According to the White House website, President Donald Trump has had numerous achievements in less than one year in office. Trump stated, "From now on, America will be empowered by our aspirations, not burdened by our fears; inspired by the future, not bound by the failures of the past; and guided by our vision, not blinded by our doubts." Following is a summation of some of the main points of the one-year report of the Trump administration.
Under the rubric of "Jumpstarting America's workers and economic engine," the White House stated that he has "put the American economy into high-gear, creating jobs and increasing wealth. Under President Trump’s leadership, Congress passed historic tax cuts and relief for hardworking Americans not seen since President Reagan." The Republican Tax Cuts Act provides $5.5 trillion in tax cuts, of which $3.2 trillion, or nearly 60 percent, goes to families, according to the White House.
Benefits for Taxpayers
- A typical family of four earning $75,000 will save more than $2,000 in income tax cuts.
- The Tax Cuts Act nearly doubles the standard deduction.
- The vast majority of American families will be able to file their taxes on a single page.
- The Tax Cuts Act will repeal Obamacare’s burdensome individual mandate.
Growing the economy
The White House touted improvements in the overall economy, stating that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate "increased at or above 3 percent for two quarters in a row for the first time in three years, while the third quarter GDP growth rate was 3.2 percent, and second quarter GDP growth rate was 3.1 percent.
- 1.7 million jobs created
- Unemployment drops to 4.1 percent, lowest in 17 years
- Manufacturers create 159,000 jobs
"During President Trump’s first year, nearly 1.7 million new jobs have been created and the unemployment rate has fallen to 4.1 percent, the lowest rate in nearly 17 years. The manufacturing industry has created 159,000 jobs. The mining and logging industry has created 57,000 jobs. Thirteen states have reached record low unemployment rates. The Dow Jones Industrial Average index has hit record highs more than 60 times under President Trump, including closing higher than 24,000 points for the first time in its history. Since President Trump’s election, more than $5 trillion in wealth has been added to the U.S. economy."
Focus on apprenticeships
In other areas, the White House noted that Trump signed an Executive Order to expand apprenticeships, "recognizing the need for more quality alternatives to four-year college degrees," while making it easer for businesses to "create and scale apprenticeship programs, providing many more Americans access to an affordable education that leads to a good-paying job."
The statement also noted that the president, is "rolling back wasteful and costly regulations that have stood in the way of hardworking Americans." It noted that he signed an Executive Order mandating that two regulations must be eliminated for every one created. President Trump’s Administration surpassed the 2:1 ratio, eliminating 22 regulations for every new regulation. In FY 2017, President Trump’s Administration saved over $8.1 billion in lifetime regulatory costs."
Keeping America out of bad deals
Regarding Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement, the White House said that Trump protected America from a bad deal that would have cost the United States economy nearly $3 trillion and 6.5 million industrial sector jobs by 2040. In addition, it spoke of an Executive Order that the White House claimed will reduce the time for permit approvals for infrastructure projects from up to 10 years to an average of 2 years."
Other points raised by the White House statement:
- President Trump eliminated the Obama Administration’s “Stream Protection Rule,” which unfairly targeted the coal industry with estimated costs of $81 million a year.
- One of President Trump’s first actions was to withdraw the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, advancing his agenda to protect American workers.
- Renegotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement are underway to modernize the deal so all countries benefit from it.
- Since President Trump was sworn into office, the Department of Commerce has initiated 79 antidumping and countervailing duties (AD/CVD) investigations.
Strengthening the border
Immigration and border security were signature issues for Trump while he ran his presidential campaign. Issues such as chain migration, which is the right American citizens and legal aliens have to sponsor their relatives as immigrants, have become the focus of attention in the aftermath of several terrorist attacks committed by legal residents. The White House statement claimed that Trump seeks to reform immigration and "serve hard-working Americans instead of harming them. To this end, Trump has called on Congress to fund a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico, restrict illegal immigration, end chain migration, and eliminate the Visa Lottery program.
- President Trump pulled out of “Global Compact on Migration,” which would have had "far-reaching implications for U.S. sovereignty."
- The Department of Homeland Security is winding down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
- Rescinded the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) program.
- The Department of Homeland Security launched the office of Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement (VOICE).
According to the statement, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) made 110,568 arrests of illegal aliens through the end of FY2017: a 40 percent increase compared to the same time period the prior year. Removals that resulted from arrests increased by 37 percent.
- Over 92 percent of illegal aliens arrested by ICE had criminal convictions or pending criminal charges, were ICE fugitives, or were illegal reentrants.
- In FY 2017, 36 percent more criminal gang members were removed by ICE compared to FY 2016.
- The Administration is "cracking down on sanctuary cities by improving the administration of Federal grants to increase information sharing on illegal aliens."
See the entire White House statement here.
Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat and the editor of Spero News.