Policies of Donald Trump

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The root of the problem is the president's amorality. Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision making.
—Anonymous senior White House staffer[1]
The president, I think, makes statements [and] on other occasions contradicts himself. So we've learned to watch what the president does as opposed to what he says.
John McCain[2]
Donald Trump, surrounded by his aides, is on the phone with Vladimir Putin.

Also known as the Trumpocalypse, the policies of Donald Trump are epitome of the logical extreme of a decades-long lurch to the right wing, starting from the Southern Strategy and the Nixon years, if not even earlier with the Red Scare and McCarthyism, or perhaps earlier than that with Andrew Jackson's xenophobia and authoritarianism, with several real parallels to fascist strongmen and policies identical to theirs. Either ironically, or appropriately, his aristocratic lifestyle, demeanor, Social Darwinism, and authoritarianism make him resemble an eighteenth-century European monarch, someone Americans fought not one but twoWikipedia's W.svg wars of independence from.[citation needed]

While Trump may appear stupid and self-contradictory on the outside, he is a practiced con artist who has admitted that he revels in unpredictability and chaos, which fosters severe infighting from even within his own government. His claim to notoriety is his transparently abusive, narcissistic, and authoritarian nature.

Abuse of power, promotion of violence, and support for police brutality[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Police brutality

In many ways, Trump already has his wall: that of the police unions who endorsed him. By repeating the nonsensical "war on cops" rhetoric familiar in the right wing, he is framing the narrative of the police being an occupying force positively, and many police unions are cooperating with Trump on burying so-called "sanctuary cities" that protect immigrants from deportation. "Blue Lives Matter" laws are being pushed to prevent cops from being held liable for unwarranted deaths occurring on their watch or by their hands.[3] Michael German, a former FBI agent of the Brennan Center for Justice, even warned that Trump's endorsement, incitement, and glorification of violence as a solution to society's ills is a creeping authoritarianism that would expand the power of the police as a weapon against protesters.[4] Trump already publicly called on cops to be even more brutal on suspects[5] in a speech; scores of police chiefs and officers condemned him for it.[6] During a protest in Portland, Oregon, anti-fascists faced down white supremacists with the police, in full riot gear, physically separating the two groups. But then the police started cracking down on the anti-fascist counter-protesters, throwing flash-bang grenades at them while the white supremacists, the Proud Boys and Patriot Prayer groups, cheered on the cops, who were so careless they almost killed a counter protester when one such flash bang grenade hit his head. Other counter protesters were hospitalized, including a reporter at the scene. Cops began chasing after anti-fascists, throwing flash-bangs and tear gas to disperse the crowds, again while the white supremacists cheered the police on.[7]

On Inauguration Day on January 20, 2017, hundreds of protesters, bystanders, and journalists were arrested and charged with "felony rioting".[8] At a Phoenix, Arizona rally, Trump's security forces tear gassed protesters who called attention to his anti-immigrant views.[9] The ACLU also sued police in Washington, D.C. for abusing protesters during Trump's inauguration, including denying detainees access to food and water, using "overwhelming and unlawful force" against non-violent demonstrators, enclosing more than 230 demonstrators, journalists, and legal observers during an anti-fascist bloc march, and even sexually assaulting detainees as a form of punishment and humiliation.[10] [11] During a highway blockade by protesters in October 2017, Trump-aligned police in St. Louis, Missouri arrested anyone with a camera during peaceful protests, including people who weren't protesting. St. Louis police first targeted everyone who had been livestreaming the protests, including TYT journalist Jordan Chariton and cameraman/editor Ty Bayless; 200 people were arrested overall.[12] [13] [14] It isn't just cops either: violent neo-Nazi hate groups, particularly the Rise Above Movement physically assaulted protesters and journalists, with Trump's administration doing nothing to stop them, even as the RAM posted videos of their altercations online.[15]

Trump has often been fond of violence,[16] dating all the way back to the primary. He repeatedly suggested, encouraged, supported, or outright incited[17] violence from his supporters or from Trump-friendly police.[18][19][20] Even some of his supporters admitted that they felt emboldened to commit violent acts because of his rhetoric.[21][22] His campaign, stretching all the way back to the primary, was marked with violence from his supporters to anyone he personally disliked, usually protesters and minorities, but even journalists who were white males were assaulted by his more rabid followers.[23] This led to several judges allowing lawsuits against Trump for incitement of violence, with his lawyers arguing not that he didn't incite violence, but that he was "immune" from civil lawsuits.[24]

This is particularly dangerous because rhetoric is powerful and important, and when the leader of a country dehumanizes people he dislikes, it encourages and even mandates violence.[25] When a terrorist killed people in an attack on New York, Trump immediately called for execution, complaining that the justice system was a "joke" and it takes too long to administer punishment. Legal experts immediately sounded the alarms that the terrorist wouldn't have a fair trial if Trump's death penalty rhetoric continued.[26] The long-term consequences are hard to see, but his love of violence against his opponents is in itself a policy statement, because he is actively supporting police brutality to occur against protesters, repeatedly calling for violence, and expressing disappointment when it doesn't happen.[27] Critics have feared that the hitlist will expand.[28][29] A Breitbart journalist had her arm pulled to the floor by his first campaign manager Corey Lewandowski during the primary,[30] and he had one of his Secret Service bodyguards bodyslam a photographer during one of his rallies.[31] [32] This has contributed to a growing fear that journalists and reporters will be targeted by his supporters.[33] This has already inspired Greg Gianforte to physically assault a reporter for asking him a question[34][35] and another Republican to call for lynching anyone who destroys Confederate monuments.[36]

As for abuse of power, Trump is using taxpayer money for his own personal benefit,[37] colluding with the Republican party to cover up his financial crimes (including to organized crime and oligarchs), plus getting world leaders to pay fees to Mar-a-Lago or Trump Tower when they meet him,[38] awarding sweetheart federal contracts to businesses owned by pro-Trump donors,[39] drained money from the RNC to pay for legal bills against a corruption probe,[40] pardoned a corrupt sheriff who refused to follow a court order against his policies (and went against the Justice Department's own procedure by not even waiting for a formal conviction in a trial before the pardon),[41] [42] pressuring the FBI Director to stop or impede a corruption investigation regarding his ties to Russian and American mobsters,[43] refusing to break free from severe conflicts of interest,[44][45][46][47] and using the bully pulpit to politicize the criminal justice system, disparage or punish members of the executive branch who won't toe his line, and attempt to humiliate private citizens who dare to speak out against him.[48]

Animal rights and welfare[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Animal rights

He deleted the databases on animal mistreatment and removed regulations on animal food. This means it is no longer illegal for your cat or dog to eat food containing poison. Puppy mills and experiment labs are also allowed to continue mistreating animals, and people looking to buy pets or to even eat animals, knowing they aren't being abused will no longer have this luxury, as Trump's removal of these regulations allows the worst of abuses to go without punishment or even investigation. Hygiene requirements for food will be removed under his FDA policy as well.[49][50][51]

Authoritarianism[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Authoritarianism
We’re about to enter, or may already have entered, an era of corrupt governance unprecedented in US history, and think about the pro-tyrant bias of foreign policy. Democratic regimes – say, in Europe – are by their own rules unable to offer de facto personal bribes to the US president. Putin's Russia or, for that matter, Xi's China, will be fine with sending huge business to the profiteer-in-chief. And that will cause a tilt of US policy towards authoritarian regimes.
Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize-winning economist[53]

Even at home, two journalists named Alexei Wood and Aaron Cantu both face 70 years in prison for bogus rioting charges while covering Trump's inauguration.[54][55][56] ACLU lawyer Scott Michelman insisted that these arrests punish journalists for being near the action and will "inevitably chill freedom of the press, and with it, First Amendment rights, not only of the journalists themselves, but of all of us."[57]

It always begins with the press. Back in the primary, Trump's campaign banned a ton of reporters from his rallies,[58] put several media outlets on a blacklist,[59] restricted the movement of journalists (even putting them in a pen where his supporters could jeer and threaten then),[60] limited what reporters could actually cover,[61] and allowed his staffers or bodyguards to manhandle reporters (even including one from Breitbart).[62] Trump himself regularly fuels this anti-press hatred by bitterly and repeatedly denouncing them on Twitter or in rallies, thereby enhancing a threat to the freedom of the press, if not in his country, then in others who see America as turning the other cheek on abusing journalists.[63]

This has a chilling trickle-down effect. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price had a reporter arrested for asking him a basic question.[64] Attorney General Jeff Sessions had his Justice Department prosecute and convict a woman for laughing during his confirmation hearing.[65][66] Another reporter was manhandled by FCC guards for, again, trying to ask a simple question.[67] Greg Gianforte, a Montana Republican candidate for the House of Representatives, bodyslammed a Guardian reporter, and was charged with assault on the eve of an election.[68] Gianforte, taking a page from Trump's playbook, got angry at a question he didn't like, railed against the press, and ordered the reporter removed; even Fox News came to the reporter's defense and gave detailed accounts of the assault. Meanwhile, Gianforte claimed to be the victim instead, just like Trump. Now that Gianforte won the election, there was no telling how much worse it would get for the press in the age of Trump.[69]

Trump himself has a thing for autocrats in general, praising Kim Jong-un as a gentleman,[70] Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for enshrining dictatorship into the Turkish constitution, Vladimir Putin for faintly complimenting him, Rodrigo Duterte for a drug war and martial law in a majority-Muslim province, Saddam Hussein for counter-terrorism, and even the Chinese government for the Tiananmen Square Massacre (equating that to "strength"). He sees power in the strongman, envies that power, relates to that authoritarianism, and seeks to emulate that power, even though he ultimately cares little for their countries beyond any potential business ties that he may want from those autocrats.[71][72][73][74]

Surprising no one, in July 2017, Trump sent out a tweet implying that he endorsed violence against the press, specifically, CNN.[75] Senator Pat Toomey had a reporter arrested for asking a "threatening" question not too long after.[76] South Dakota-based state Republican Lynne DiSanto shortly after that endorsed vehicular manslaughter against protesters by making light of a pro-violence meme on Facebook.[77] A week after that, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin argued that NFL players can "have free speech on their own time" as they protested police brutality by sitting or kneeling during the national anthem.[78] Robert Jeffress, an evangelical advisor, even said the players were lucky they weren't "shot in the head".[79]

In December 2017, reports surfaced of Trump considering hiring Erik Prince and Oliver North to create a private spy network to spy on the intelligence community. The "whole point" (direct quote) of such a private network is to give the paranoid President his own personal secret police coordinated by defense contractors under the direction of his sycophantic CIA Director (Mike Pompeo at that time).[80]

In March 2018, the Pennsylvania Republicans, who held a super majority in their state, got in trouble for gerrymandering their districts. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled their map unconstitutional and forced a redraw.[81] Pennsylvania's Republicans tried to appeal the decision to the US Supreme Court, but they declined. Enraged, Pennsylvania Republicans drafted bills to impeach their own Supreme Court for ruling against them. Democracy? Not for you.[82]

More and more Republican candidates in 2018, having faced tougher than expected primaries, have been emulating Donald Trump's authoritarian rhetoric and fascist scapegoating alongside his glorification of violence. These candidates are outright "echoing his xenophobia, his veiled racist appeals, his attacks on the news media, and even occasionally his calls for imprisoning his political opponents." Literal Neo-Nazis like Paul Nehlen, Arthur Jones, and Patrick Little are maneuvering within the party to try to win their primaries for 2018 despite Republicans' desperate attempts to distance themselves from those people.[83]

North Carolina's GOP supermajority is especially prone to authoritarian rhetoric and actions in this era. A bunch of constitutional amendments put on the ballot in 2018 had their names revoked to prevent people from learning what they even do [84] and their leader is even floating the idea of impeaching state Supreme Court justices if they ruled against legislative leaders in a lawsuit over constitutional amendments. This is especially important because the person suing the GOP in this wants justices to remove two of the six amendments Republicans want on the ballot, claiming the ballot language is misleading. One would remove governors’ power to appoint members to hundreds of state boards and commissions and give it to the Legislature. The other would limit a governor’s ability to make appointments to fill judicial vacancies and force them to seek approval from the legislature. [85]

Assassination attempts on his political opponents[edit]

In October 2018, an unknown assailant or group of assailants sent bombs to Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Eric Holder, John Brennan, Maxine Waters (twice), Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, George Soros, Joe Biden, Robert De Niro, James Clapper, and Cory Booker,[86] as well as the headquarters for CNN.[87] All of the targets were prominent Trump critics, all were members or supporters of the Democratic Party, and one is a news network known for criticizing Trump's policies throughout his presidency and dating back to his campaign in the 2016 primary. While nobody was harmed and the bombs did not explode, experts say this was a deliberate act of terror meant to intimidate people from criticizing the President,[88] who himself blamed the media's "anger" for bringing it on themselves.[89] [90] [91] [92] [93] [94]

Loyalty to the Dear Leader[edit]

Trump hired a lobbyist to vet any and all State Department employees for their loyalty to the President, including verifying how far their policies differ from Trump (including searching through their social media to see if they've ever said anything anti-Trump).[95]

Dehumanization[edit]

Trump reminded them the crowds loved his rhetoric on immigrants along the campaign trail. Acting as if he were at a rally, he recited a few made-up Hispanic names and described potential crimes they could have committed, such as rape or murder. Then, he said, the crowds would roar when the criminals were thrown out of the country — as they did when he highlighted crimes by illegal immigrants at his rallies, according to a person present for the exchange and another briefed on it later. [Stephen] Miller and [Jared] Kushner laughed.
[96]

Finding an enemy of whole groups of people is an easy way to get support from fringe extremists. Trump launched his campaign calling Mexicans criminals and rapists, and has spent at least half his presidency disparaging, mocking, and demeaning everyone else who offends him. By May 2018, however, he ramped up his scapegoating and repeatedly called certain criminal immigrants "animals". Removing the humanity of a person is incredibly dangerous, as it begins to build an impetus for whole groups, usually marginalized communities, to not only have their cries for help ignored, but regarded as "unhuman". Additionally, Trump's own incoherent language has prompted time-wasting arguments of what he really means; for instance, some moderates have interpreted his attack on Mexicans as "just the illegal immigrants and already-criminals" and the "animals" remark on just the Mexican MS-13 gang,[97] though the latter is not convincing. This is as much a trickle down effect as his spiels about the press and protesters, because calling some people from a group evil, claiming their evil justifies his policies, and conflating immigrants with Latinos and Latinos with criminals and criminals with animals will be a green light for his government to arrest or deport non-violent (even legal) immigrants with no criminal records.[98][99][100][101][102]

His recent rhetoric against gang members, for instance, spurred a "gang sweep" where unaccompanied teens with no gang ties were either being arrested or were in danger of being arrested by government officials who saw no difference between normal teens wearing certain clothes and gang members wearing those same clothes by coincidence.[103]

When Trump's policy of migrant family separation — a new policy unique to his administration — was confronted with immense public outrage, he doubled down and tripled down, saying he refused to let the country turn into a "migrant camp",[104] and accused immigrants of "infesting our country".[105][106][107] In just his second month of running for president in 2015, Trump said migrants were bringing "tremendous infectious disease" to the country.[108] The trickle-down effect is here yet again: migrant kids who were separated from their parents and detained can be heard wailing in agony at a Border Patrol facility, and a Border Patrol agent can be heard joking "We have an orchestra here."[109] His Department of Health and Human Services stopped counting all the refugee families detained by federal authorities, potentially allowing for more abuses.[110] The forcible separation of children from their parents with potentially valid asylum claims is probably not a crime against humanity according to international law specialist David Luban of Georgetown Law because it likely does not meet the definition of "civilian population", though it is still a violation of human rights laws.[111]

Criminalizing protests[edit]

Since Trump was elected, more than 20 states have proposed bills that would crack down on protests and demonstrations, in a move that UN experts have branded incompatible with US obligations under international human rights law. ALEC, a lobbying group funded by Koch Industries, is spearheading laws that increase penalties for protesting energy pipelines (or just protesting in large groups), ban protesters from wearing masks during demonstrations, and in some states, protect drivers from liability if they "accidentally" murder protesters. Bills that would give severe financial penalties or even jail time for obstructing streets and highways, trespassing near energy infrastructures, even make it illegal to "plan to conspire" to protest. There is no requirement of malicious intent, and planning a protest that involves trespass or other forms of lawbreaking counts as a conspiracy. Some CEOs such as Kelcy Warren have even said that people who disrupted the Dakota Access Pipeline should be "removed from the gene pool".[112] [113] Trump chose not to lower US flags held in federal buildings in honor of reporters shot to death by a gunman.[114]

Under Trump's stewardship, the FBI has targeted black activist and protest movements by smearing them as "black identity extremists," and claiming "alleged" police abuses are "fueling more violence" from the black community. This is false on its face, but it isn't the first time the FBI has cracked down on civil disobedience from the working class.[115]

Fake news, alternative facts, and "enemy of the people"[edit]

See the main articles on this topic: Fake newsTruthiness, and Freedom of speech

When the media contradicts what Trump says, they are usually accused of spreading "fake news" whereas Trump’s lies are defended as "alternative facts", the single most Orwellian thing to ever appear in modern American society. Just like any strongman, Trump refuses to admit he is ever wrong or misinformed, and some within his party have even claimed that the President is the only credible source of information.[116]

After repeatedly calling the media "the enemy of the people", Trump banned The New York Times, Buzzfeed News, CNN, the BBC, the Los Angeles Times, and Politico from attending a so-called "gaggle" in Sean Spicer's office on January 24, 2017, which took the place of the normal daily press briefing. Instead, he allowed Breitbart, Fox News, the One America News Network, ABC, CBS, Bloomberg, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Times, all but four (ABC, Wall Street Journal (the news division), CBS, and Bloomberg) of which are practically pro-Trump propaganda outlets.[117]

This is another example of the power of rhetoric. Several authoritarian leaders in fifteen other countries began directly adopting Trump's "fake news" rhetoric to legitimize dissidents, much like how often governments began accusing their enemies of being terrorists in the wake of Bush's War on Terror. Trump is providing a context and framework for all sorts of authoritarian or democratic leaders, and others who are dissatisfied or upset by critical media coverage — to undermine and discredit reporting.[118] His federal agencies have been purging even the mere mention of words like "climate", "warming", "planet", "sea levels", or even "temperature".[119]

This trickled down to his supporters. Milo Yiannopolous, a well known Trump supporter, advocated for vigilante squads to gun down journalists.[120] [121] Two days later, an armed white gunman shot up a newspaper building and killed five reporters. [122] Sean Hannity, another Trump supporter, blamed a black female Democrat for the shooting.[123] In August 2018, a Trump supporter called in to CSPAN and threatened to assassinate two CNN pundits, Don Lemon and Brian Stelter, for criticizing Trump voters. According to Stelter, this wasn't the first time they were threatened with death by Trump supporters.[124]

On Sunday 22 January, 2017, Trump's spokesman Sean Spicer denied reports about attendance at his inauguration being lower than that at Obama's inaugurations despite photographic evidence and evidence from Washington public transport for lower attendance. Spicer made unspecified threats to 'hold the press accountable.'[125] Trump added, "And I think they’re going to pay a big price."[126] On Monday 23 January, the war of words continued with widespread belief that the Trump team is lying. The credibility of presidential statements was put into question. Trump's team tried to convince people that lies are 'alternative facts'.[127][128][129]

Adam Schiff, a Democratic congressman from California, said:

If Trump can't handle the press on crowd size, just wait until they report on the economy, budget and healthcare, anything unfavorable he will call a lie. [129]

Internet censorship[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Censorship

Trump signed a bill that was supposed to curb sex trafficking sites, but it was written so broadly that it allows prosecutors to order the immediate shutdown of a site or parts of it that fail to monitor the already hard-to-monitor comments, who are accused of soliciting for sex work. The long-standing Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act has allowed the internet to thrive on user-generated content without holding platforms and ISPs responsible for whatever users might create. However, with Trump's FOSTA-SESTA act, an exemption was made for sex trafficking, and many backers of the bill (including Disney and Fox) are now more likely to try to shut down all their competitors online.[130]

Privatizing intelligence[edit]

In a military budget bill signed by the President, the law that first chartered the CIA "removed language requiring intelligence agencies to spend money according to Congress's instructions", and replaced it with "a provision that allows the agencies to move money around freely and without Congress's knowledge". This means that the already-paramilitary intelligence community, including the CIA, will now be privatized, and Blackwater founder Erik Prince, the brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, had been pushing for "a private intelligence force" that would report directly, and only to Trump and (now ex-) CIA director Mike Pompeo.[131] For a man known to use private guards instead of the Secret Service, it is no surprise that Trump is eager to further entrench his own power and detachment from the rule of law.[132]

Abusing law enforcement[edit]

Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE), as part of their unprecedented powers under Trump, will now be able to track down license plates as they search for undocumented immigrants.[133] It also wants to join the intelligence community with powers comparable to the NSA or FBI, but they've only gained serious traction under Trump.[134] Due to immigration being a broad issue, ICE has counter-proliferation, money laundering, counterterror, and cybercrime operations already under their belt; however, if they join the spook group, they would gain the power of warrantless surveillance and borderline paramilitary authority as potentially part of Homeland Security.[135] [136] ICE already has worked to strip citizenship from naturalized Americans without already being a spook agency.[137]

ICE even began arresting lawful permanent residents, not just undocumented immigrants.[138] ICE has tripled the number of undocumented immigrants arrested without criminal records, does so by "sweeping the streets and rounding up likely immigrants." [139]

In North Carolina, this has yet another chilling trickle-down effect. 20 legal immigrants and permanent residents were arrested for "illegally" voting due to confusion and misdirection and not because of some conspiracy to commit a crime. They "could still be convicted and imprisoned" — or even deported ― without the Justice Department proving they intended to break the law. [140]

Obstruction of justice and ignoring the rule of law[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Rule of law

Jeff Sessions was his first attorney general. Sessions is notorious for his racism and disdain for civil rights.[141][142] Sessions also got close to Russians and lied about that when asked. Democrats called for his resignation.[143]

Trump fired Jeff Sessions immediately after the 2018 midterm elections. Sessions' chief of staff Matthew Whitaker is now acting replacement. It is still unclear what this means for Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who has been overseeing Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Trump's ties with Russia after Jeff Sessions recused himself, citing a conflict of interest.[142] Trump insisted that Sessions "should have never recused himself."[142] Whitaker, a GOP loyalist and Trump supporter[144] who worked for a company that was shut down and fined for scamming,[145] is of the opinion that the Special Counsel has overstepped his mandate by investigating Trump's finances.[142] Whitaker is openly critical of the investigation and asserted there was no evidence for collusion or Russian interference in 2016 U.S. Presidential elections.[146] Critics question his impartiality[147] and worry that Whitaker will be unwilling to protect the Special Counsel investigation from political interference.[144] Some top Democrats and protesters have asked Whitaker to recuse himself, but this seems unlikely.[146] Meanwhile, legal scholars are debating the constitutionality and legality of Whitaker's appointment, as he has not been confirmed by the Senate. Once again, there are calls for legislation to protect the Special Counsel, this time from Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Mitt Romney of Utah.[148][149]

Trump considered firing Mueller (at least) twice. In August 2018, he tried to get Jeff Sessions to end the probe.[150] In any case, the more Mueller and his team investigate, the more evidence of wrongdoing they find.[151] Because this is an ongoing investigation, Mueller and his team know much more than what has been made public.[152] Given the charter of this Special Counsel and the nature of this investigation, it is clear that the Mueller probe must be allowed to reach its logical conclusion. Any attempt by Donald Trump or any of his associates to "fight back" may be considered obstruction of justice, as are the firing of James Comey,[152] and refusing to be interviewed by investigators.[153] Trump's steadfast refusal to cooperate with law enforcement may lead to the Special Counsel issuing a subpoena to compel his testimony before a grand jury. The situation might escalate into a (multi-year) legal battle between Trump's attorneys and Mueller's team.[154] In September 2018, the Mueller team reportedly stopped insisting on a personal interview and agreed to accept written answers from Trump.[155]

Trump has also attempted to violate the rule of law in 2018 with his acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker. Regarding this, incoming chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff said,[156]

The president of the United States is discussing a case in which he is implicated with the attorney general. That is wrong at every level. And, of course, it will taint anything that this acting attorney general does, any role he plays in this investigation. This is a real assault on the rule of law.

Zero tolerance and punitive policies[edit]

Trump meeting with Border Patrol agents to ask them if they can't be just a bit rougher when they detain people, please?

Trump reportedly wants to "close the border", whatever that means. His sheer disdain for immigration is legendary, and his policies, according to Homeland Security chief Kirstjen Nielsen, are punitive, ruthless, vindictive, and based almost solely on cruelty for the sake of intimidating marginalized communities.[157] [158] His harsh rhetoric and reactionary policies have emboldened some within his government into committing fear-based murders of immigrants at worst, as you will soon see, and in another case, incompetence merging with apathy as the government grows further indifferent to the lives of immigrants no matter their age or fate.

A Border Patrol agent admitted he opened fire on a group of people he thought were immigrants rushing toward him. One named Claudia Gonzalez, an indigenous woman from Guatemala studying at a university, was shot in the head by the agent.[159]

ICE, which is now infamous for breaking up families at an astonishing rate,[160] sent close to 1,500 children to the Department of Health and Human Services for further processing, all of whom suddenly went missing. Its policy was to transfer these now-alone children into sponsors, who would then take care of the kids, but these sponsors often have no relation to the children, and the government - as exemplified by John Kelly's "foster care or whatever" comment - doesn't really care too much what happens after. And yet, they still lost track of nearly 1,500 children, with the HHS even declaring the government was not "legally responsible" for them. [161] [162] [163]

A unique hallmark of Trump's presidency has been to separate families for crossing the border,[164] which has caused at least one instance of a refugee committing suicide after being torn away from their family members.[165] This is known as "zero tolerance policy," which the media has bypassed in favor of the more scathing and accurate "separating kids from their parents" sadism.[166] Attorney General Jeff Sessions restricted asylum access for victims of gang and domestic violence. He says this is to reduce illegal immigration. This has been derided as needlessly cruel.[167] Migrant kids who were separated from their families, including one parent who lost her kid while breastfeeding them, are put in a detention facility owned by a private company, and ICE treats them like prisoners (including only two hours outside the facility per day for each kid). [168]

The Trump administration established concentration camps for migrant children,[169] [170] and identified their first internment camp in Texas on the anniversary of his campaign for president.[171] Given Trump's campaign-era support for FDR's internment camps, this should be no surprise.[172] [173] [174] This exact policy of separation and detention inevitably causes devastating psychological stress, even mental illness for the kids.[175] Children are put in cages,[176][177] fenced away from the guards and their parents, and are treated like prisoners, forced to wear yellow wristbands — a Bush-era policy — for identification.[178] In a Border Patrol warehouse in Texas, hundreds of children were detained in small cages made by metal fencing, including 20 kids in one cage. This facility is divided into separate wings for unaccompanied children, adults on their own, and mothers and fathers with children. No reporters are allowed near it.[179] As you might expect, some state-run detention facilities have conditions so bad, "children were running away, screaming, throwing furniture and attempting suicide." [180] Trump's 2017 federal hiring freeze has left many prisons, detention centers, and internment camps understaffed, leading to an increase in prison violence.[181] [182]

It goes further. Toddlers, or "children at tender ages" were being separated from their families and put in one of three to four detention facilities with no regard for the resultant psychological trauma.[183][184] [185] [186][187] There's even a lawsuit alleging children were forcibly injected with drugs against their wishes; some were left unable to walk and fearful of others as they experienced pain that they didn't understand. This was going on before Trump, due to an old policy of outsourcing detention to private prisons.[188] [189] He's alluded to the victims of his policies being "crisis actors".[190]

After weeks of widespread public and political outrage, Trump signed an executive order ending family separation, which ultimately meant that instead of just kids in concentration camps, whole families will be in concentration camps, and he'll do next to nothing to stop the kids who were already separated and detained.[191][192] His executive order still leaves the Zero Tolerance policy in effect.[193] Leaked memos revealed Trump had always planned on housing immigrants in concentration camps (which he calls tent cities), whether through separation or family detention.[194]

It was later revealed by MSNBC that the Trump administration never actually stopped their separation policy. Instead of separating them by default, they force refugees to choose between leaving the country with their kids (self-deportation) or leaving the country without them.[195] Immigrant U.S. Army reservists and recruits who enlisted in the military with a promised path to citizenship are being abruptly discharged.[196] Migrant kids kept in these concentration camps are reportedly being drugged to make them more compliant and numb, and denied water as a form of punishment.[197]

Thousands of detainees are being sent to at least one federal prison where conditions are so bad and staff are so underfunded, medical officials in the prison warn that the detainees will die.[198] Trump also confirmed he and his administration wants to deport people without any due process.[199] A man diagnosed with a mental illness was put in solitary confinement, internationally recognized as a form of torture, before taking his life.[200] A child kept in an ICE detention camp died due to negligence from the guards, it has been alleged as well.[201]

Pregnant women detained by ICE under Trump have been denied medical care, shackled around the stomach, and abused; some had miscarriages, and were not given any help or care at all.[202] Further torture, such as forcible strips, physical assault, and drinking toilet water, was committed by the guards to the children. [203]

The Trump administration, by September 2018, will now ignore a federal court agreement that "strictly limits" the conditions under which authorities can detain migrant children. Tens of thousands more immigrants will be detained for longer and under quicker procedures than before, arguing these "legal loopholes" hinder executive policy. By ditching the Flores agreement, the Trump administration will oversee new detention centers that will house an additional 12,000 immigrants, including children, possibly indefinitely.[204] [205] [206]This means Trump is actively shredding the rule of law, and much like Andrew Jackson before him, is set to simply ignore judicial rulings that do not agree with him. [207] [208]

Even Christian refugees aren't being allowed to enter the country, despite promises from the president himself that he'd protect them. The number of Christian refugees granted entry into the U.S. has dropped by more than 40 percent over the past year, and Iraqi Christians are among those being put in detention camps under the Trump administration.[209]

Climate Change and Environmental Protection[edit]

See the main articles on this topic: Climate change and Pollution
The iconic bald eagle was one of the species saved by the Endangered Species Act.

The Trump administration has proposed a number of changes to the Endangered Species Act (ESA) that make it easier to eliminate protection for any given species. Signed into law in 1973 by Richard Nixon, the ESA has proven instrumental in saving a multitude of creatures from extinction. Success stories include the bald eagle, America's national icon, and the grizzly bear in the Yellowstone National Park. Automatic protections for species deemed "threatened" or "endangered" by biologists would also be removed. Whether or not a given species deserves protection would be considered on a case-by-case basis. The proposed changes also get rid of the requirement that precludes biologists from considering the economic impact of protecting a threatened or endangered species. The original ESA justified this requirement by arguing that it is next to impossible to estimate the price of a living thing on the brink of extinction.[210]

The Trump Administration reversed an Obama-era rule banning the use of neonicotinoid pesticides, known to be harmful to bees, and genetically modified food crops on natural reserves, where limited farming is allowed.[211]

Trump is set to eliminate NASA research on global warming which incidentally will make it harder for people to find out what is happening. His EPA Chief, Scott Pruitt, outlined a proposal that limits how often science can be used to make agency-wide decisions.[212] Trump also removed an Obama policy protecting oceans; now even the Great Lakes can be polluted.[213]

Trump is rescinding a great many orders which Obama made cutting greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. There is strong opposition to this and there will be legal challenges.

Large majorities of Americans in red and blue states alike support strong action to reduce carbon pollution from the nation's power plants,[214] and the clean power plan is supported by a broad and diverse coalition of states, municipalities, power companies, leading businesses, consumer advocates, faith organizations and many others. These supporters will turn out in force to oppose the administration's outrageous attack on the United States' only nationwide limits on carbon pollution from power plants – safeguards that are essential to protecting our public health, securing a clean energy economy and yielding a safer climate for our children.
—Tomás Carbonell, director of regulatory policy and senior attorney at the Environmental Defense Fund[215]

On March 28, 2017, Trump signed an executive order to remove Obama's climate change policies and to bring back the coal industry.[216][217]

In early June, Trump took the United States out of the Paris Agreement despite intense lobbying from people concerned about climate change. It is unclear whether this will help or harm Trump.[218] He followed that up by announcing he was going to repeal the Clean Power Plan as the first step to eliminating it altogether.[219] In spite of what he has been doing, the U.S. in 2017 was not only one of the few countries that managed to reduce their carbon emissions, but also the one that reduced the most. This is thanks in part to the phasing our of coal in favor of natural gas and renewable energy and to a decline in energy demand. Furthermore, the U.S. remains one of the leading investors in green energy.[220]

Disaster relief in Puerto Rico[edit]

Politically motivated ingrates. —President Trump on hurricane victims who criticized him.[221]

On the eve of Category 4 Hurricane Harvey barreling towards Texas, Trump appointed deputy chief of staff Kirstjen Nielsen to oversee Harvey. Nielsen is one of the same officials most responsible for the Bush administration's failure to prepare for Hurricane Katrina.[222] True to form, he rescinded Obama's flood-risk rule weeks before Hurricane Harvey hit Houston.[223]

Trump in Puerto Rico, managing to actually make things worse by visiting

After Hurricane Maria decimated Puerto Rico, Trump's general silence and lack of action had been so deafening, even Bush's Katrina can't compare. Puerto Ricans, who are American citizens, faced four to six months without power, dangerous levels of flooding, increasingly impossible to pay costs in the middle of an economic depression pre-hurricane,[224] dwindling food, water, and gas supplies [225] lack of communication (and shoddy connection at best), a destroyed agricultural industry (which powers its economy), and a weak dam about to collapse near 70,000 people.[226] People were living on their roofs to avoid flooding. 1,360 out of 1,600 cellphone towers on the island are out. Nursing homes had patients that are dehydrated and the elderly were especially vulnerable to death due to lack of refrigeration for insulin. Puerto Rico is an island of three million people, and all of them had no power, meaning they couldn't keep their food refrigerated and some ultimately died due to the lack of air conditioning. Most of its hospitals lacked electricity or fuel for generators in the middle of this humanitarian crisis.[227] So what did he do instead? Criticize Puerto Ricans who had dared to point out he'd done nothing to help, including launching personal attacks against the mayor of San Juan.[228]

Even after FEMA finally did its fucking job and sent emergency relief teams down there, there was nothing they can do beyond that without the money, the kind of money Trump himself rescinded just before a previous hurricane (Harvey). He had no plan to rebuild Puerto Rico long-term. He gave it no time, he wasn't not giving any drinking water to supply Puerto Rico's quickly-dwindling resource, and instead, he had focused more on attacking the National Football League for some of its players criticizing him.[229] [230][231]

In fact, Trump chose to mock Puerto Rico for its "massive debt" and infrastructure woes, claiming, with no basis in reality, that the island was "doing fine" as it struggled to survive post-hurricane catastrophe.[232] He followed that up by denying a request for shipping water to Puerto Rico, rationalizing that oil pipelines mattered more.[233]

In his visit to Puerto Rico, he had FEMA delete facts and erase reports on how many people still lack drinking water or electricity in Puerto Rico,[234] complained about the cost of relief efforts, said Puerto Ricans should feel lucky Maria wasn't a "real catastrophe" like Katrina,[235] argued Puerto Rico's debt would have to be wiped out as a precondition for full relief, threw a bunch of paper towels at hurricane victims from a stage and told a victim to "have a good time," refused to promise he'd ever rebuild the island's infrastructure,[236] denied food stamps to hurricane victims,[237] and he continued to act very slowly in establishing any relief whatsoever.[238] [239] [240] [241] [242]

The final death toll is 2,975, a mere two away from matching the total deaths from 9/11. Katrina's death toll in New Orleans was 1400. [243] [244] On the 17th anniversary of 9/11, Rachel Maddow and Senator Jeff Merkley revealed Trump cut FEMA's budget by nearly 10 million dollars and used those funds for ICE instead, including deportations and the concentration camps.[245] [246] He later denied that 3000 people died in the hurricane season, claimed he rebuilt Puerto Rico (and they recovered all power and electricity a year later), and blamed the deaths on Democrats.[247]

It turns out that Trump deliberately told FEMA to withhold funds for emergency relief that were earmarked for Puerto Rico because he was enraged upon hearing that the Puerto Rican government was supposedly using disaster funds to solve its debt crisis (it should go without saying this turned out to be complete horseshit). In fact, he reportedly shouted, "I don't want a single damn cent going to that island!"[248]

Environmental Protection Agency[edit]

Living up to his climate change denial, Trump is looking to completely destroy the EPA's ability to enforce regulations on climate change, effectively hollowing out the EPA and turning it into a virtual skeleton crew.[249][250][251][252] This even includes gutting enforcement of anti-pollution laws, potentially signing a repeal of the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts, precipitating lead poisoning on a greater scale, and allowing corporations to pollute your air and your water.[253][254][255][256][257] He also issued a directive forcing government agencies to stop reporting on climate change. All agencies, in fact, were forced to no longer report to the press, allowing only the White House any chance to air out information only Trump wants to hear.[258][259][260] He also intends to repeal the Clean Power Plan, which set guidelines for how states should reduce greenhouse gas emissions.[261]

Trump and Republicans in Congress always wanted to abolish the Environmental Protection Agency (after Nixon created it).[262] He appointed Scott Pruitt, a man who filed lawsuits against the EPA, to be the head of the EPA. He later booted all scientists in favor of industry lobbyists, including Robert Phalen, who argued the air is "too clean" in America. [263]

From there, things have taken a turn for the worse.[264] The EPA has been severely curtailed, with much of its regulations and programs becoming rescinded or rolled back, and even removing all Obama era climate change programs in the government. [265] [266] This means he's removing protections from climate change, exacerbating the damage from storms due to his cuts, politicizing environmental issues, allowing pollution and food poisoning to occur more frequently.[267][268][269][270][271][272] He even cut a "life-saving" program that helps children specifically because said program mentioned climate change,[273] itself a word that he banned from being used in his administration.[274][275][276]

Pollution[edit]

After canceling Obama's Clean Power Plan, which regulated the amount of carbon generated by fossil fuel companies, the EPA did a study of the effects of the CPP's removal. It concluded an additional 1,400 people will die annually die to pollution-related preventable illnesses. [277] [278]

The EPA eliminated Obama-era rules on coal power production, giving states the power to regulate their own plants. Critics argue this will massively increase air pollution will pose a serious threat to public health. Acting EPA administrator Andrew Wheeler countered that the EPA exceeded its authority with said rules and removing them would lower electricity prices. In any case, Trump is fulfilling his campaign promises to undo Obama's environmental protection legacy and to boost the coal industry.[279]

Renewable energy[edit]

Trump is looking to kneecap the solar industry by hiking prices higher and removing their competitive advantage against oil and gas, something that Putin did.[280] Even the Heritage Foundation and ALEC think that's insane.[281]

In 2018, as part of the ongoing trade war between the U.S. and China, Trump imposed tariffs on solar power imports. Since many solar power companies operating in the U.S. are Chinese-owned, this will have a significant effect on the what is currently one of the fastest growing sectors of the U.S. economy, employing more than 250,000 people. Billions of dollars worth of installation projects have been shelved. There is, however, a glimpse of hope in this seemingly darkening picture. Many solar power companies are investing more and more in automation and as a result will become less dependent on imports, especially from China. This in turns will reduce prices without outsourcing American jobs. Thus, Trump's tariffs, as least in this particular instance, are actually beneficial to American industry.[282]

On 31 January 2018, Trump's administration asked for 72% in cuts to renewable energy and energy efficiency programs in the Energy Department.[283]

National parks and monuments[edit]

The natural wonders of the land are under attack from Trump and Zinke, who want to reduce the size of national monuments and prevent future presidents from protecting the environment like Obama did.[284] Ryan Zinke wants to hike up entry fees to national parks and lease adjacent federal land to fossil fuel companies for mining and drilling, which will endanger the national parks. [285]

In December 2017, he used his frankly unlimited power as president to reduce Utah's national monuments and reduce their public land by 2 million acres, the largest reduction in public land ever.[286] [287]

Civil rights and human rights[edit]

Torture[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Torture

Trump thinks torture works and wants to bring it back.[288]

He's already allowing ICE to abuse detainees to get them to drop their ACLU claims,[289] including destroying records of sexual assault, deaths in custody, and physical abuse.[290] Boca Raton's GEO Group, a powerful private prison, is running a facility on behalf of ICE, and according to the ACLU, tortures whistleblowers at its private immigration detention facility in Aurora, Colorado. ICE agents at GEO's 1,500-bed Colorado detention center are "retaliating against Iraqi nationals who have joined an ACLU class-action lawsuit to stop the U.S. from deporting them." Iraqi inmates have been "denied food, water, and access to the restroom," so they could "voluntarily" signal ICE to deport them.[291]

Civil rights[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Civil rights

Trump intends to, and in some ways already has, rolled back efforts to hold police officers accountable when they kill unarmed minorities. He is also looking to dismantle all civil rights agencies in the federal government, including the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (Labor Department), the Office of Civil Rights Division (Education Department), and the EPA's environmental justice program, which "offers aid to minority communities exposed to health hazards from pollution."[292][293]

After his initial announcement on Twitter, Trump officially gave the order for the military to ban transgender Americans from military service. The order stops the military from funding gender reassignment surgery, bars any new entries from trans Americans, and allows the Defense Secretary to determine whether or not to purge all currently-serving trans soldiers from the armed forces.[294][295] He also rescinded Obama era protections for trans workers, giving way for them to be fired for being trans.[296]

On the same day as his trans ban, Trump pardoned Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was found guilty for illegal racial profiling of Latinos in Maricopa County, Arizona. This was highly unusual because pardons usually happen after a conviction, which did not occur for Arpaio because they were still getting ready for the trial. This pardon, Trump's first, is seen as a signal to law enforcement that they can and will crackdown further on immigrants and minorities since they know the President has their back.[297]

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is rolling back the civil rights division in the Justice Department, under-staffing it and shifting its focus away from civil rights in general.[298] This includes making reducing consent decrees, which allows court-enforced reforms and oversight; these led to the country successfully desegregating school systems, reforming police departments, ensuring access for the disabled, and defending the religious. But Sessions says no, that's not a good thing, because of course.[299] He is empowering political appointees to do the dirty work of Donald Trump, because the civil service doesn't want to follow his orders.[300] Affirmative action in college admissions has been targeted for removal.[301] This even means using the Justice Department to re-segregate schools.[302]

Religious freedom[edit]

Trump got Attorney General Jeff Sessions to issue a government-wide "legal guidance" allowing special rights for the religious under the banner of "religious liberty." This means anyone who has a religious or "moral" obligation can deny any service and freely discriminate on the basis of healthcare, gay rights, women's rights, and even disaster relief. This was in response to an executive order President Donald Trump signed in May 2017 declaring religious freedom to be a driving policy for his administration.[303]

Trump does not care about the religious freedom on non-Christians. In fact, he banned people from several Muslim majority countries from entering the U.S. on his first week in office.[304] When Sally Yates, the acting Attorney General, refused to comply, Trump immediately had her fired. In addition, when six different judges, some of whom were Republican-appointed, ruled against the Muslim travel ban, Trump simply ignored them and ordered his government to keep enforcing the ban anyway. Eventually, he had to back down, and is in the process of revising the Muslim ban.

Surprisingly, however, atheist refugees may jump a few queues to get into the U.S. if they qualify as members of "religious minorities".[305]

Gay rights[edit]

Trump's empowering of homophobes had a chilling effect on LGBT rights and public perceptions. In one year, non-gay Americans are far less likely to be accepting or hold favorable views of the LGBT community during the Trump era. He refused to let a Pride flag fly on National Coming Out Day,[306] fired his entire HIV/AIDS advisory council,[307] he was the first president to attend an anti-LGBT summit,[308] and he appointed homophobe Sam Brownback to be an ambassador-at-large for "religious freedom" in his administration.[309] Not only has he appointed dozens of anti-gay judges to the courts, he stopped declaring June LGBT Pride Months, refused to mention gay and bisexual men or transgender women in his World AIDS Day declaration, removed LGBT as a population category on the 2020 Census,[310] and rolled back the collection of sexual orientation and gender identity data on surveys.[311] He rescinded protections for transgender people.[312]

By January 2018, GLAAD, a pro-gay rights group surveyed Americans asking if they are accepting of LGBT community. Thirty percent of those polled said they would be "uncomfortable" to learn a family member is LGBTQ, up from 27 percent last year. 31 percent reported that they would be "uncomfortable" to have their child taught by an LGBTQ educator, up from 28% last year. 31% also said they would be "uncomfortable" to have an LGBTQ doctor, up from 28 percent the previous year. Less than half of non-LGBTQ adults, 49 percent, reported being “very” or “somewhat” comfortable with LGBTQ people across seven situations, down from 53 percent the previous year. This is "the first time the Accelerating Acceptance report has shown a decrease in acceptance for LGBTQ people." [313] [314]

The number of respondents who said they would be somewhat or very uncomfortable having LGBT members of their faith communities, learning that a family member was LGBT, having their child taught by an LGBT teacher or study LGBT history in school, finding out that their doctor was LGBT, or even seeing same-sex couples holding hands all ticked upward.[315]

At one point, some media outlets believed Trump was actually pro-LGBTQ because of statements in his book The America That We Deserve:[316]

[I wish for a nation] unencumbered by bureaucratic ineptitude, government regulation, confiscatory tax policies, racism, discrimination against women, or discrimination against people based on sexual orientation

And in a CBN interview:[317]

I know many, many gay people. Tremendous people. And to be honest with you, as far as civil unions are concerned, I haven't totally formed my opinion. But there can be no discrimination against gays. I'm against gay marriage; I took a lot of heat for that.

Women's rights[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Feminism
Women's March in Washington on January 21, 2017, one day after his inauguration.

Trump has cut funding for large numbers of organizations worldwide that protect women from sexual violence, provide contraceptives and the like. Many organizations worldwide are appealing for funding and without alternative funding face closure. Tens of thousands of women are at risk.[318] Trump's decision to cut said funding may or may not be due to the fact of him being a misogynist.[citation needed]

The abortion gag rule was expanded to unprecedented levels under Trump, broadening it to include global health funding provided by the State Department, the U.S. Agency for International Development and the Defense Department, totaling $8.8 billion; even G. W. Bush only had affected 600 million in total funding. The expanded ban will "cause an increase in unintended pregnancies, unsafe abortions and maternal deaths."[319]

In response to record-low teen pregnancies, Trump's administration set up new guidelines pushing for abstinence only education, which would cause teen pregnancies to skyrocket.[320]

Amid a reported "epidemic" of sexual harassment on campus, which disproportionately affects women, Education Secretary Betsy DeVoss rolled back Obama's previous guidelines by narrowing the definition of sexual harassment. This allows schools to cherry-pick which "level of evidence to rely on when investigating misconduct," and only be accountable for complaints which are formally filed. [321]

Conflict of interest and nepotism[edit]

Constitutional lawyers and White House ethics counsellors from Democratic and Republican administrations have warned Donald Trump his presidency might be blocked by the electoral college if he does not give up ownership of at least some of his business empire. … Yet much of what he has said and done since winning the election suggests that Trump comes to the presidency in the spirit of a tycoon making a new acquisition, overseeing the merger of Trump Inc and America Inc – a merger in which it is far from clear which would be the senior partner.
—Julian Borger[322]

Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner is a key adviser despite complaints about nepotism.[323] Kushner also lied extensively about his business connection to Russia on his security clearance form.[324][325]

Documents show that Trump is still receiving benefits from his business interests.[326]

Being a family member, a donor to his campaign, or a family member to a donor of his campaign is a guaranteed way to get a spot on in the Trump administration.[327]

Deconstruction of the administrative state[edit]

Like something out of a Randroid's dream, Trump will issue a series of executive orders practically demolishing the government in nearly all aspects, starting with his federal worker hiring freeze (which is especially hurting soldiers' and veterans' families hard).[328] A second executive order would force the executive branch to "reorganize" governmental functions and eliminate "unnecessary agencies", and he has already started by refusing to fill thousands of vacancies in his government. Given that he has had two climate change deniers at the head of the EPA (Scott Pruitt and acting administrator Andrew R. Wheeler), a creationist as Education Secretary (Betsy DeVos), a proposal to massively slash billions of dollars from Ben Carson's HUD agencies,[329] and a propensity to fire people who disagree with him,[330][331][332] Trump is already on track to utterly dismantle every single aspect of the government that isn't solely dependent on the President's word (like the military, whose budget he wants to increase by over $50 billion).[333][334][335][336]

Budget[edit]

A budget provides the best peek into the mindset of a president, based on what he prioritizes and what he does not. Trump's budgets, as well as his healthcare policies, paint the image of a man who hates the poor and the weak, and demonstrably wants them to die.[337]

Weakening the civil service[edit]

He signed executive orders that makes it easier to fire civil servants, public workers, and career government bureaucrats/technocrats.[338]

Hollowing out the State Department[edit]

Rex Tillerson: the hollowed-out man

Despite nominating Rex Tillerson to be Secretary of State, Trump has actually done more to de-fang the State Department, by firing the old Obama-era appointees, prompting several of the non-partisans to resign, and just not picking any replacements. The State Department is being sidelined from its mission to build alliances with diplomacy and negotiation. The State Department is shut out of meetings with foreign leaders, key State posts are left unfilled, department officials are afraid to speak out for fear of getting fired, and the White House not soliciting many department staffers for their policy advice. Furthermore, Trump declared that he wants to cut billions of dollars from the State Department's budget, effectively leaving it as a rudderless ghost ship.[339][340][341][342] Incidentally, this is all in spite of Tillerson being a former ExxonMobil CEO, who had a 500 billion dollar oil deal with Russia that was canceled by Obama's post-Crimea sanctions. By insisting on defunding the State Department, Trump is de-fanging Tillerson's ability to conduct negotiations with other countries and preventing Tillerson from getting that oil deal restarted.

By now, every major expert sees Tillerson as a failure for presiding over the death of diplomacy by gutting the State Department and forcing out longtime employees without any replacements. He "eliminated entire segments of the department," like the tracking of war crimes.[343] He imposed limits on transfers inside the organization and made it harder to replace people in the State Department.[344] He cut off the department from vital recruiting sources, like the Presidential Management Fellow program, because he called it inefficient. He publicly defended a Trump administration proposal to cut his department's budget by 30%, and devised a plan to cut the permanent staff by 8%.[345] Tillerson's goal was to eventually remove sanctions on Russia so his old company, ExxonMobil, could reap a 500 billion dollar oil deal with the oligarchs, but now, he can't even do that, and he is spending his time destroying diplomacy because Trump thinks negotiations are bad and war is better (does anyone remember Trump's ghost-written autobiography, a "nonfiction work of fiction",[346] The Art of the Deal?). Skilled and patriotic diplomats are leaving like never before in an exodus that marginalizes America's diplomacy, once again in favor of the military.[347]

Deregulation[edit]

Trump signs an imperial decree executive order to advance construction on the Keystone pipeline

Trump made it his life's work to effectively rule by decree, using executive order after executive order to weaken, overturn, or just not enforce regulations that protect people's water, air, food, and general public health in addition to the piecemeal protections given to them from Wall Street and other corporations in the Obama era.[348]

His deregulation crusade is likely to be the single most successful in modern history, the effects of which will last for years after his reign ends.[349] It will largely benefit industries like the telecoms, fossil fuels, Wall Street big banks, and media monopolies among others.[350][351][352][353]

Among the 860 regulations he repealed by September 2017, many actively endanger the lives of American citizens. States no longer have limits on drug tests for those receiving unemployment benefits. Financial advisers will not have to act in the best interests of their clients. Employers no longer have to keep records of worker injuries, and the federal government will no longer publicize worker injuries. Government contractors no longer must disclose violations of labor laws. Judges no longer have discretion over handing out lenient criminal sentences. Private prisons will not be phased out. Law enforcement may seize assets of suspects not convicted of a crime.[citation needed]

Toxic waste dumps slated for cleanup will be ignored. More waterways will not have to meet federal environmental protection standards. Power plants have fewer restrictions on emissions of greenhouse gases. Regulations that require chemical companies to reveal what is in storage tanks (an issue in Hurricane Harvey) are disappearing. While Trump and his administration complain about wind farms killing birds,[354] the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) was quietly reinterpreted to make it so oil and gas, wind, and solar operators that accidentally kill birds will no longer be prosecuted.[355] Federal standards to make natural-disaster-ravaged infrastructure more resistant to flooding when rebuilt have been revoked. Money to let Americans know how and when to sign up for affordable health care is being slashed. Efforts to stabilize Obamacare to preserve insurance for millions are being ended.

Local police departments once again can have access to excess military equipment such as tanks, bayonets and grenade launchers. Oil and gas companies no longer have to report payments (bribes) to foreign governments. The number of people eligible for overtime pay has been greatly decreased.[citation needed]

More people will die in bed because mattresses will no longer have to be as fire-retardant as they are now. Construction site workers will be more likely to be run over by vehicles. Hundreds of endangered species will no longer be on the list for protection. New safety regulations on how meat and poultry are processed, in the works since 2001, will not be pursued. A requirement that federal contracts be issued only to firms that comply with 14 labor and civil rights laws, including equal pay for women, has been dropped. States may no longer create retirement savings plans for private-sector workers. Large companies no longer have to spell out what they pay men and what they pay women or what they pay whites and what they pay blacks, a rule that had been aimed at promoting pay equity. [356]

Wolf of Wall Street[edit]

Immediately after taking office, Trump issued an executive order removing the “fiduciary duty” rule, an Obama initiate that required retirement account professionals to manage their funds in their clients’ best interests. This allows retirement advisors to pick and choose investments based on the perks and money that the advisor gets for their corporation. He hiked up prices for mortgages, and appointed a guy to the SEC to revoke the power of the SEC’s enforcement division to issue subpoenas launching investigations.[357]

With Trump's blessing and eventual signing, Congress voted to strip workers of their ability to conduct class-action lawsuits against big banks and credit card companies.[358]

Destroying the safety net[edit]

He signed an executive order targeting recipients of Medicaid, food stamps and housing assistance by making those benefits contingent on work requirements, which would wipe out huge swaths of federal welfare. [359]

After giving 1 and a half trillion dollars to the rich in tax cuts, Trump canceled an Obama-era pay raise to federal workers.[360] Trump had previously said during his campaign that wages are "too high." [361]

Education[edit]

Betsy DeVos

Trump has chosen Betsy DeVos, heir-by-marriage to the Amway fortune, as Secretary of Education despite the fact she has no qualifications in education. Her own education was from private Christian schools. She favors a voucher system but similar systems to what she wants have failed. Students using the vouchers in private schools got worse results than public-school students.[362]

Currently, the name Betsy DeVos should be synonymous with being illiterate, a reputation she obtained during her senate confirmation hearing, where she demonstrated a failure to understand the difference between the word "Yes" and "No" when being asked whether she is a board member of her mother's anti-LGBTQ foundation.[363]

Some suggest picking someone whose literacy level is so easily outclassed by your average 4-year-old to be the Secretary of Education is a telling indicator of what the Trump Administration plans on doing to education.

Others claim that she is, in fact, *NOT* illiterate. Instead, she was *LYING*;[364] an allegation Ms. DeVos and her supporters have denied.

Shortly after passing her Senate confirmation, it was revealed that Ms. Devos appeared to have plagiarized her answers to a questionnaire as part of her confirmation. [365] In keeping with the Trump Klan's efforts to be as blatantly immoral and hypocritical as possible, at least one of her answers was lifted from an Obama administration official, Vanita Gupta. That makes her smart.

If Trump and DeVos continue as they seem to plan what could happen? People in advanced European nations and elsewhere could have reason to boast that their nations have better education than the Americans. Perhaps not the best way to "make America great again".Wikipedia's W.svg

Jerry Falwell, Jr. will head a task force on higher education.[366]

Under Trump, DeVos will revoke former President Obama's 2011 and 2014 guidelines for schools investigating campus sexual misconduct; legal scholars actually express support, albeit cautious, at this development.[367]

Foreign policy[edit]

Trump's attitude to nuclear weapons and to global warming have made the world a more dangerous place.[368]

He changed decades of American policy by announcing he will move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, thereby recognizing Jerusalem as the capitol of a single Israeli state. This immediately provoked armed conflict between Hamas in Gaza and Likud in Israel, causing dozens of deaths within the first day.[369] [370] [371] [372] Violence erupted on the streets of Beirut right in front of the US embassy shortly thereafter.[373]

Trump formally opened the Jerusalem embassy on May 14, 2018, and Palestinians who were either protesting the embassy or commemorating the 70 year anniversary of the Nakba were shot and killed by Israeli border soldiers. About 55 were killed, including an eight month old child, and over 2000 were injured. [374] As if to rub salt on the wound, Trump sent two anti-Semitic evangelical pastors to open the embassy at Jerusalem.[375]

Trump is not keeping the United States or the world safe from terrorism either.

By calling citizens of whole countries “potential terrorists”, the president has just confirmed the impression that a religion is being targeted as such. It is much more likely that its aim was to provoke an act of terror than to prevent one. If one takes place, the president will likely claim that he was right all along, and argue that repression of American residents and citizens are necessary.[376]

The Guardian reported in February 2017 that the immigration policies of the Trump administration had caused a slump for the American tourism industry.[377] However, there seems to be no real long-term effect, even in 2017, judging from the passenger volumes of America's largest international airports. Of the world's 20 busiest by passenger traffic, five are American: Hartsfield-Jackson (Atlanta), Los Angeles, O'Hare (Chicago), Dallas-Forth Worth, and Denver. All of them except Atlanta welcomed more people than they did in 2016.[378] In fact, the Airports Council International (ACI) noted a net increase in airport activity of all kinds globally, especially in major markets such as the United States.[379]

Afghanistan[edit]

Great nations do not fight endless wars.
—Donald Trump, 2019 State of the Union address.[380]

Trump has long called for an end to U.S. involvement in Afghanistan, home to America's longest war. As of 2019, the U.S. is negotiating a peace treaty with the Taliban, which it toppled as the Afghan government in 2001. However, the situation on the ground in deteriorating, with the Taliban expanding the areas under its control. By early 2019, the Taliban controls 70% of the country.[381]

Drone strikes[edit]

President Trump ordered his team to make it easier to launch drone strikes, and has since given more authority to the CIA to conduct drone strikes. This is in keeping with his campaign promise that "we have to take out their families," because he is removing all the Obama era guidelines that reduce civilian causalities, while also increasing the CIA's paramilitary capabilities.[382][383][384]

Columbia Law School Human Rights Clinic and the Sana’a Center for Strategic Studies found that since President Donald Trump took office, the monthly rate of U.S. drone strikes has increased by almost four times former President Barack Obama’s average.[385] All war zones now have an increase in drone and air strikes under Trump, threatening countless more civilian lives already.[386][387][388]

In eight months, Trump killed more civilians through drone strikes than Obama ever did in his entire eight year presidency. Under Obama, 2300-3400 people were killed in drone strikes, but under Trump, 2800-4500 civilians were killed by drone strikes. [389]

Iran[edit]

In May 2018, Trump withdraw the U.S. from the Iran nuclear deal. However, U.S. intelligence reports in 2019 confirm that Iran is complying with the deal, thereby posing less of a threat. Trump initially rebuffed the report, but later walked back his comments.[390]

Mexico[edit]

Trump has promised heavy tariffs on imports from Mexico to pay for the border wall that Mexico does not want. If this is done it may damage the economies of the United States and Mexico and American consumers will pay for the wall.[citation needed] Vicente Fox, the former President of Mexico said that his country will not pay for it.[391]

Unconfirmed reports suggest Trump threatened to invade Mexico.[citation needed] Both sides have denied the reports.[392]

North Korea[edit]

In a historic meeting, Donald Trump met with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore in June 2018 for talks on denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula and building "a stable and lasting peace." This was quite remarkable given that the two previously traded harsh words.[393] However, little progress was made and the two sides have agreed for a second summit. In the meantime, North Korea has improved its relations with neighboring China and South Korea[394] and has returned the remains of 55 U.S. troops killed in the Korean War, for which Trump thanked Kim.[395] In the wake of the historic summit, North Korean propaganda has taken a more conciliatory turn towards the U.S. and her regional allies. Anti-American posters are all but gone. Posters now promote peace scientific achievements, economic growth, and inter-Korean cooperation.[396]

Despite Trump's optimism, the U.S. intelligence community warned that North Korea is unlikely to halt its nuclear weapons program.[390]

In his 2019 State of the Union address, Trump announced that his second meeting with his North Korean counterpart will take place in Vietnam on the last days of February.[380] Vietnam and the United States are former foes who have improved ties in recent years and is seen as a model of political and economic reform for North Korea, with whom Vietnam maintains good relations. These are the reasons why the country was chosen to host the summit. President Trump specified the location to be the capital city, Hanoi.[397]

Syria[edit]

In mid-April, 2018, naval and air forces from the U.S., the U.K., and France conducted air and missile attacks against targets in Syria believed to be part of the Assad regime's chemical weapons program, after an alleged chemical attack by government forces on rebels. All targets were reportedly destroyed by precision-guided munitions.[398] In early 2019, Trump declared that ISIS had been crushed and ordered U.S. troops to withdraw completely from Syria.[399]

Health[edit]

Tom Price served as Trump's Secretary of Health and Human Services.[400] Price resigned after multiple scandals involving his use of private planes (paid for by you) and military aircraft for government-related travel.[401] Trump seems to be bedding down with the opponents of vaccination,[402] and has previously tweeted on the subject on multiple occasions.[403][404]

Organizations providing health care in the Third World that receive United States funding are forbidden from giving abortion advice regardless of how desperately a woman may need it.[405] Other Republican presidents also did this.

Family planning help will also be made more difficult which will likely increase legal and illegal abortions.[406] Trump took this further than other Republican presidents, extending the ban to all organizations that get US aid and even Bill Gates has expressed concern.[407] Many European nations are providing funds to plug the gap the United States left.[408]

During his election campaign, Trump said, "We're going to repeal and replace Obamacare, and it's going to be so easy." On 27 February 2017, having looked into the matter, he said, "Nobody knew health care could be so complicated."[409]

A new health bill was written which will likely leave an estimated 14 million now covered by Obamacare may to lose insurance, rising to 24 million later, and those would be mostly poor and elderly. The bill was yanked on 24 March 2017 when it became clear that the House would not pass it.[410][411] A similar bill proposed later failed to pass the Senate. [412] Trump has not been able to replace Obamacare with a viable alternative.

One of his latest moves is to draft a rule aimed at eliminating a federal rule requiring employers to cover contraception in their insurance plans for women at no additional costs. Under Obamacare, contraception is considered an essential preventative health service. Affordable birth control has not only saved women a substantial amount of money but also caused abortions rates to plummet to levels that are the lowest since the procedure became legal in 1973.[413][414]

But Trump still has the power of the executive, and used it to slash the advertising and promotional budget for the ACA by 90%. Enrollment programs meant to help people sign up also face a nearly 40% cut. This prevents any new sign-ups for the ACA and deprives millions of potential coverage since they could lose their jobs and thus become eligible for coverage under the ACA, but would never know they could sign up, leaving them to wither on the vine.[415]

Trump and the Republicans allowed CHIP, a Clinton-era insurance program for lower-income children, to expire, meaning within a year, if it is not renewed, 9 million children will lose their insurance and be left to die.[416]

On October 2017, he signed an executive order that removed Obamacare subsidies to the poor and lower class. [417] This threatens to blow up the entire ACA, and it's flung the healthcare market into a semi-panic. [418] Healthier people pay less while sicker people pay more, leading to less coverage overall. [419]

Trump used the IRS as a cudgel against the poor, by having them declare they will not accept electronic tax returns, and will suspend paper returns that do not disclose whether the filer had health insurance coverage during the year. The penalty for not having some form of health coverage in 2017 is the higher of 2.5 percent of household income or $695 per adult. [420]

Donald Trump is well aware of the fact that American patients are subsidizing the affordable healthcare enjoy by the citizens of many other countries, calling it "global freeloading". With this in mind, many Congressional representatives dared him to support their legislative proposal to cut prescription drug prices in the United States by (1) encouraging competition between generic drugs and brand-name drugs, (2) allowing Medicare to negotiate prices directly with pharmaceutical companies, and (3) enabling patients to import drugs from Canada, where prices are lower. Prices are deemed "excessive" if they are higher than the median in Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, France and Japan. There has been no immediate response from the White House.[421]

Nutrition[edit]

Regulations requiring schools to provide children with healthier food have been rolled back. Regulations requiring food manufacturers to to tell customers what is in the food they buy have also been rolled back.

This is where you really have to look at motives, you know. You have to stop and think: why don't you want our kids to have good food at school? What is wrong with you? … We need to look our neighbours in the eye and kind of go: 'What is going on?' Because this just isn’t that complicated, you know. Just tell me what's in my food. Why is that a problem? So you have to ask yourself, what’s going on, because I don’t get it. I don’t understand it.
Michelle Obama[422]

Cutting Medicaid[edit]

Trump's administration laid out a guideline that allows states to adopt work requirements for eligibility in Medicaid, which would purge at least several thousand people from coverage as they suffer through extreme poverty. Kentucky will immediately require people to fulfill at least 80 hours per month of work, job-preparation or other community engagement. In Indiana, the required hours will be phased in over 1½ years, eventually reaching 20 per week. [423]

Immigrants and refugees[edit]

President Obama issued the DACA ruling, an executive order preventing young immigrants from facing deportation. Like everything else Obama has done, Trump does hate it instinctually, and in spite of businesses pleading him to do the opposite, he ended DACA.[424] Dreamers trusted the government with their information so they could qualify for DACA; without it, the government under Trump will use DACA as a database for deportations.[425] [426]

Trump officials rejected a study by the Department of Health and Human Services saying refugees are good for the economy.[427]

Texas-based judges sympathetic to Trump allowed the state to crackdown on immigration by forcing all municipalities to comply with ICE's detainment policies, allowing police officers to check the immigration status of anyone they stop for any reason, and to even arrest local and state officials who refuse to comply.[428]

One particularly dark example of how important rhetoric can affect a country, Trump threatened to remove refugee protections for Haitian refugees. Terrified, the creole-speaking Haitian refugees went to Canada, causing a refugee crisis in Quebec just from a throwaway anti-migrant threat from the President. Anti-refugee sentiment has grown in Quebec almost immediately.[429]

In January 8, 2018, Trump stripped over 200,000 El Salvadorian immigrants of their legal protections and deported them back to a country ravaged by a drug war that's killed thousands. These were all home-owning, taxpaying members of society for nearly twenty years. [430][431][432]

In February 2018, the Supreme Court ruled that the White House (read: Trump administration) has the power to detain immigrants, including legal immigrants, indefinitely without a hearing.[433]

Part campaign stunt to influence the November 2018 election[434] and part lowering the bar of reprehensible behavior, Trump decided to authorize tear gassing refugees at the US border with Mexico, including young children in diapers. This was apparently humane treatment by Trumpian standards because Trump also authorized the use of lethal force by border guards if they in any way felt threatened.[435][436][437]

Stripping people of their citizenship[edit]

Trump's administration laid out a plan for Americans to identify all people who are suspected of "cheating" the naturalization process and strip them of their citizenship. [438] Buoyed by Stephen Miller, the Trump administration is now considering barring immigrants living legally in the U.S. from receiving green cards/citizenship if anyone in their household, including native-born children with US citizenship, has ever used Obamacare, CHIP, food stamps or any other welfare program.[439]

By late August 2018, the Trump administration began denying passports to American citizens, namely those with Hispanic heritage, at the Mexican border, simply because the Justice Department "does not believe" they are citizens despite evidence pointing otherwise. This is a callback to Trump's own birtherism regarding President Obama, and now he's accusing any Latino American near the border of using fraudulent birth certificates since they were babies. In some cases, "passport applicants with official U.S. birth certificates" are "being jailed in immigration detention centers" and "entered into deportation proceedings." In others, "they are stuck in Mexico, their passports suddenly revoked when they tried to reenter the United States."[440]

It should be noted that this policy actually began during the George W. Bush administration and continued through the Obama administration.[440] The policy was initiated due to a series of court cases where some Texas midwives admitted to fraudulently selling birth certificates,[441] but the extent of this practice was never clarified.[440] A 2009 lawsuit by the ACLU mostly put a stop to the practice of this type of citizenship denial during the Obama administration.[440][442] but the Trump administration seems to have greatly increased the denials,[440] possibly in violation of the State Department's agreement with the ACLU. Trump, essentially, is ignoring judicial precedent so he could put his old birtherism into policy. [443]

So how far has Trump taken it? People who have birth certificates showing they were born in the United States are being actively targeted. “Hundreds, even thousands” of Latinos born near the US-Mexico border are being told that their birth certificates aren’t sufficient proof of US citizenship to get their passports approved or renewed. [444]

This started influencing even the halls of Wall Street. Bank of America began freezing accounts of customers they suspect are not US citizens. [445]

Infrastructure[edit]

Preparations were already made for the Gateway Program in Hudson Yards, Manhattan.

Shortly after taking office in 2017, Donald Trump unveiled an infrastructure plan worth a trillion dollars. However, he also proposed a $2.4 billion cut to federal transportation programs. This plan would eliminate subsidies for long-distance trains and commercial flights to rural communities with limited transportation options, including those that helped Trump win the presidency. He wanted to relieve the Federal Aviation Administration of air traffic control, turning it into a private nonprofit corporation instead. Trump sought to eliminate the Obama-era Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program. Favored by both Republicans and Democrats, it provided funding for various infrastructure program, including public transit.[446]

The Gateway Project is a plan to modernize railroad infrastructure between New York and New Jersey and to double the number of trains passing between those two states. This plan includes repairs to the old North River Tunnel, and the construction of the new Hudson Tunnel.[447] Existing tunnels between New Jersey and New York are over a century old and were seriously damaged by Hurricane Sandy in 2012. They are currently operating at full capacity, as are the bus terminals. They are used by both Amtrak (intercity rail) and NJ Transit (regional rapid transit). If these tunnels were not thoroughly repaired and a new tunnel were not built on time, the number of trains crossing the Hudson River during rush hours could drop from 24 to just six, with dire consequences for the regional economy.[448] In fact, the Northeast Corridor is the most heavily traveled railway in the nation.[449] The Obama administration tried to fund the project, but ran out of time. Under the Obama plan, the federal government would provide 50% of the funding, and the rest would come from the state governments of New York and New Jersey. They failed to raise enough money.[448] Although he was initially in favor of the Gateway Project, Trump later turned against it and urged fellow Republicans to cut funding for it. It appears Trump wanted to use this crucial infrastructure project as a bargaining chip with Democrats.[450]

In 2018, the Trump administration rolled out an infrastructure plan that allocates one quarter of the money available to rural areas, even though only 14% of Americans live outside of the metropolitan areas. This spells trouble for numerous large-scale urban projects, such as the Gateway Project mentioned above, and the California High-speed Rail, whose construction is ongoing. It also undermines aging transit networks in large established cities such as Chicago or New York City, which need significant funds for repairs, maintenance, and modernization, because it favors new construction.[note 1] Another key aspect of this policy is that it relegates primary funding responsibility to local authorities and the private sector. Trump's aim with this funding policy is to realize his promise during the 2016 presidential campaign to bring jobs to rural areas, where employment prospects have been dim, and to transfer wealth from states that tend to vote Democrat to those that helped him win the election.[451]

Federal funding for smaller projects, such as $900 million for Maryland's Purple Line, which costs about $2.4 billion, was approved.[452] However, Trump's highly ambitious infrastructure spending plan was pretty much dead in the water, facing fierce opposition from Democrats who took issue with the fact that Trump preferred private funding and highways to federal funding and public transit. Of the projected $1.5 trillion, the federal government would spend only $200 billion.[453] In fact in 2018, up to $1.4 billion in funding for transit projects across the country—bus rapid transit, light rail, streetcars, and heavy rail—was withheld, although cities were already putting local resources towards construction and only needed federal funding to continue. Some cities, such as Seattle, had already obtained federal funding approval. It is evident that the Trump administration has no liking of public transportation.[454] Funding was not released till late November 2018 for five projects that had previously been approved.[455]

Under the Obama administration, funding for transit on one hand and for highways and bridges on the other hand were roughly equal. Under the Trump administration, some 70% of the funding would go to highways and bridges and only about 11% to transit.[456]

Notably, a number of large infrastructure projects remain prioritized. In order to qualify, a project must enhance national security, improve public safety, have 30% of its design complete, and be ready for construction.[457] One is the Texas Central Railway, which connects Houston to Dallas and cuts travel time from four and a half hours to just 90 minutes.[457] Texas Central is a private railroad company.[458] Another is the New York City Second Avenue Subway, whose Phase I was completed in time for New Year's Eve, 2017.[459] Phase II is underway.[460] There are four phases total. When completed, the Second Avenue Subway would be 13.7 km (8.6 mi) long with 16 stations and a projected daily ridership of 560,000.[457]

In October 2018, Trump signed into the America's Water Infrastructure Act of 2018. It authorizes the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to manage water resource projects and policies nationwide. It also authorizes federal funding for various water infrastructure projects, including the expansion of water storage capabilities, and upgrades to wastewater, drinking and irrigation systems.[461]

...it is the policy of the executive branch to maximize, consistent with law, the use of goods, products, and materials produced in the United States, in Federal procurements and through the terms and conditions of Federal financial assistance awards..

—Donald Trump's executive order.[462]

In his 2019 State of the Union address, Trump once again called for investments in infrastructure, but offered very few specifics. According to Representative Peter DeFazio, chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, the United States needs to spend at least $2 trillion on its infrastructure, including 140,000 bridges and 40% of highways that are in a state of poor repair.[463] Unfortunately, his vision lacks political momentum because while there is bipartisan agreement that American infrastructure needs to be upgraded, Congress is divided on how to pay for it.[464] In late January 2019, Trump issued an executive order urging government agencies to purchase American-made construction materials for their infrastructure projects, especially those that require federal financial assistance.[462] This follows his 2017 "Buy American, Hire American" executive order restricting the hiring of foreign workers and tightened standards for federal acquisitions. Canadian officials are seeking an exemption for their country.[465]

National Security[edit]

Monica Crowley who had a national security communications role under Trump has been accused of serial plagiarism.[466] and resigned.[467]

Michael Flynn resigned as security adviser and is considered a security risk.[468]

Trump suggested without evidence that Obama had ordered surveillance of Trump Tower. As the story lost credibility Trump claimed, again without evidence, that British intelligence was behind the imaginary surveillance. Trump has alienated an ally and damaged United States credibility.[469]

Net neutrality[edit]

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, the deciding vote in the 2017 net neutrality repeal
See the main article on this topic: Net neutrality

He appointed Ajit Pai, an ardent ideological opponent of net neutrality, to be the chairman of the FCC. As Chairman, Pai has steadily taken steps towards removing all of the gains taken by his predecessor, Tom Wheeler, in anticipation of weakening and finally abolishing net neutrality. This includes halting broadband subsidies to the poor, delaying enactment of privacy laws, ending investigations on regulations violations, and allowing ISPs to bypass current net neutrality rules.[470] Pai is accomplishing this by utilizing "delegated authority," a pseudo-executive claim of power to "act without public input, hearings, or votes by the full commission" to enact his anti-net neutrality agenda. In one case, they killed the FCC’s guidance to broadcasters on “shared service” agreements, allowing media companies to operate two or more stations in markets where there is supposed to be competition. In a second case, Pai pulled the FCC’s set-top-box proceeding, which would have brought competition to the cable market by enabling independent manufacturers to sell the set-top boxes that otherwise are provided by cable companies. This allowance of "cross-ownership" threatens to pave the way for ISPs to merge into even larger monopolies than ever before, effectively privatizing internet service, let alone the viewing of content within the internet. Pai also withdrew a requirement that helped the FCC monitor the diversity of media ownership, and he rescinded orders that made it easier for the FCC to sanction broadcasters that violate the agency’s political-advertising disclosure rules. [471]

The FCC approved a plan to deregulate the $45 billion market for business-to-business broadband, the Business Data Services (BDS), by "eliminating price caps that make internet access more affordable for thousands of small businesses, schools, libraries and hospitals." The price caps, "which have been in place for years, are designed to protect small businesses and other community institutions from predatory behavior by monopoly broadband providers like AT&T and Verizon."[472]

Facilitating propaganda[edit]

If you want an idea of what happens without net neutrality, look at Sinclair Broadcast Group. Trump's FCC allowed Sinclair to expand its reach to 72% of all US households, especially in the Rust Belt and Deep South. Critics have called Sinclair a TV version of Breitbart. This is cable, a fate that will befall the internet without net neutrality.[473][474]

Repeal[edit]

The FCC voted 3-2 to repeal net neutrality, block states from passing net neutrality, allow ISPs to slow down sites they don't like for a fee, and prevent a future FCC from restoring net neutrality. Elections have consequences. [475]

Research[edit]

PZ Myers fears Trump plans to end the United States' role as a major researching nation. American scientists, along with others across the world, held protest marches against Trump cutting research funding.[476] Budget cuts are harming universities and harming science.[477]

Under Trump, scientific data must be vetted by politicians before publication. It is feared inconvenient scientific data, notably data showing global warming is real, may be suppressed. This applies as of late January and early February 2017 but the future is unclear.[478]

Response to midterm results[edit]

Democrats made major gains in the 2018 midterm elections, winning at least 40 net seats in the House of Representatives (the most for the party since 1974) and seven governorships. The results in the Senate were better for the GOP, which managed to net two seats, but only because Democrats were defending the vast majority of seats up for election (including several in deep red states like North Dakota and Missouri). While there is some debate about exactly why the Democrats did so well in 2018, there’s little question that Trump’s unpopular policies and abrasive, bigoted behavior contributed to Republican losses.[479]

Obama, Clinton, Reagan, and other previous presidents who suffered midterm defeats responded by adopting a more bipartisan tone and appealing to voters across the aisle.[480] Trump, on the other hand, has reacted by doubling down on his ridiculous policy demands, bizarre and bigoted comments, and authoritarian threats. Since the midterms, he has:

  • Shut down the Federal government over his wall for 35 days, the longest shutdown in U.S. history.[481]
  • Declared a national emergency in an attempt to unilaterally build the aforementioned border wall using funds from the military and other executive agencies.[482]
  • Announced that if House Democrats try to investigate him, he will make the Senate investigate Democrats right back, a threat that does not make him look guilty in any way, shape, or form[483]
  • Threatened to cut off FEMA funds to California unless the state “gets their act together” on controlling forest fires, a threat that suggests Trump understands neither the effects of climate change nor how Federal lands are managed[484]

It should be noted that there are several competitive Senate seats to defend in 2020.[485]

External links[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. This does not mean such cities have no need or plans for transit expansions.

References[edit]

  1. I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration: I work for the president but like-minded colleagues and I have vowed to thwart parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations. (Sept. 5, 2018) The New York Times.
  2. McCain savages Trump administration and inability to 'separate truth from lies'
  3. https://newrepublic.com/article/144646/trump-already-wall-its-thin-blue-line
  4. https://www.thecipherbrief.com/trump-rhetoric-empowers-dangerous-fringe-violence
  5. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trump-police-brutality_us_597b840fe4b02a8434b6575a
  6. http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/29/politics/trump-police-remarks-reaction/index.html
  7. "Violent Proto-Fascists Came To Portland. The Police Went After The Anti-Fascists," Christopher Mathias and Andy Campbell, Huffington Post
  8. https://fundrazr.com/j20resistance?ref=ab_417QGVH9gq5417QGVH9gq5
  9. http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/08/police-tear-gas-protesters-after-trumps-phoenix-rally.html
  10. https://www.democracynow.org/2017/6/23/headlines/aclu_lawsuit_claims_dc_police_sexually_abused_anti_trump_protesters
  11. http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2017/06/aclu-sues-dc-police-violence-anti-trump-rally-170624084053335.html
  12. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wfTZgPMQX-0
  13. http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/forcibly-arrested-st-louis-protesting-50045432
  14. http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/mass-arrests-made-after-protesters-briefly-close-highway-in-st/article_be681e7d-db87-5754-8799-12406397ccb0.html
  15. https://www.propublica.org/article/white-hate-group-campaign-of-menace-rise-above-movement?utm_campaign=sprout&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_content=1508539264
  16. http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/trump-violent-rhetoric-history-226873
  17. http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2017/jul/05/sarah-huckabee-sanders/has-donald-trump-never-promoted-or-encouraged-viol/
  18. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/07/28/president-trump-encourages-violence-yet-again-this-time-by-police/?utm_term=.29193409d7a5
  19. http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/back-trump-comments-perceived-encouraging-violence/story?id=48415766
  20. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2016/03/is_donald_trump_inciting_violence_he_might_be.html
  21. http://www.theroot.com/trump-supporter-says-those-suing-the-president-for-inci-1794365380
  22. http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/another-trump-supporter-blames-him-inciting-violence-rally
  23. http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/03/02/a_list_of_violent_incidents_at_donald_trump_rallies_and_events.html
  24. http://www.politico.com/story/2017/04/trump-inciting-violence-protest-rally-lawsuit-237249
  25. https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2017/7/30/16060030/trump-dehumanizing-language-latinos
  26. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/nov/02/new-york-attack-suspect-death-penalty-trump
  27. http://mashable.com/2016/03/12/trump-rally-incite-violence/#R18xh730Kiq3
  28. https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/03/the-violence-to-come/471924/
  29. https://www.theatlantic.com/notes/2017/07/trump-li-police/535320/
  30. http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/corey-lewandowski-says-he-wont-apologize-michelle-fields
  31. http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/02/29/secret_service_agent_violently_slams_photographer_to_the_ground_virginia.html
  32. http://mashable.com/2016/02/29/trump-photographer-choke-slam/#WekwDQUKPsqP
  33. http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/media-fear-trump-will-inspire-violence-against-reporters/article/2632488
  34. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/05/25/fox-news-crew-watched-in-disbelief-as-gianforte-slammed-and-punched-reporter/?utm_term=.f514e2ca632b
  35. http://www.tmz.com/2017/05/24/montana-politician-greg-gianforte-body-slam-guardian-reporter/
  36. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/karl-oliver-confederate-lynch_us_59224866e4b094cdba54eece
  37. http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/the-administration/344627-trump-abuses-power-in-using-public-funds-for-private
  38. https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/10/31/16579204/trump-finances-mueller
  39. http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/whitefish-puerto-rico-utility-contract
  40. https://www.cnbc.com/2017/09/19/trump-using-campaign-rnc-funds-to-pay-russia-probe-legal-bills-reuters-citing-sources.html
  41. http://www.commercialappeal.com/story/opinion/contributors/2017/09/05/trumps-pardon-sanctions-racist-abuse-power/619887001/
  42. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/07/donald_trump_could_be_prosecuted_for_abusing_his_pardon_power.html
  43. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/top-intelligence-official-told-associates-trump-asked-him-if-he-could-intervene-with-comey-to-get-fbi-to-back-off-flynn/2017/06/06/cc879f14-4ace-11e7-9669-250d0b15f83b_story.html?utm_term=.3befe3758fdb
  44. https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/08/donald-trump-conflicts-of-interests/508382/
  45. http://www.newsweek.com/trump-familys-endless-conflicts-interest-chapter-and-verse-631216
  46. https://sunlightfoundation.com/tracking-trumps-conflicts-of-interest/
  47. https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/security/news/2017/06/14/434171/trumps-conflicts-interest/
  48. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trumps-abuse-of-power_us_5978c1d9e4b01cf1c4bb74cc
  49. http://www.glamour.com/story/the-trump-administration-is-making-it-easier-for-puppy-mills-to-hide-animal-abuse
  50. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2017/02/usda-animal-welfare-puppy-mills-trump-humane-society
  51. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/02/wildlife-watch-usda-animal-welfare-trump-records/
  52. Why is Jeff Sessions quoting Romans 13 and why is the bible verse so often invoked? Emily McFarlan Miller and Yonat Shimron, Religion News Service 06.16.18
  53. From the gold palace to the jobs for his children, Donald Trump is shaping up to be a classic autocrat
  54. https://www.thedailybeast.com/reporter-covering-inauguration-protests-now-faces-75-years-in-prison
  55. http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2017/06/reporters-face-70-years-prison-anti-trump-march-170615083432300.html
  56. https://www.salon.com/2017/06/02/in-an-unprecedented-court-escalation-trump-protesters-could-be-facing-decades-in-prison-for-inauguration-demonstrations_partner/
  57. http://fair.org/home/corporate-media-analysts-indifference-to-us-journalists-facing-70-years-in-prison/
  58. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/03/donald-trump-banned-publications
  59. http://money.cnn.com/2016/06/14/media/donald-trump-media-blacklist/
  60. http://www.politico.com/blogs/on-media/2015/11/trumps-team-tangles-with-the-press-again-216087
  61. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/donald-trump-media_us_579a225ee4b02d5d5ed4a1cb
  62. http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2016/03/breitbart-reporter-files-charges-against-trumps-campaign-manager
  63. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/25/opinion/trump-is-damaging-press-freedom-in-the-us-and-abroad.html
  64. https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2017/05/16/i-was-arrested-for-asking-tom-price-a-question-i-was-just-doing-my-job/?utm_term=.743f331afbeb&utm_source=huffingtonpost.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=pubexchange_article
  65. https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/5/2/15518574/desiree-fairooz-justice-department
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  85. "NC GOP leader raises possibility of impeaching justices over amendment ruling," Lynn Bonner, NewsObserver
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  87. "Explosive device sent to CNN featured parody ISIS flag, 'Get 'Er Done' inscription," Ben Collins, NBC News
  88. "What the bombs mailed to the Clintons, Obamas and CNN could tell us about their maker," Darran Simon, CNN
  89. "Trump claims media to blame for 'anger' after bombs sent to CNN, Dems," Veronica Stracqualursi and Liz Stark, CNN
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  92. "Pipe Bombs Sent to Biden and Robert De Niro, Latest in Wave of Explosives Sent to Trump Critics," William K. Rashbaum, Alan Feuer and Richard Pérez-Peña, New York Times
  93. "Bombs sent to CNN, prominent Democrats at time of political division," PBS
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  143. Jeff Sessions Russian Ambassador Meetings
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  145. Acting Attorney General Sat on Board of Company Accused of Bilking Customers. The New York Times. November 8, 2018.
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  147. Former Attorney General Says Whitaker Appointment 'Confounds Me'. NPR. November 10, 2018.
  148. Future seems uncertain for Trump's acting attorney general. The Associated Press. November 10, 2018.
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  154. Trump resists Mueller interview, leaving difficult decision on subpoena before fall elections. Los Angeles Times. July 15th, 2018.
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  201. "Child Dead After ICE Detention Center Stay Due To Negligent Care," Pritha Paul, International Business Times.
  202. "Pregnant women in ICE custody claim they miscarried due to ‘inhumane’ practices," NYPost.
  203. Drinking Toilet Water, Widespread Abuse: Report Details ‘Torture’ For Child Detainees, Huffington Post.
  204. "Trump administration to circumvent court limits on detention of child migrants," Washington Post.
  205. "The Trump Administration Plans To Detain More Children And For Longer," Angelina Chapin, Huffington Post
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  207. "BREAKING: Trump administration says it will sidestep court agreement that limited detention for immigrant children," Associated Press.
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  209. "Despite Trump's promise to protect them, Christian refugees struggle to enter U.S.," Dan De Luce and Julia Ainsley, NBCNews
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  211. US Wildlife Refuges End Ban On Neonics and GM Crops. BBC News. August 4, 2018.
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  244. "Hurricane's death toll in Puerto Rico put at nearly 3,000," Danica Coto, Associated Press and Yahoo
  245. "FEMA's budget cut by $10 million to support ICE, documents show," Christal Hayes, USA Today
  246. "Rachel Maddow reports Trump administration took $10 million from FEMA to fund immigrant detention and deportation," MediaMatters
  247. Direct link to his twitter
  248. "Trump tried to withhold federal disaster funds earmarked for Puerto Rico" - Vox
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  258. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/25/us/politics/some-agencies-told-to-halt-communications-as-trump-administration-moves-in.html
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  260. http://www.ucsusa.org/news/press-release/EPA-USDA-scientific-integrity
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  262. Four Republicans propose a bill to abolish the Environmental Protection Agency
  263. http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/358640-epa-names-industry-state-officials-to-advisory-boards
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  278. "Cost of New E.P.A. Coal Rules: Up to 1,400 More Deaths a Year," Lisa Friedman, New York Times
  279. EPA rolls back Obama-era coal pollution rules as Trump heads to West Virginia. CNN. August 21, 2018.
  280. Russia Wants Innovation, but It's Arresting Its Innovators The New York Times
  281. http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2017/09/trumps-job-killing-plan-to-kneecap-the-solar-industry/
  282. Billions in U.S. solar projects shelved after Trump panel tariff. Reuters. June 7th, 2018.
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  288. Trump claims torture works but experts warn of its 'potentially existential' costs
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  302. https://www.thenation.com/article/the-department-of-justice-is-overseeing-the-resegregation-of-american-schools/
  303. http://www.politico.com/story/2017/10/06/sessions-calls-for-broad-religious-freedom-protections-243536
  304. http://www.vox.com/2017/1/28/14425566/trump-refugee-immigrant-muslim-ban-illustrated
  305. "Trump's executive order on refugees closes America to those who need it most". 2017-01-27. http://www.vox.com/2017/1/27/14370854/trump-refugee-ban-order-muslim. "Trump signed an executive order Friday afternoon that bans all immigrants and visa holders from seven majority-Muslim countries from entering the US for 90 days [...]. It slashes the US's refugee quota for 2017 to less than half of the level set by President Obama, directs the US to prioritize 'religious minorities' for the remaining slots […]." 
  306. https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2017/10/white-house-wont-let-pride-flag-fly-federal-land-national-coming-day/
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  318. Trump funding cuts would imperil tens of thousands of women, activists warn
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  320. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/23/health/trump-teen-pregnancy-abstinence.html
  321. "Amid 'Epidemic' of Campus Sexual Assault, Women's Groups Decry Rollback of Protections by 'See No Evil Betsy Devos'," Common Dreams
  322. ‘A recipe for scandal’: Trump conflicts of interest point to constitutional crisis by Julian Borger (27 November 2016 04.00 EST) The Guardian.
  323. Trump role for son-in-law Jared Kushner needs review, Democrats say
  324. Kushner Omitted Meeting With Russians on Security Clearance Forms by Jo Becerk & Matthew Rosenberg (April 6, 2017) The New York Times.
  325. Jared Kushner 'lying about his contacts with Russia,' says Watergate prosecutor: 'These are just lies, they are not believable,' says Jill Wine-Banks by Emily Shugerman (July 2017 22:50 BST) The Independent.
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  346. Donald Trump’s Ghostwriter Tells All: "The Art of the Deal" made America see Trump as a charmer with an unfailing knack for business. Tony Schwartz helped create that myth—and regrets it. by Jane Mayer (July 25, 2016) The New Yorker.
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  354. Warland, J. (March 6, 2018). Trump's Interior Secretary Claimed Wind Power Leads to Global Warming. His Numbers Are Wrong. Time. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
  355. Eilperin, J. (December 26, 2017) Trump administration eases rule against killing birds. Washington Post. Retrieved March 1, 2018.
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  359. http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/383106-trump-order-targets-wide-swathe-of-public-assistance-programs
  360. "After $1.5 Trillion Tax Giveaway to the Rich, Trump Cancels Modest Pay Raise for Federal Workers," Jake Johnson, Common Dreams
  361. "Donald Trump doubles down: Wages too high," Colin Campbell, Business Insider
  362. Goodbye American Education
  363. http://www.nbcnews.com/video/betsy-devos-answers-questions-about-her-mother-s-non-profit-foundation-857904707695
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  365. http://edition.cnn.com/2017/01/31/politics/betsy-devos-plagiarism-obama-official/index.html
  366. At Donald Trump’s Request, Jerry Falwell, Jr. Will Lead a Federal Task Force on Higher-Ed Policy
  367. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/devos-to-rescind-obama-era-title-ix-order-on-withholding-school-funds-for-assault-inaction/
  368. Donald Trump’s Actions Push “Doomsday Clock” Closer to Midnight
  369. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/israel-gaza-air-strike-latest-jerusalem-protests-trump-injured-news-updates-a8100311.html
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  376. Donald Trump acts like he wants regime change – in the United States
  377. US tourism experiences a 'Trump slump'
  378. The world's 20 busiest airports (2017). USA Today. April 9, 2018. Accessed February 2019.
  379. ACI reveals the world's busiest passenger and cargo airports. Airports World (the Magazine of the Airports Council International). Updated April 9, 2018. Accessed February 9, 2019.
  380. 380.0 380.1 State of the Union: Trump announces second North Korea summit. BBC News. February 6, 2019. Accessed February 6, 2019.
  381. Facing U.S. withdrawal, Afghan leader pitches Trump cost savings. CBS News. February 1, 2019. Accessed February 1, 2019.
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  390. 390.0 390.1 In reversal, Trump says he and intel chiefs on 'same page'. Associated Press. January 31, 2019. Accessed February 1, 2019.
  391. Another Message for Donald Trump from Former Mexican President Vicente Fox (Jun 7, 2017) YouTube.
  392. Mexican government says Donald Trump did not threaten to send troops to Mexico
  393. Trump Kim summit: US and North Korean leaders hold historic talks. BBC News. June 12, 2018. Accessed February 1, 2019.
  394. Trump-Kim summit: Second meeting by end of February. BBC News. January 18, 2019. Accessed February 1, 2019.
  395. Trump thanks Kim Jong-un for returning US troops' remains. July 27, 2018. Accessed February 1, 2019.
  396. North Korean propaganda changes its tune. BBC News. June 23, 2019. Accessed February 1, 2019.
  397. North Korea nuclear talks: Hanoi to host Trump summit with Kim. BBC News. February 9, 2019. Accessed February 9, 2019.
  398. US-led strikes on Syria: What was hit? BBC News. April 16, 2018. Accessed February 1, 2019.
  399. Graham in Turkey after criticizing Trump's Syria withdrawal plans. CBS News. January 18, 2019. Accessed February 1, 2019.
  400. Donald Trump's Pick for Health And Human Services Secretary Belongs to a Sham Medical Organization
  401. Price resigns from HHS after facing fire for travel Diamond, Dan et. al. Politico. 09/29/2017
  402. Trump claims vaccines and autism are linked but his own experts vehemently disagree Buncombe, Andrew. The Independent. 05.05.18
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  405. Kenyan Clinic Rejects Trump Abortion Policy, Loses $2 Million In U.S. Aid Ingber, Sasha. NPR. MAY.02.18
  406. 'Global gag rule' reinstated by Trump, curbing NGO abortion services abroad. The Guardian. January 23rd, 2017.
  407. Trump's 'global gag' aid rule endangers millions of women and children, Bill Gates warns
  408. Dutch minister calls on UK to join safe abortion fund after Trump ban. The Guardian. February 24th, 2018.
  409. CNN, updated February 28th, 2017.
  410. Trump healthcare plan 'will strip insurance from 14 million'
  411. The Republicans Fold on Health CareThe Atlantic 24 March 2017, by Russell Berman.
  412. Health Care Overhaul Collapses as Two Republican Senators Defect New York Times 17 July 2017, by Thomas Kaplan
  413. Trump Administration Moves To Roll Back Birth Control Coverage. The Huffington Post. Updated 05/30/2017.
  414. How much could Trump undo Obamacare’s birth control mandate? Vox. May 30th, 2017
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  421. Liberals dare Trump to back their bills lowering drug prices. Associated Press. January 10, 2019.
  422. 'What is wrong with you?' Michelle Obama savages Trump's gutting of her legacy
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  434. Administration Admits Border Deployment Was a $200 Million Election Stunt: The military is leaving the southern border, and the caravan hasn’t even arrived yet. by Bess Levin (November 19, 2018 6:40 pm) Vanity Fair.
  435. Trump loves kids. So his border guards are firing tear gas at them by Dana Milbank (November 27, 2018) The Washington Post.
  436. Photo of Children Fleeing Tear Gas at Border in Mexico Sparks Anger by Niraj Chokshi (Nov. 26, 2018) The New York Times.
  437. A mother and her girls tried to reach the US border. Then they got tear-gassed by Holly Yan (9:36 AM ET, Tue November 27, 2018) CNN.
  438. https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/06/trump-administration-launches-denaturalization-effort-to-strip-citizenship-from-those-suspected-of-irregularities.html
  439. "Now the Trump administration wants to limit citizenship for legal immigrants," Julia Ainsley, NBC News
  440. 440.0 440.1 440.2 440.3 440.4 U.S. denying passports to American citizens along Mexico border by Kevin Sieff (August 29 at 4:25 PM) The Washington Post.
  441. Midwife Pleads Guilty in Birth Certificate Scam by Pauline Arrillaga (Jun. 13, 1996) AP.
  442. State Department Agrees To Fair Issuance Of Passports To Mexican Americans (June 26, 2009) ACLU.
  443. "Trump Administration Denying Passports, Accusing Latino Citizens of Having Fake Birth Certificates," Julia Conley
  444. "Trump’s stripping of passports from some Texas Latinos, explained," Dara Lind, Vox
  445. "Bank of America freezing accounts of customers suspected of not being US citizens," Rob Wile, Sacramento Bee.
  446. Trump proposes deep transportation cuts in rural regions that supported him. McClathcy DC Bureau. March 16, 2017. Accessed February 14, 2019.
  447. The Gateway Program. Amtrak Northeast Corridor. Accessed February 11, 2019.
  448. 448.0 448.1 Obama Administration Urges Fast Action on New Hudson River Rail Tunnels. The New York Times. May 7, 2015. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  449. REQUEST FOR INFORMATION FOR HUDSON TUNNEL PROJECT. Amtrak Northeast Corridor. August 10, 2017. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  450. Trump pushes Republicans to oppose crucial New York-New Jersey tunnel project. The Washington Post. March 2, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  451. Trump takes aim at blue states in infrastructure plan. Politico. February 12, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  452. Trump administration kills Gateway tunnel deal. Crain's New York. December 28, 2017. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  453. Trump's infrastructure plan hits a dead end. The Hill. May 17, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  454. The $1.4 Billion Transit Fund the U.S. Government Won’t Release. CityLab. August 15, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  455. Trump Finally Releasing Transit Cash. November 29, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  456. Trump Turns Obama-Era Program into a Road Fund. Streetblog USA. December 12, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  457. 457.0 457.1 457.2 Trump makes $137bn list of “emergency” infrastructure schemes, all needing private finance. Global Construction Review. January 30, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  458. Learn the Facts. Texas Central.
  459. Second Avenue subway a priority for Trump, Rep. Maloney says. am New York. Updated January 26, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  460. Milestone reached in Second Avenue subway project. Crain's New York. November 19, 2018. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  461. [1]. CNN. October 23, 2018. Accessed February 14, 2019.
  462. 462.0 462.1 Donald J. Trump. Executive Order on Strengthening Buy-American Preferences for Infrastructure Projects. Issued January 31, 2019.
  463. Trump calls again on Congress to act on aging infrastructure needs. Reuters. February 5, 2019. Accessed February 10, 2019.
  464. Lawmakers say Trump’s infrastructure vision lacks political momentum. The Hill. February 6, 2019. Accessed February 11, 2019.
  465. Trump orders agencies to buy U.S.-made steel, aluminum and cement 'to the greatest extent' possible. Financial Post. February 7, 2019. Accessed February 11, 2019.
  466. Trump national security aide Monica Crowley plagiarized lines in Washington Times columns
  467. Monica Crowley, accused plagiarist, quits position with Trump administration
  468. Michael Flynn: Trump's national security adviser resigns
  469. White House-GCHQ row reveals a leader willing to alienate allies to save face
  470. http://www.recode.net/2017/3/3/14797306/trump-fcc-undo-network-neutrality
  471. https://www.thenation.com/article/trumps-net-neutrality-hating-fcc-chair-is-already-gutting-public-interest-regulations/
  472. https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/trumps-fcc-to-vote-to-allow-broadband-rate-hikes-for-schools-and-libraries?utm_source=mbtwitter
  473. http://www.salon.com/2017/08/07/fcc-exploits-loophole-to-push-massive-expansion-of-pro-trump-sinclair-broadcasting/
  474. http://www.politico.com/story/2017/08/06/trump-fcc-sinclair-broadcast-expansion-241337
  475. https://www.recode.net/2017/12/14/16771910/trump-fcc-ajit-pai-net-neutrality-repeal
  476. The imminent destruction of American science
  477. Trump’s budget cuts in science
  478. Trump administration demands pre-publication political review of scientific findings by the EPA
  479. https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/yes-it-was-a-blue-wave/
  480. https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/trumps-base-isnt-enough/
  481. https://www.thedailybeast.com/trump-i-will-shut-down-government-over-border-security
  482. https://www.npr.org/2019/02/15/695012728/trump-expected-to-declare-national-emergency-to-help-fund-southern-border-wall
  483. https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/415459-trump-warns-dems-over-potential-white-house-investigations-two-can
  484. https://www.politico.com/story/2019/01/09/trump-treatens-fema-funds-california-1090253
  485. http://crystalball.centerforpolitics.org/crystalball/2020-senate/