© 2017 The Hook                                                                                                                                 Foster Harris

100 Days of Trump

By: Foster H. ('20)

Trump’s First 100 Days

Trump’s first 100 days were promised to be filled with one Republican victory after another, with endless changes, and, as Trump himself claimed: “I think we've done more than perhaps any President in the first 100 days” (Westwood). The truth? Trump’s first 100 days, despite all of the hype and promises, have been fairly average. Certain facets have been devastating, to say the least, and the Trump administration has coined terms such as “alternative facts”, attacked what is arguably the most unbiased medium of all (science), and built a cabinet full of controversial picks. However, what Trump and his administration have actually accomplished has been overshadowed by the -often absurd- things that he tweets. Here are the 11 policies and actions that Trump has pushed through and taken during his first 100 days in office.

 

1 -Over 5000 new jobs

While faults can be found in what types of new jobs have been created, such as coal jobs or the jobs created to build the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines, having new jobs is generally a good thing.

 

2 -No TPP

Anti and pro TPP rhetoric became a key topic during the 2016 campaign. The TPP was set up by Trump’s predecessor, Obama. The former president did so through long periods of negotiating and deal-making. The goal was to create a trade deal that was supported by the 12 nations’ trade chiefs (Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam) (Granville). President Obama and his administration were huge proponents of the TPP, and during the campaign, Hillary Clinton avidly supported TPP. They claimed that it would lower tariffs and provide protection from Chinese influence (Granville). According to The New York Times, an independent study stated that the TPP would increase incomes and exports in the United States (Granville). However, the TPP or Trans-Pacific Partnership was seen by members of both political parties as an example of unsuccessful globalism. Candidates from both parties, such as Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump, criticized the TPP for benefitting big businesses, rather than the American people, as the TPP would encourage companies to outsource and create new jobs in low-wage countries (Granville). The TPP was also criticized because it would have encouraged a raise in the price of pharmaceuticals (Granville). Shortly after being inaugurated, Trump took the US out of the TPP.

 

3 -Decrease in Illegal Border Crossings

 

4 -Took Action on Syria After Chemical Attacks

 

5 -Imposed Sanctions on 25 Iranian Entities

 

6 -Nominated and Confirmed Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch

Gorsuch’s confirmation was a big accomplishment for Trump and his fellow Republicans, largely because of the persistence of Democratic senators like Elizabeth Warren. the Republicans were forced to invoke the ‘Nuclear Option’ and change Senate rules in order to achieve this party victory.

 

7 -Launched Opioid Abuse Commission

Opioid addiction is a serious problem in the United States, and this new commission, headed by Chris Christie, is tasked with fighting the “Opioid Epidemic.”

 

8 -Approved Dakota Access Pipeline and Keystone XL Pipeline

Shrouded by controversy over environmental effects and the Standing Rock protests (over not wanting the pipeline on their land), Trump stuck by his stance to approve the pipelines. Trump claimed that the pipelines will generate tax revenues that can be invested in infrastructure.

 

9 -Deregulating Energy

What the Executive Order Does (per WhiteHouse.gov but edited to remove bias):

  • Directs the Environmental Protection Agency to suspend, revise, or rescind four actions related to the Clean Power Plan.

  • Directs the Attorney General to seek ‘appropriate relief’ from the courts over pending litigation related to the Clean Power Plan.

  • Rescinds Executive and Agency actions centered on the previous administration’s climate change agenda.

  • Lifts the ban on Federal leasing for coal production.

  • Lifts restrictions on the production of oil, natural gas, and shale energy.

  • Directs all agencies to conduct a review of existing actions that limit domestic energy production and suspend, revise, or rescind actions that are not mandated by law.

 

10 -Buy American, Hire American Executive Order

Labelled as a part of Trump’s America First policy, this executive order would result in less outsourcing, but critics, such as Mark Cuban, recognize the problems with outsourcing but argue that the downside of the executive order is that American companies need to be able to hire the best applicants to be able to compete globally.

 

11 -Increasing Security Budget to $54 billion

Trump raised the security budget to $54 billion as part of America First campaign, in order to keep Americans safer. Critics point out that the US by far has the largest military budget in the world, and according to the NBC, “[the] US spends more than [the] next eight biggest spenders combined.” Opponents of this change also point out that raising the military budget to such an extreme limits the budgets of other governmental organizations, such as the EPA, and organizations like The National Corporation for Public Broadcasting could be eliminated.

POLITICS

Works Cited

Granville, Kevin. "What Is TPP? Behind the Trade Deal That Died." New York Times, New York Times

    Company, 23 Jan. 2017, www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/business/

    tpp-explained-what-is-trans-pacific-partnership.html?_r=0. Accessed 12 May 2017.

"President Trump's First 100 Days." WhiteHouse.gov, www.whitehouse.gov/100-days. Accessed 12 May

    2017.

Westwood, Sarah. "Full Interview with President Trump on His First 100 Days." Washington Examiner,

    28 Apr. 2017, www.washingtonexaminer.com/

    full-interview-with-president-trump-on-his-first-100-days/article/2621516. Accessed 12 May

    2017.

Trump’s Taiwan Phone Call: A Cause for Concern

By: William H. ('20)

      On Friday, December 2nd, then President-elect Donald Trump answered a phone  call with Taiwan’s president, Tsai Ing-wen, marking the first known time since 1979 that an American president or president-elect has directly spoken with a Taiwanese president (Fisher). The call resurfaced old tensions regarding the independence of Taiwan from China. Prior to China’s civil war, starting in 1927, China was known as the Republic of China and was ruled by a nationalist government (Fisher). In 1992, both governments defined China as one body including China’s mainland and Taiwan; however, both governments also maintained their claims to represent the entirety of this body (Fisher). Trump’s call with Taiwan’s president and his accompanying tweets had raised concerns that the then President-elect’s administration would change the degree of recognition given to Taiwan’s independence by the United States. Since Trump did not make it clear whether he intended to make a policy change regarding mainland China and Taiwan, some saw Trump’s phone call and related tweets as a foreign policy blunder. Currently, with well over 100 days in office, Trump has taken no action to change the United States’ One-China policy, supporting the conclusion that his phone call and tweets were a gaffe. Understandably, one phone call may not seem significant; however, the phone call between then President-elect Trump and Taiwan’s president certainly was. Not only did the call disrupt the relative stability between China and Taiwan, but it also raised concerns over the President’s knowledge of international relations and his ability to manage healthy relationships with other nations. American citizens should be glad that mainland China and Taiwan did not presume Trump’s actions to mark a shift in policy, as this could have led to increased military tension and aggression between China and Taiwan, or even worse, China and The United States. Trump’s call and his tweets were not necessarily mistakes if he still plans on changing the United States’ One-China policy. However, his lack of explanation regarding his intentions following the call was of great concern. Just as well-managed corporations release detailed public relations statements prior to major shifts in direction to uphold healthy relationships with their investors and the public, President-elect Trump should have explained his intentions with Taiwan and how it related to policy plans regarding China and Taiwan to keep his constituents informed and to assure them of his capability to represent the United States on the global stage. The question that the American people should be asking, especially as President Trump embarks on his first foreign tour as President, is will Trump be capable of accurately, diplomatically, and wisely representing the United States abroad? Has the President surrounded himself with competent advisors who will prevent foreign policy mistakes? Was then President-elect Trump’s phone call with Taiwan simply a red herring and an undue concern, or was it a canary in the coal mine and a warning of what will come? Only time will tell.

Works Cited

Fisher, Max. “Trump, Taiwan, and China: The Controversy, Explained” The New York Times. 3

      December 2016. Web. 18 May 2016

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