Donald Trump’s Day 1 To-Do List

On the morning of Jan. 21, 2017, his first full day in office, President Donald J. Trump will take a minute to settle behind the 19th-century Resolute desk, first used in the Oval Office by John F. Kennedy.

Then he will get very busy — if he follows through on his campaign promises for what he will do on his first day in office.

On Day 1, Mr. Trump has promised, he will redirect immigration enforcement, alter trade relations with China and other nations, relax restrictions on energy production, impose new rules on lobbyists, halt efforts to combat global warming, lift curbs on guns, push for congressional term limits and demand a new strategy for defeating the Islamic State. He may face some legal and procedural hurdles, but most of his Day 1 pledges involve issuing presidential directives, executive orders or memorandums that do not need legislative approval.

Although Mr. Trump and his top advisers have appeared to moderate some of his broader campaign pledges — they have suggested he might keep parts of the Affordable Care Act, delay building a wall along the border with Mexico and not appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Hillary Clinton’s emails — Mr. Trump has said nothing to indicate that he will not make good on his explicit Day 1 promises, many of which he delivered in his “Contract With the American Voter” during a speech in late October in Gettysburg, Pa.

Moving quickly is, after all, a modern presidential tradition. On his first day in office, President Obama imposed lobbying rules, closed secret interrogation facilities, banned torture and ordered the prison at Guantánamo Bay closed (an order that Congress has blocked to this day). Bowing to conservatives, on his first day, President George W. Bush ended funding of overseas clinics that provided abortion services.

Here is what Mr. Trump has said he will do:

Immigration

Nowhere has Mr. Trump been more specific than in his desire to deal with immigration on his first day. During a campaign rally on Aug. 31 in Phoenix, he told the crowd that he would instruct his administration to begin deporting illegal immigrants with criminal records immediately.

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An undocumented immigrant boarding an Immigration and Customs Enforcement jet in Mesa, Ariz., before being deported, Photo: John Moore/Getty Images

“We will begin moving them out, Day 1,” he said. “My first hour in office, those people are gone.”

In fact, immigration enforcement agents at the Department of Homeland Security are already under a mandate from Mr. Obama to deport criminals. The executive actions the president took in late 2014 order officials to focus on deporting “national security threats, convicted felons, gang members and illegal entrants apprehended at the border.”

But Mr. Trump does have wide latitude to direct an even more aggressive deportation effort, and he appears determined to do so quickly. He has said he will immediately end Mr. Obama’s program that protects undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as young children. But it is unclear whether Mr. Trump will seek to quickly deport the 700,000 or so people who signed up for the program, or merely refuse to accept new applicants.

He has said he also plans on Day 1 to suspend immigration from “terror-prone” countries, and to impose “extreme vetting” on others. And he has said he will immediately inform sanctuary cities — about two dozen American cities where officials have pledged not to prosecute people solely for being undocumented — that they will lose federal funding.

Economy and Trade

Much of Mr. Trump’s campaign was built on a promise to help struggling American workers who are frustrated by the loss of jobs, especially in the heartland.

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A brokerage house in Shanghai day after the election, President-elect Trump promised to tell his Treasury secretary to label china a currency manipulator, Photo: Aly Song/Reuters

The president-elect has said he intends to take several actions to pursue those policies on his first day, including announcing his intention to renegotiate or withdraw from the North American Free Trade Agreement and to stop pursuing adoption of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Both actions are well within Mr. Trump’s powers as president.

He has promised to pick up the phone and order his Treasury secretary to label China a currency manipulator, and to tell his commerce secretary to begin identifying foreign trade abuses.

He has also said he will call chief executives of major companies who have announced plans to move jobs overseas to warn them that he will impose 35 percent tariffs if they proceed. That promise may be difficult to keep: Tariffs require congressional approval, and the Constitution bans the imposition of taxes or tariffs specifically aimed at a single company.

The Environment

The president-elect has taken direct aim at Mr. Obama’s actions on the environment and climate.

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Gascoyne, N.D., where pipes for the planned Keystone XL pipeline were stored in 2014. President Obama rejected construction of the pipeline, but President-elect Trump has said he will approve it, Photo: Andrew Cullen/Reuters

Mr. Trump has said that on his first day in office, he will lift Obama-era rules that restrict where oil drilling and other energy production are done, although Mr. Trump may find it harder to change those plans than he thinks. In July, for example, Mr. Obama’s administration issued regulations making it harder to drill for oil in the Arctic by requiring extensive plans for containing spills. Undoing final regulations like the Arctic drilling rules would require a long legal process.

It may be easier to reconsider Mr. Obama’s ruling against construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, which would bring petroleum from Canada’s oil sands to Gulf Coast refineries. Mr. Trump has said he will indicate on his first day his desire to approve the pipeline. And he has promised to call United Nations officials the same day to inform them he is canceling United States’ financial commitments to United Nations climate change programs.

Other Day 1 Promises

At some point that day, Mr. Trump has said, he will convene a meeting of senior Pentagon officials to discuss the threat posed by the Islamic State and other terrorist groups. “I am also going to convene my top generals and give them a simple instruction: They will have 30 days to submit to the Oval Office a plan for defeating ISIS,” as the Islamic State is also known, Mr. Trump said in Greenville, N.C., during the campaign.

The president-elect has also promised to act to get rid of gun-free zones around schools and other facilities, a nod to Second Amendment supporters. “My first day, it gets signed, O.K.?” he said at a January rally. “My first day. There’s no more gun-free zones.”

But that may be a tough promise to keep. Gun-free zones are a result of a 1990 law proposed by Joseph R. Biden Jr., then a senator, and ending them would require legislation that Congress is unlikely to pass on Mr. Trump’s first day in office.

It will be easier to make good on his promises to attack corruption in Washington. He has said he will propose term limits for members of Congress, impose restrictions on the creation of new regulations, and limit the lobbying activities of White House and congressional officials after they leave office.

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(Source:nytimes.com)
Photo:John Taggart/Bloomberg

Donald Trump is already helping the working class

It’s not uncommon for a Republican to be pro-business. But President-elect Donald Trump showed Tuesday night he’s pro-worker, too, by saving 1,000 jobs at the Carrier plant in Indiana.

His standing up for the blue-collar workers who helped get him elected is no small feat, even for the very accomplished billionaire, who has a long record of delivering under budget and on time.

Sure, it’s unusual for a president-elect to interject himself in the economic mechanizations of a specific company — let alone the economy writ large — but everything about Trump being the next president is unusual.

Granting tax breaks to keep jobs here in America may not be the purview of the president, but who can dispute the optics: While announcing his economic team of Steve Mnuchin for Treasury and Wilbur Ross Jr. for Commerce, Trump was keeping his promises to working Americans — and proving their trust in him wasn’t misplaced.

The brutally battered blue-collar voters, long played for suckers as supporters of the Democratic Party’s false promises and phony hope, are no longer looking to their union bosses to tell them how to vote.

They put their faith in a man who by and large made 95 percent of his fortune all on his own by getting along with contractors and plumbers and electricians. He’s a builder, first and foremost.

The Republicans may not have known what they had in Trump; the mainstream media and Beltway bureaucrats certainly didn’t. But the blue-collar voting base liked what it saw and now likes what it has. Real, tangible victories, and he hasn’t even held office for a single day yet.

The American worker has won more here than just victories against Carrier and Ford (which last week agreed to keep production of an SUV line, the Lincoln MKC, in Louisville rather than moving it to Mexico).

Meaningful tax cuts for both business and blue-collar and white-collar taxpayers will make the calculus of leaving America to do business elsewhere less advantageous. As will the rollback and replacement of stupid growth-constricting regulations. America has won with a billionaire businessman who gets down to business before even being sworn in.

Trump isn’t waiting until January to work to turn the economy around, and that’s a major problem for the Democrats.

Working hard is in, hardly working is out. In Indiana and the rest of America, happiness just trumped hope.

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(Source:nypost.com)
Photo:AP

Donald Trump spends Thanksgiving working hard on Carrier plant

US President-elect Donald Trump said on Thursday (Nov 24) he was spending part of his Thanksgiving holiday trying to persuade an Indiana air conditioner maker to keep production in the United States – reflecting his campaign pledge to stop the flow of jobs abroad.

Trump, who is also weighing decisions on his Cabinet during a family retreat at his Mar-a-Lago golf resort in Florida, said on Twitter he was “working hard, even on Thanksgiving, trying to get Carrier A.C. Company to stay in the U.S. (Indiana). MAKING PROGRESS – Will know soon!”

Carrier Corp, a division of United Technologies Corp , responded on Twitter that the company has had”discussions with the incoming administration” but had “nothing to announce at this time.” A representative for the company had no additional comment.

Earlier this year, the company said it would move 1,400 jobs to Mexico from Indiana, giving a three-year timetable for the shift.

The state’s Republican governor, Mike Pence – later picked by Trump as his vice-presidential running mate – decried the decision, and spoke out against it often on the campaign trail.

 Trump made Carrier’s decision part of his rallying cry against trade deals that he said were unfavourable to American workers. He said he would slap taxes on the company’s air conditioners shipped back to the United States.

Asked by Reuters last week whether the company was reconsidering its decision given Trump’s victory in the Nov 8 election over Democrat Hillary Clinton, the company said in a statement it was “making every effort” to help its Indiana employees during the shift.

“By providing three years advance notice of the move and by funding education and retraining programs for up to four years after the move is complete, we are providing employees with both time and opportunity to help them to make a smooth transition,”the company said.

Carrier also cited an agreement it had reached with the United Steelworkers union about compensation for affected workers.

Trump also railed against Ford Motor Co during the campaign, and took a victory lap on Twitter last week after the company informed him it would not shift production of a Lincoln sport utility vehicle to Mexico from Kentucky.

“I worked hard with Bill Ford to keep the Lincoln plant in Kentucky,” Trump tweeted, referring to Ford’s executive chairman.

Ford had never considered moving the whole factory south of the border, but said it was encouraged by Trump’s business policies.

CABINET DELIBERATIONS

Trump, who takes office on Jan. 20, has been interviewing candidates for his Cabinet and other top White House positions. He and Pence have held more than 60 such meetings since the election.

Trump announced two picks on Wednesday for his Cabinet – South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, and wealthy Republican donor and school choice advocate Betsy DeVos to lead the Education Department.

Both are subject to Senate confirmation.

Major choices for the Pentagon, State Department and Treasury are still to come. A spokesman said no announcements were expected on Thursday.

Trump’s State Department deliberations have spurred debate within his inner circle – particularly his consideration of Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor and businessman who ran against Democratic President Barack Obama in the 2012 election.

Romney would be a comforting pick for establishment Republicans. But hardline Trump backers believe he should be disqualified because he called Trump a “fraud” during the Republican nominating race and urged Republicans to stop him from becoming their candidate for the 2016 election.

Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s senior adviser, said on Thursday she was on the receiving end of a “deluge of social media & private comms” about the Romney option, noting being “loyal” was a positive attribute for the job.

Trump and Pence were “spending significant time” on the secretary of state pick, spokesman Jason Miller told reporters on Wednesday.

“They’ll be looking for things like chemistry, experience, a similar vision into what the president-elect and vice president elect are trying to do with this administration,” Miller said.

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(Source:straitstimes.com)
Photo: AP

 

Trump may empower local police to round up immigrants

MIAMI — Deputizing local police officers from around the country to enforce the nation’s immigration laws is one plan being proposed to President-elect Donald Trump to fulfill his pledge to crack down on undocumented immigrants.

The idea was on a sheet of proposals for the Department of Homeland Security that was photographed when a member of Trump’s immigration transition team met with him Sunday. The list of proposals carried by Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach also addressed Trump’s campaign pledge to cut off the program that accepts Syrian refugees and to enhance screening of people from countries with ties to terrorism.

Kobach, who has helped several states draft laws that crack down on illegal immigration, did not respond to requests for comments about the proposals.

The so-called 287(g) program on the list allows the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency to train local police officers and sheriffs deputies to locate and catch undocumented immigrants living in their communities.

The program was created by Congress in 1996 and used by President George W. Bush. By 2010, local officers in 24 states were trained and empowered by ICE to respond to crime scenes, make traffic stops and check local jails to determine the immigration status of suspects.

The program was largely phased out by President Obama. Local officers now only work in local jails, not on the street.

Kobach’s proposal suggests the program be ratcheted back up to “at least 70 cities and counties” when Trump enters the White House in January. Trump said in a post-election interview that a top priority will be deporting an estimated 2 million to 3 million undocumented immigrants with criminal records.

Expanding local enforcement would be a quick, cheap “force multiplier” for a Trump administration intent on increasing deportations, said Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies, a group that favors steps to curb illegal immigration. She said federal agents are already stretched thin, and adding local officers to do immigration work would help expand their reach.

“I would expect ICE to be inundated with applications” from local agencies interested in taking part, Vaughan said. “It’s a great thing for public safety and our immigration enforcement. You’re going to have fewer criminal aliens falling through the cracks and more sent home rather than being allowed to stay in those communities.”

Opponents counter that expanding local enforcement would alienate communities with significant Hispanic populations. Lake County (Ill.) Sheriff Mark Curran, a former prosecutor, said he looked into the program when it was created, but changed his mind once he thought through the downside of such a step.

Curran said solving crimes requires witnesses to step forward and talk to police, something the Hispanic community would not do if the officers were also acting as immigration agents.

“As soon as your police car pulls up, all the doors are going to shut,” Curran said. “All they know is you dragged some relative of theirs out of the house a week ago who hadn’t done anything but try to provide for his family. They’re not going to want to cooperate with you.”

Opponents counter that expanding local enforcement would alienate communities with significant Hispanic populations. Lake County (Ill.) Sheriff Mark Curran, a former prosecutor, said he looked into the program when it was created, but changed his mind once he thought through the downside of such a step.

Curran said solving crimes requires witnesses to step forward and talk to police, something the Hispanic community would not do if the officers were also acting as immigration agents.

“As soon as your police car pulls up, all the doors are going to shut,” Curran said. “All they know is you dragged some relative of theirs out of the house a week ago who hadn’t done anything but try to provide for his family. They’re not going to want to cooperate with you.”

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(Source:washingtontimes.com)
Photo: AP

Russia wants to improve US relations

Russia hopes to resume dialogue and bring relations with the US “back to a constructive course,” according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov, who said it would be “hard to make them worse.”

Asked by journalists about the Kremlin’s links with the US, Peskov said: “I’d like to remind you of President Putin’s words, numerous times he has talked about his wish to build good, mutually beneficial relations based on mutual respect and equality.”

“The President always said he expected a reciprocity from Washington,” Peskov added.”Now we know that our bilateral relations are at the bottom so it’s hard to make them worse, but we certainly hope for resuming a dialogue and we’ll start a difficult and slow process of bringing the relations back to a constructive course.

“Improving US ties with Russia was a key plank of US President-elect Donald Trump’s foreign policy during the election campaign.

Many in Russia had expected Hillary Clinton, who has been consistently critical of the Kremlin and is deeply unpopular in Moscow as a result, to sweep to victory on November 8.

Following Trump’s win, there are hopes of a fresh start though Trump told the New York Times this week that he was not looking to “reset” US-Russia relations.

Asked about Trump’s comments, Peskov referred to Clinton’s previous ill-fated attempt to “reset” relations while serving as Secretary of State.

“As for a reset, we can only agree with the President-elect because this word has embarrassed itself as the consequences of that reset are not the ones we’d like to see,” Peskov said.

“The term doesn’t matter. It’s about a will and showing the readiness for normalizing the relations — these are the most important things.”

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Donald Trump Wraps up Weekend Interviews Potential Cabinet Members

President-elect Trump continued his round of weekend meetings Sunday, with former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie among those who met with Trump and members of his transition team.

Others whom Trump met with Sunday include: Ari Emanuel, brother of Rahm Emanuel, the mayor of Chicago and former chief of staff to President Obama; conservative writer John Gray; private equity firm founder Wilbur Ross; Black Entertainment Television founder Robert Johnson; and David McCormick president of global investment firm, Bridgewater Associates, who held senior positions in the George W. Bush administration.

Trump told reporters that one of his most loyal and public allies, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, was also a prospect for secretary of state “and other things.” Giuliani at one point had been considered for attorney general, but Trump gave that job to Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama.

Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis was an “impressive” prospect for defence secretary, president-elect Donald Trump and vice-president-elect Mike Pence said

 

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Donald Trump and James Mattis, Photo:Carolyn Kaster/Associated Press

Trump also was making plans for transitioning his family. He told reporters Sunday that his wife, Melania, and their 10-year-old son, Barron, would move to Washington when the school year ends.

Trump started filling key administration positions on Friday, picking Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions for attorney general and Kansas Rep. Mike Pompeo to head the CIA, signalling a sharp rightward shift in U.S. security policy as he begins to form his Cabinet. Trump also named retired Lt.-Gen. Michael Flynn as his national security adviser.

Trump’s initial decisions suggest a more aggressive military involvement in counterterror strategy and a greater emphasis on Islam’s role in stoking extremism.

He referred to those who came to meet with him as “patriots” in a tweet Sunday morning.

 

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(Source:newschannelnebraska.com;www.cbc.ca)
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Barack Obama Ready to Speak Up if Donald Trump ‘Threatens Core Values’

US President Barack Obama has indicated he could break with tradition and speak out against Donald Trump when the businessman succeeds him.

Trump is set to become the 45th US president in January when he takes over from Obama, who has served two terms. Outgoing US presidents traditionally step back from public life and avoid commenting on their successor’s presidency.

The Republican president-elect has alarmed some US citizens with his choices for key cabinet positions, including Stephen Bannon, the former head of alt-right site Breitbart News whom Trump has appointed as his chief strategist.

Obama’s predecessor, George W Bush, has largely retired from public life since the current president succeeded him in 2008. Bush told CNN in 2013 that Obama had a “hard job” and “a former president doesn’t need to make it any harder”.

The current president said that he would extend the same professional courtesy offered him by Bush to Trump. Obama also added that he thought that the responsibility of being president would mean Trump would water down some of his controversial campaign promises.

The Republican made numerous outlandish pledges during his presidential campaign, including a temporary ban on Muslims entering the US and building a border wall with Mexico, which the latter would be expected to pay for.

Trump has held a series of interviews with potential candidates for positions on his team over the weekend at his golf resort in New Jersey. The president-elect is reportedly considering former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who was defeated by Obama in the 2012 election, for the role of secretary of state, and retired general James Mattis, who headed up US military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan from 2010 to 2013, as his possible defense secretary.

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(Source:newsweek.com)
Photo: Getty