Trumps Foreign Policy Moments
Donald J. Trumps presidency marked a profound departure from U.S. leadership in areas such as trade and diplomacy, as well as an across-the-board toughening of immigration policies.
In his inaugural address, President Donald J. Trump announces an America First approach to foreign policy and trade, which centers on reducing U.S. trade deficits and rebalancing burden sharing within alliances. Trump promises to unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism and emphasizes that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first.
Trump directs the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to withdraw the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a twelve-country, Asia-focused trade agreement the United States had championed under the Barack Obama administration.
The president signs an executive order banning nationals of six Muslim-majority countries from traveling to the United States for ninety days. The order, later amended to include an additional two countries, also indefinitely freezes refugee intake from Syria. Days later, a federal judge in Washington State blocks part of the order, beginning a series of judicial challenges. That same week, Trump signs two other executive orders concerning immigration. One directs federal funds to the construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, and the other bars so-called sanctuary cities from receiving federal grants.
Us 2020 Election: The Economy Under Trump In Six Charts
Claim: President Trump says he built the greatest ever US economy prior to the coronavirus outbreak and that now it’s recovering faster than ever.
Reality Check verdict: It’s true the economy was doing well prior to the pandemic – continuing a trend which began during the Obama administration – but there have been periods when it was much stronger.
The US economy was then hit by the biggest economic contraction ever recorded as a result of the pandemic. It has since bounced back strongly, but hasn’t regained all its losses.
We’ve looked at the economy in six key charts.
The latest numbers show economic output surged by an annualised 33% in the third quarter of 2020, following a record fall as a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic.
The recovery, although strong, hasn’t yet brought economic activity back to pre-pandemic levels.
Mr Trump has said the recent recovery in growth is “the biggest in the history of our country by almost triple…that’s bigger than any nation”.
Yes, it is the biggest quarterly increase, but by more like double – outdoing the previous peak of 16.7% in the first quarter of 1950.
However, Mr Trump’s comparison with other countries isn’t right. From July to September this year, the economy grew by 7.4% in the US . This is less than Germany, Italy and the eurozone as a whole.
During his first three years in office, President Trump oversaw an annual average growth of 2.5%.
Biden Is Closer To Trump Than To Obama
Democrats unease comes from knowing President Biden is closer to President Trump than to President Obama. They know that in order to succeed, Biden must be closer to Obama than to Trump. What they do not know is how America will view Biden once they have known him longer and the going gets tougher.
Looking broadly at Bidens polling numbers, they appear pretty good especially in comparison to Trumps. Real Clear Politicss average of national polling on March 15, showed Biden with 53 percent approval and 42 percent disapproval. Such a positive spread seems a comfortable margin.
Looking inside those numbers though shows cause for concern. Among RCPs eight listed polls, only one, Rasmussen, polled likely voters . How do we know this? I clicked on the Rasmussen link but didnt see anything but the results the rest at best polled registered voters . Of course, the people who put Biden in office are those who actually voted they are also the ones who could take him out in four years.
In Rasmussens March 10 results, Bidens approval was just 50 percent and his disapproval 48 percent. This is still better than where Trump was on the same day in 2017 , but a far sight from where Obama was on the same day in 2009 . Despite the favorable comparison that won Biden the White House, Biden is closer to Trump than he is to Obama.
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Help From The Federal Reserve
Facts first:It’s true that Fed policies helped the economy recover from the Great Recession under Obama, and while its key interest rate is higher now than it ever was under the previous president– it was cut last year for the first time since 2008.kept the federal funds ratethree separate times
Mideast Diplomats: Trump Is Better Than Obama
At a high-level conference in Morocco, Arab diplomats say they would rather have a U.S. administration that spouts anti-Muslim rhetoric to get elected than one that makes deals with Iran.
MARRAKECH, MorrocoDisappointed by the Obama administration that promised warmer relations with the Arab world, Mideast diplomats say they are looking forward to dealing with a more pragmaticand directPresident Donald Trump, no matter what he might have said about Muslims to get elected.
No, no, it doesnt bother me, said Youssef Amrani, adviser to Moroccan King Mohammed VI, when asked about Trumps call for a Muslim ban and National Security Advisor nominee Mike Flynns tweet saying fear of Muslims is rational.
The strategic dialogue is between two governments and it will continue, he said, side-stepping any direct comment on Trumps campaign rhetoric.
They prefer someone who hates Islam to an administration that loves Iran, said one high ranking Mideast diplomat, in a less-diplomatic comment that was echoed by many at the Atlantic Dialogues in Marrakech, here to debate the security of African, Mideast and European nations and their ties to the U.S.
The Arab world is more sophisticated than perhaps Americans realize. We recognize campaign rhetoric. Theyll flip when in office, the diplomat predicted, insisting on anonymity to discuss her countrys disappointment with the Obama administration.
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If Biden Is Elected President He Should Continue Trumps Economic Approach Rather Than Returning To Barack Obamas
Joe Biden has argued that President Donald Trump didnt so much build a strong economy as inherit one. Its good line but it ignores the successes, at least before the pandemic, of Trumps unconventional policy. If Biden is elected president, he should continue Trumps economic approach rather than returning to Barack Obamas.
Between December 2009 and December 2016, the unemployment rate dropped 5.2 percentage points, from 9.9% to 4.7%. By December 2019, it had fallen another 1.2 percentage points, to 3.5%. A cursory look at those numbers might lead you to believe that the improvement under Trump was at best a continuation of a trend that began nearly a decade earlier.
Its necessary to place those numbers in context. By 2016, officials in the Treasury Department and at the Federal Reserve had concluded that the economy was at full employment and that further improvement in the labor market was unlikely. This was in line with the Congressional Budget Offices guidance that further declines in the unemployment rate would push the economy beyond its sustainable capacity.
Once in office, Trump ignored this consensus. He implemented a program of tax cuts, spending increases and unprecedented pressure on the Fed to cut interest rates to zero and keep them there. Trumps goal of 3% growth was derided as delusional, while a bipartisan chorus of commentators declared his policies reckless and irresponsible.
Wages Grew Steadily Under Bush And Slowed Under Obama They Started Picking Up Again Under Trump But The Pandemic’s Impact Skewed This Year’s Data
Wage growth is usually a good indicator of how much the economy is benefiting average workers. But the chart above illustrates the shortfalls of relying too much on a single metric given the devastation that the pandemic has caused.
Wage gains were steady for most of the Bush administration, ranging between 2% and 4% each year. Then it took a hit during the Great Recession, and wage growth was anemic for much of the Obama presidency.
The initial years of the Trump presidency coincided with a rise in wages as the economy expanded and employers competed to hire workers. They grew above 3% starting in 2018.
Millions of low-wage workers were sidelined in the early months of the pandemic, while many higher-wage white collar workers were able to continue working remotely.
It artificially dragged up the average wage for those still able to work, according to an analysis from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. It’s expected to drop as more hourly workers regain their jobs.
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The Historical Precedent For Job Gains Is Mixed
The economy didn’t substantially add jobs early on in Bush’s presidency. But it started picking up until the 2008 financial crisis.
The Obama administration moved to stem those job losses early on in his term, and the economy stabilized in 2010. With the recovery underway, employers added jobs, coming out to an average of 224,000 gains per month in Obama’s last three years.
Job growth during the Trump presidency had mostly matched its pace under Obama before 2020. In the first three years up to February, the economy added 182,000 jobs monthly on average.
But pandemic-related job losses left a crater in the economy. Many experts say it will take several years for the labor market to recover from the blow.
Fact Check: Graphic Comparing Trump And Obama Is From 2018 And Contains An Approval Rating Error
13 Min Read
In November 2020, a 2018 graphic comparing President Donald Trump and President Barack Obama by the numbers resurfaced on social media. The chart presents figures showing the Trump administration had outperformed the Obama administration in terms of presidential approval, unemployment, job growth, the federal deficit and gross domestic product growth.
One such post, first shared on Facebook in Sept. 2018, can be found here . At the time of this articles publication, the post had been shared over 17,000 times.
The post began to circulate again in late 2020, both leading up to the 2020 presidential election and following major news outlets decision to call the race for Joe Biden . In these later shares, no date for the figures being compared is given, which may have led some to conclude that the figures were recent. Moreover, these figures lack meaning without considering the wider economic context in which they were recorded.
As reported here by Snopes on Aug. 13, 2018, President Trumps oldest child, Donald Trump, Jr., shared the graphic in a now-deleted Instagram on Aug. 8 . The image, however, was a doctored version of a graphic that was originally used during a CNN fact-checking segment regarding a tweet posted by President Trump about his approval numbers, according to Snopes.
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How Long Is The Economy Still Considered ‘obama’s’ Or ‘trump’s’
The U.S. economy is so large and complex that it’s difficult to determine exactly when one president’s policies start to have more of an impact than the previous president’s. It may be easier to measure the impact of specific policies rather than trying to pin down the effects of an entire administration.
Trump Has Banished The Ghost Of Ronald Reagan
When Obama first ran for the Oval Office in 2008, he was widely criticized for saying he wanted to be a transformational president like Ronald Reagan.
Reagans governing philosophy slashing taxes for the wealthy, reducing government regulation, cutting social programs has been the dominant political ideology for the last 30 years. Reagan distilled it in one memorable phrase: Government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem.
Were now in a time in American history and in world history where we cannot imply afford to be moderate. We cant afford to just be tinkering around the edges.
Rutger Bregman, historian and author
Some hoped that Obama would be the liberal version of Reagan and restore faith in the federal government. He did marshal government resources to save the nation from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. He also sparked the longest economic expansion in US history.
Obamas cultural impact is also incalculable. A generation of American children grew up thinking there was nothing strange about seeing a man of color in the Oval Office.
And yet Obama seemed to be afflicted by the same political disorder that still paralyzes some Democratic leaders: He was haunted by the Reagan era. He governed at times more like a Republican. He proposed cutting Social Security to ensure its long-term viability. He reduced government spending. He even included conservative ideas in his signature legislative achievement, Obamacare.
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Why Obama Is Better Than Trump From A To Z
This past Friday, on a literal split TV screen, I was again reminded of the virtual though perceptually painful whiplash I have been continually experiencing since that dreadful evening of November 8, 2016 when the United States Electoral College indicated that Donald Trump would soon take over the reins of government from Barack Obama.
Today former President Obama gave an inspirational speech at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as he was honored with an Ethics in Government award.
As Obama was speaking to the group of enthusiastic students and staff, Donald Trump called on his beleaguered attorney general, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, to smoke out the person or persons whom Trump accused of being a traitor who penned a scathing indictment of Trumps management style, low intelligence, deranged character, and diminished cognition.
The juxtaposition could not have been more stark from A to Z, for a chasm the size of the ever-expanding universe would not fill the gap between Presidents 44 and 45. While Obama certainly manifests many flaws, these pale when placed side-by-side with Trump.
Obama ALERTED the world to the threats and dangers of crude nationalism and white supremacy presented in the guise of popularism, which feeds on peoples fears and prejudices resulting in the separation of people and nations from one another. Trump has empowered this fascist movement by instigating panics of the other in the electorate.
Comparing Trump And Obama In The Final Stretches Of Their First Terms
Democrats were not pleased with President Barack Obama in August 2011. The country was recovering from The Great Recession, and Democrats were battling with Republicans in Congress over the debt ceiling. The fiscal fights arrived amid slides in the economy and fears of another American recession, and the Obama administration watched key polling indicators shift into negative territory as the economy teetered.
Most Americans, including members of Obama’s own party, thought the country was on the wrong track before his re-election.
Its not unlike what President Donald Trump is facing today. Republican belief that the country is off on the wrong track has doubled from early January to this week as the nation experiences economic turmoil as coronavirus cases continue to rise.
The Economist/YouGov Poll asks Americans each week to share whether they believe things in this country today are generally headed in the right direction or off on the wrong track. Since YouGov asks this question weekly for each administration, it is possible to compare how Americans felt about the direction of the country from President Obama’s inauguration through his re-election in 2012 against the same data from President Trump’s inauguration up to present time.
It took several months before Obama regained his partys faith, but by January 2012, the high disapproval leveled off and a plurality of Democrats thought the country was headed in the right direction .
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Economic Recovery Under Obama
At CNN, we start with the facts. Visit CNN’s home for Facts First.Facts First:If you look solely at the average rate of GDP growth, it’s true that that the economy recovered more slowly after the Great Recession than during previous rebounds. But growth hasn’t been exceptionally better under Trump.GDP growthexperienced since World War II
The Stock Market Has Grown Under Trump As Well As Obama And Bush Though Recessions Have Slammed It
The benchmark S& P 500 measures the market capitalization-weighted stock performance of 500 large corporations listed on US exchanges. It’s one of Trump’s favorite scorecards to measure his economic record, though many economists say the stock market doesn’t fully reflect the economy.
The S& P 500 ticked upward for most of Bush’s presidency. It then took a severe hit during the Great Recession, though it started a rapid rebound early on in Obama’s tenure.
Stocks made considerable gains under Obama, which continued when Trump took office promising tax cuts and deregulation. Then the pandemic floored the stock market, causing it to plunge roughly 30% in March.
But a rebound catalyzed by swift economic-relief efforts and market-leading gains in tech juggernauts like Amazon and Google parent Alphabet have again pushed stocks near new highs.
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Tax Cut And Jobs Act Deregulation And National Debt
Even before the virus further exacerbated U.S. income inequality, some experts say Trumps economic policies favored the wealthy — and left the poor and middle class behind.
His Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in December 2017 provided major tax breaks to corporations and wealthy individuals. The policy, among other things, reduced the corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21%.
Frankel called the policy “beyond ironic” for a president “who campaigned in 2016 on being the champion of the working man or working person and campaigned on ‘draining the swamp’ in Washington.”
Shierholz said this policy “absolutely increased inequality” and the “vast majority of the benefits of those tax cuts went to the already very wealthy.”
The economists also noted that the policy came at a time when unemployment was relatively low and the economy in good shape.
“That’s not the time to be giving away trillions of dollars to the wealthy,” Frankel said. “When you have a bad shock like the global financial crisis of 2008-09 or like the coronavirus crisis that we’re still going through — that’s the time to increase government spending and expansionary fiscal policy, but you lose the ability to do that if you gave it away.”
NYU’s Bowmaker noted that some “can make the case that the corporate tax rate was a little bit too high” and would welcome the tax cuts.
Despite his goal, the debt has ballooned under Trump. The total national debt has skyrocketed by more than $7 trillion during Trumps tenure.