Presidential Actions: Looking at the beginning of the Trump era

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The beginning of a presidency is a test to prove to the American people of a president’s capabilities. For President Trump, the magnitude of this test has been taken a step further as he has even more to prove than past presidents due to his record low approval ratings and a loss of the popular vote. He has made an immense amount of promises that he has doubled-down on throughout his campaign. Now, his actions as president are making big waves throughout the world.

One of the more impressive feats that has shocked the world day-in and day-out is his formation of an administration. He has managed to create a conservative all-star team to shake up Washington like never before. His nominees have received applause from the right and in some cases the left. However, there is a potential crack in his cabinet.

There have been numerous allegations that the Trump administration was involved with Russia throughout his campaign and even now in the White House. Former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn’s resignation followed a request to step down by President Trump. In his letter, Michael Flynn revealed that he was misleading Mike Pence, the then vice president elect, in his previous calls with a Russian ambassador in December.

Furthermore, Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from all investigations of Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential elections after supposedly lying in response to a question about his involvement with the country in his Senate confirmation hearing.

President Trump’s reactions to accusations from both sides of the aisle have been inflammatory to say the least. Trump was reported to be furious after Sessions recused himself and asserted that other people in government were more guilty of colluding with Russia, such as Senator Chuck Schumer and Representative Nancy Pelosi, both Democrats.

It seems as though the government is at a loss in looking into Russian interference with the Republicans reluctant to stand up to Trump and the Democrats powerless in almost every area of government. Yet, issues with Russia, both foreign and domestic, seem to linger in the distance without much action. If there is so much smoke, then where is the fire we are trying to douse?

Trump’s recent executive order on extreme vetting from six countries: Syria, Libya, Sudan, Yemen, Iran, and Somalia- has sent some Americans into a frenzy. The main purpose of this executive order is to protect the nation from foreign terrorists entering the United States. However, many consider this action to be a “Muslim ban,” which has only generated more fear and distrust within the nation.

Arin Avsar, junior, believes that every president has the right to block people coming from different countries from entering the United States. He argues that Trump’s executive order “aims at certain religious groups,” making it a discriminatory action. In contrast, Derek Henry, junior, argues that Trump’s agenda is not to “ban” Muslims from entering the country, but to “strengthen domestic security.”

As a figure of power and influence, Trump’s controversial comments about women have made many uneasy. The most controversial of these comments was an incident where Trump, having a conversation with Billy Bush from Access Hollywood, made lewd comments that many felt condoned sexual assault. “I do not support Donald Trump mainly because he does not respect women. As a woman, it is really hard to support someone who condones sexual assault,” Layla Degani, senior, said. Despite some support behind Trump’s “unique speaking style”, his opinions on women have greatly damaged his public image.

One of Trump’s promises while running for office was to build an “impenetrable, physical, tall, powerful, beautiful southern border wall” between the U.S. and Mexico. Republicans have estimated the cost to the public as being between $12 billion and $15 billion, however researchers at MIT have projected it to be around $40 billion. Throughout his campaign and the beginning of his presidency, Trump continued to insist that he will be forcing Mexico to pay for the wall, despite the consistent assertions from Enrique Peña Nieto, the President of Mexico, that Mexico will not be paying. It has now been revealed that Mexico will indeed not being paying for Trump’s wall, instead it will be the job of U.S. taxpayers. Although many citizens are opposed to this, Henry states, “people just need to come together to work for America.” However, the last time the U.S. tried building a fence, it ran over budget and was cancelled halfway, so Trump’s border wall may face some resistance for both financial and political reasons on Capitol Hill.

In a short amount of time, Trump’s presidential actions have caused a variety of reactions across the nation. Nothing like any other politician or president for that matter, Trump’s new recent orders are considered groundbreaking to many. Whether one agrees with Trump’s actions or not, as Henry says, “the biggest thing anyone wants for America is for America to prosper.”

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