President Donald Trump wasted no time making changes after his inauguration just five days ago. He’s already made major decisions that will effect plenty of people. So is it the apocalypse or a positive new era for American politics?
Let’s take a look.
-Support for the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipeline
One of the biggest grassroots movements of 2016 was in protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Groups united across the country to battle the construction, citing climate, environmental and cultural concerns. Trump now reignites this conflict as he moves for the pipeline to be continued.
Trump has also asked lawmakers to reintroduce legislation to allow the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. It was previously vetoed by Barack Obama.
This is right in line with Trump’s commitment to the energy industry and his vow to create energy-related jobs despite potential environmental damage. With these moves Trump also solidifies himself as an opponent to climate change efforts, which is not surprising given his 2012 tweet, "The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive."
-Abandonment of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP)
The Trans-Pacific Partnership, a proposed free-trade agreement between the US and 11 other countries, came under attack during the first debate between Trump and Hillary Clinton. Trump called Clinton out for praising the agreement as a "gold standard."
Throughout his campaign Trump vowed to scrap the deal. In doing so, many feel Trump opens the door for China to escalate trade with those 11 booming countries.
In contrast, Trump has said he intends to actually re-negotiate NAFTA, the 32-year-old trade agreement between Canada, Mexico and the US.
-Reinstatement of the "Global Gag Rule," or Mexico City Policy
The Mexico City Policy, first implemented by Ronald Reagan in 1984, blocks all federal aid to groups overseas who are involved with abortion.
It is a policy that has shifted during the last five administrations. After Reagan enacted it, Bill Clinton removed it, then George Bush re-enacted it and then Barack Obama removed it. Now Trump has reinstated it again.
Groups dependent on this funding also provide contraception and HIV prevention services. Trump has been criticized for signing the agreement surrounded by an all-male audience; certainly a bad PR move.
-Freeze on Federal hiring
On Monday Trump fulfilled a campaign promise by freezing federal jobs. Jobs in the military, national security and public safety are not included.
The move was met with criticism. "The federal budget cannot be balanced on the backs of our federal workforce," said Rep. Barbara Comstock, (R-VA.) It falls in line with Trump’s campaign promise to "drain the swamp," his campaign solution to fix the federal government.
While it was certainly no apocalypse, Trump did follow through on campaign promises. But it’s important to remember that those same promises earned him only 46 percent of the popular vote.