President Donald J. Trump, candidate for re-election
President of the United States
- Donald J. Trump, President, United States of America, 2017-present
- born June 14, 1946, New York, NY
- attended Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (B.S. economics) 1966-1968
- real-estate developer and TV personality
President Trump on impeachment:
“This Impeachment nonsense is just a continuation of the Witch Hunt Hoax, which has been going on since before I even got elected. Rupublicans [sic], go with Substance and close it out!” Source: Twitter, https://bipartisanreport.com/2019/10/30/trump-goes-on-am-twitter-tirade-misspelling-multiple-words/
- Make America Great Again
- Promises Made, Promises Kept
Trump’s main health-care policy is to fulfill his campaign promise to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare.
The law’s Individual Mandate required almost every American to purchase insurance or face a penalty, but that was reduced to $0 by the Republican-backed tax overhaul legislation in 2017 and went into effect January 2019.
The president has won praise from conservatives and liberals for his proposal to require hospitals to post their actual, negotiated prices.
President Trump’s contradictory statements on firearms policy have fluctuated over the past 20 years but also over the course of three months. For example, after back-to-back mass shootings on Aug. 3 in Dayton and El Paso left 31 people dead, Mr. Trump said he was prepared to take the matter seriously, that background checks were “important” because he wanted to keep guns away from “people with rage or hate, sick people” and that a “really, really good” deal could be reached on the issue in Congress. But after speaking with NRA chief executive Wayne LaPierre, background checks were off the table.
That same day, the president told reporters in the Oval Office that background checks were a “‘slippery slope,’ and all of a sudden, everything gets taken away. We’re not going to let that happen.”*
President Trump has not released any climate plans to date (11/2019).
The president has questioned climate science for years on his personal Twitter account.
The Trump administration has rolled back many Obama-era rules on protecting the environment.*
Immigration/child-parent separation, detention and border wall
According to whitehouse.gov:
- President Trump is committed to constructing a border wall and ensuring the swift removal of unlawful entrants.
- The Trump family-separation policy along the entire US-Mexico border is intended to deter illegal immigration.
- To protect American workers, the president supports ending chain migration, eliminating the Visa Lottery, and moving the country to a merit-based entry system.
Further, the president seeks to:
- Completion of the border wall with Mexico.
- Deport immigrants who arrived in the United States as children, now protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
- Restrict travel and work visas from seven majority-Muslim countries.
- Increase the screening of refugees while cutting the staff needed to do so and curb legal immigration.
- President Trump said on October 30, 2018, that he intends to remove, by executive order, the right of citizenship to people born in the U.S. to foreign nationals.*
Economy/minimum wage/income inequality
The Republican nominee said in 2016 that he was open to raising the federal minimum wage to $10 an hour and that when he was elected, the raise would be “peanuts” compared to what people will be able to earn at the jobs created during his presidency.*
Mr. Trump’s tax reform plan was signed into law in December 2017, which included substantial tax cuts for higher-income taxpayers and corporations as well as the repeal of the individual mandate in Obamacare.**
His campaign also pledged to dismantle of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which places regulation of the financial industry in the hands of the government.***
Education/student debt/free tuition
President Trump’s 2020 budget proposal outlines these education goals:
- strike a balance between students’ needs and taxpayer interests,
- ensure fiscal discipline in discretionary spending,
- reduce the role for the federal government in education,
- reduce student loan debt,
- increase accountability for institutions of higher education,
- make higher education more affordable,
- and invest in technical and career education.
Under the president’s proposed budget, the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program would be eliminated. The proposal would impact borrowers with a new student loan starting July 1, 2020, excluding borrowers who are completing their current course of study.*
In his 2019 State of the Union speech, President Trump addressed education policy in one sentence: “To help support working parents, the time has come to pass school choice for America’s children.” **
The president’s re-election campaign website doesn’t make any higher education pledges.***
The stated aims of the foreign policy of the Trump administration include a focus on security:
- by fighting terrorists abroad and strengthening border defenses and immigration controls;
- rebuilding and expanding the U.S. military;
- an “America First” approach to trade; and
- diplomacy whereby “old enemies become friends.”1
President Trump in 2018 began setting tariffs and other trade barriers on China with the goal of forcing it to make changes to what the U.S. says are “unfair trade practices.”
The trade war has brought struggles for US farmers and manufacturers, higher prices for consumers and a significant collapse in relations between the two countries.2
As of 11/04/19, the US-China trade war has resulted in:
- $550 billion in total US tariffs applied exclusively to Chinese goods and
- $185 billion in total Chinese tariffs applied exclusively to US goods.
On 12/29/16, the FBI and DHS issued a report finding that Russian civilian and military services had engaged in malicious cyber activities, including intrusion into the U.S. political systems. The House and Senate launched investigations into whether Russia influenced the 2016 presidential elections.
On 03/20/17, the FBI confirmed it was investigating possible ties between the Trump campaign and the Russian government.3
On 05/09/17, President Trump dismissed FBI Director James Comey who had been leading an investigation into links between Trump associates and the Russian officials.
In a report released to the public on 04/18/19, Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential elections did not find sufficient evidence that the Trump campaign “coordinated or conspired with the Russian government in its election-interference activities” but did find the Russian government “interfered in the 2016 presidential election in sweeping and systematic fashion” and “violated U.S. criminal law.”4
On obstructing justice, Volume II of the Mueller Report concluded the investigation “does not conclude that the President committed a crime”; however, “it also does not exonerate him.”4
In July 2018, Mr. Trump, standing beside Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, did not accept the findings of US intelligence agencies that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential elections, saying “President Putin says it’s not Russia. I don’t see any reason why it would be.”5
On November 20, 2017, President Trump said that he would declare North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism.
On November 28, 2017, North Korea fired an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that had the trajectory to hit Washington, D.C.
On May 14, 2018, 38 North, a U.S.-based monitor of North Korea, reported that North Korea was dismantling its nuclear test site, according to satellite imagery.
On June 12, 2018, Mr. Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un concluded their summit in Singapore by signing a document in which they committed to working “toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”5
President Trump and Kim met face-to-face on February 27 and 28, 2019, in Hanoi, Vietnam, for their second in-person summit but were unable to reach an agreement on denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.6
Mr. Trump met Kim Jong Un in the Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea on June 29, 2019, and became the first U.S. president to step onto North Korean territory.
After their meeting in the DMZ, President Trump said both countries would set up “teams” to revive negotiations to dismantle North Korea’s nuclear weapons programs. 7
President Trump repeatedly expressed support for torture by the U.S. for the purpose of trying to get information from suspected terrorists and said the law should be changed to allow waterboarding and other forms of torture.
“Don’t tell me it doesn’t work — torture works,” he said during a campaign event at a retirement community in South Carolina. “Half these guys [say]: ‘Torture doesn’t work.’ Believe me, it works.”*
President Trump formally stated during his campaign that he believed states should have the right to manage their own policies with regard to medical and recreational marijuana.*
In January 2018, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the Department of Justice was ending the Obama-era lenient enforcement of marijuana laws in states where it had been legalized, and would allow federal prosecutors to decide how aggressively to enforce longstanding federal law prohibiting it.**
On Feb. 23, 2017, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said that the administration believed there was a link between recreational marijuana use and opiate abuse, despite studies that show the reverse and that marijuana use actually results in a lower incidence of opiate abuse.***
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