Capitol Hill Debate with Donald Trump? Just say no Ex-Trump adviser says GOP needs a better health-care message for 2020 MORE (R-Wis.) and Senate President Pro Tempore Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchTrump gambles in push for drug import proposal Biden's role in Anita Hill hearings defended by witness not allowed to testify 'Congress' worst tax idea ever'? Hardly. MORE (R-Utah).

"There is simply no justification beyond politics for the Congress' insistence on keeping the facility open," Obama continued. "Members of Congress who obstruct efforts to close the facility, given the stakes involved for our security, have abdicated their responsibility to the American people.

The Hill's Rebecca Kheel has more here.

NORTH KOREA MAY BE PREPPING MISSILE LAUNCH:  North Korea could be making preparations for a missile launch to test President-elect Donald Trump , Reuters reports.

U.S. intelligence officials said that there are indications that Pyongyang could hold a launch in the coming days or weeks. The timing of such a missile test is unclear, but South Korean media has reported that a launch could be timed to Trump's inauguration on Friday.

A missile launch could be a test of how the Trump administration will handle such provocations from Pyongyang, a U.S. official who monitors North Korea told Reuters.

The Hill's Max Greenwood has more here.

B-2s STRIKE ISIS CAMPS IN LIBYA: Two U.S. B-2 bombers struck two ISIS camps in Libya Wednesday night, dropping more than 100 munitions and killing more than 80 militants, the Pentagon announced Thursday morning.

The strikes destroyed two camps located 45 kilometers southwest of Sirte, which was the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria's stronghold in the country until a joint U.S.-Libya military operation, Operation Odyssey Dawn, routed the group last month.

Pentagon officials said the strikes were to take out "squirters" who fled Sirte and were trying to reorganize and reconstitute.

The Hill's Kristina Wong has more here.

ON TAP FOR TOMORROW:

Donald Trump becomes our 45th president. Keep checking in at TheHill.com for updates on Inauguration Day.

ICYMI:

-- The Hill: Obama's last Gitmo transfers sent to Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates

-- The Hill: Dem senators to Trump pick: Probe if adviser violated Russia sanctions

-- The Hill: Chelsea Manning to Obama: Thanks for 'giving me a chance'

-- The Hill: Carter: 'I'm very confident in our force'

-- The Hill: Trump to visit CIA on Saturday: report