The Presidency so Far
March 2, 2017
As of February 25 President Donald Trump has spent thirty six days in office. Enough time has now passed that the campaign promises of the president can be compared to the actions taken during his first month in office.
The Wall with Mexico is perhaps Trump’s most famous campaign promise. This promise is a microcosm of the Trump campaign as a whole: simplistic and reactionary solutions to complex issues. While the wall itself is rapidly becoming real, the fanciful claim of making “Mexico paying for it” will almost certainly remain unrealized. The White House’ Hobbesian solution to Mexico refusing to pay for the border wall is to implement a harsh import tax with Mexico. The American consumer will fund the border wall, as any free market loving Republican would deem appropriate.
The infamous Muslim Ban President Trump called for during his campaign was among the more autocratic aspects of the 2016 presidential election. Aside from the unconstitutional nature of the ban’s implementation and subsequent overhaul, it is doubtful a President married to an immigrant realized the irony of banning migrants. Executive order 13769, or simply the muslim ban, quickly drew backlash from those tasked with enforcing it. The rapid and aggressive response from those opposed to the order, in both the government and the public, is indicative of a great willingness to retaliate to other prospective actions.
Trump is apparently a great lover of philosophy, as his promise to Appoint a Special Prosecutor to Investigate Hillary Clinton would have made Machiavelli blush. The calls by his supporters to “lock her (Clinton) up” was addressed by Donald Trump during the second Presidential Debate. This drew harsh criticism, and was seen as akin to an autocrat threatening his political opponents. He did, however, redact this statement, although only after his electoral victory.
The Republican opposition to then President Obama’s effort to Fill Antonin Scalia’s Vacancy yielded President Trump a Supreme Court nominee. The nominee, Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Neil Gorsuch, fits the Conservative Supreme Court mold. Gorsuch is a constitutional originalist, and a legal textualist. The appointment of Gorsuch in impressive in this administration because it transpired rather smoothly relative to the more turbulent actions of this same administration.
Part of Trump’s appeal to Appalachia involved taking steps away from renewable resources. This focused mainly on Coal and Gas pipelines. Key issues such as the Keystone pipeline and Standing Rock pipeline have divided much of the nation. President Trump has vowed to step away from renewable energy and back towards the climate change driving energies of previous Republican administrations.
Finally, President Trump as vowed to Replace Obamacare with “something better.” This step has already been undertaken as its repeal has been initiated by an Executive Order. The inability of Congress to recognize the importance of healthcare is ironic, as their healthcare is paid for by taxpayers and provided by Bethesda Medical hospital.
Most times the largest danger regarding a presidents campaign promises is that he would not keep them. This administration is different. The greatest danger the Trump administration posses is that it will follow Trump’s campaign promises to the letter. The actions of the president thus far seem to indicate that he intends to keep his word, terrifying and shortsighted as that may be. The implications of this a far reaching, such as Trump refusing to honor article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty.