President Trump: what happens now?
President Trump: what happens now?
Donald Trump has promised that as president he will honour the slogan stitched into his red baseball caps: Make America Great Again.
At 70, he is the oldest man to be elected president, and the only one never to have held elected office or served in the military.
But with him in the White House, Trump has said, his supporters are going to “win so big” they will soon be “sick of winning”.
It is customary in US presidential elections that a candidate sets out a vision for their first term in the Oval Office. Ever keen to be “the greatest”, Trump has slashed his timeline from 100 days to one.
He has quietly dropped his call to remove all undocumented immigrants from the US. It’s so impractical it might be impossible, and would damage the US economy by taking too many people out of the labour market.
Instead he would immediately begin deporting illegal immigrants with criminal records. It’s estimated there are fewer than 168,000 but Trump has put the number at 2m. If true, “criminals” might include people who’ve got a speeding ticket.
He will “suspend immigration from terror-prone regions where vetting cannot safely occur”. Trump has claimed the government “does not know” the backgrounds of refugees it lets in, despite them being scrutinised for up to two years before being allowed to enter the US.
It might not happen on the first day, but eventually a Trump administration would legislate to “build a wall” along the southern border and make Mexico pay for it. He has not explained in detail how this would happen.
Trump has promised to “drain the swamp” of big-money Washington politics. Day one reforms include a constitutional amendment to impose term limits on all members of congress and a five-year ban on White House and Congressional officials becoming lobbyists after they leave government service.
He has called for a hiring freeze on all federal employees to reduce its workforce (exempting military, public safety, and public health).
Trump would break from traditional Republican commitments to free trade, closing America’s economic borders.
He will immediately announce his intention to “renegotiate” the NAFTA agreement with Canada and Mexico and cancel participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the controversial trade deal with 12 countries including Australia and New Zealand.
Trump has said he may not guarantee protection to NATO allies who come under attack, helping only if that country has fulfilled its “obligations” within the alliance.
That is the first time since World War II that a presidential candidate has suggested putting conditions on America’s defence of its key allies.
Advocating an ultra “America first” view of the world Trump has also threatened to withdraw troops from Europe and Asia if those allies fail to pay more for US protection.
Trump has flip-flopped on Syria. Most recently he implied he sees Bashar al-Assad as a lesser evil than US-backed opposition groups. He has promised to “bomb the hell” out of IS.
Energy and the environment
Trump plans to cancel billions of dollars to UN climate change programmes. He would redirect the funds to US infrastructure projects.
He has promised to lift restrictions on fracking and boost American oil and natural gas production. He would reinstate the Keystone oil pipeline project from Alberta, Canada to refineries in Illinois and Texas and a distribution centre in Oklahoma.Environmentalists convinced President Obama to stop the project, warning against the effects of increasing oil production and damaging fragile ecosystems.
Wipe Barack Obama from the history books
Trump has promised to cancel every “executive action, memorandum and order issued by President Obama”.
Chief is the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare. It has brought health insurance to some 12.7m people who would have struggled to afford medical cover but has also pushed up insurance premiums for those not on government assistance.
Trump would install another system, Health Savings Accounts, giving states more power to handle funds.
Critics have said he has failed to explain how it differs significantly from Obama’s plan and how he would implement it.
As with much of his presidential campaign, Trump appears to be asking the American people to trust him and wait and see.