The Candor

How Trump is Deliberately Undoing Obama’s Policies

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Omair Ali

Perspectives Editor

Sometimes, desperate times can call for desperate measures. And in President Trump’s case, being desperate and impatient with others has defined his presidency during the first few months as he scrambled to implement one executive order after another. It can be noted that his actions are not without consequences. It seems like Trump’s strategy to win the hearts of the American people is to run an anti-Obama campaign—to literally undo much of what was done during the past 8 years— and that’s a risky strategy that can build public disdain for Trumpian politics.

How Trump is Undoing Obama’s Policies

Trump’s spontaneity has always made it difficult to predict what it is he wants, even within his own party. Initially some assumed that Trump would remain true to Republican politics, yet he has acted in many ways that several Republican congressmen don’t necessarily agree with. Take the GOP health care proposal, the bill that was meant to repeal and replace Obamacare. The repeal of Obamacare meant so much to Trump that he released an executive order on the first day of his presidency, pledging to remove the Affordable Care Act as soon as possible.  The GOP Health Care bill was meant to repeal Obamacare, but it ultimately failed to pass due to opposition in the House of Representatives. In response to same-party opposition, Trump was belligerent and threatened to challenge House members during the 2018 election cycle. A leader that is so hell-bent on getting what he wants that he threatens the jobs of those he does not command is both unscrupulous and evident of his self-centered views. Perhaps this is why Trump was so quick to move on to deconstructing climate change policies almost immediately after the health care fiasco: he is desperately seeking a victory.

During his presidential campaign, and even now, President Trump acknowledged the necessity to maintain clean air and water. But at the same time, he has denounced initiatives support by Obama, including the Paris Agreement. As well, his most recent executive order calls for ending restrictions on coal mining industries, including the water pollution restrictions that the Obama administration implemented. In other words, Trump has decided to attack drive climate policy by attacking and antagonizing Obama’s climate policy with the hope of appeasing his supporter base. While he might be staying true to modern Republican values, his latest executive order on climate change is rash. His order does not stay true to his words of trying to provide clean air and water to the people, as he removes restrictions that would otherwise protect air and water. He is trying to revive the coal industry, which will be very difficult to achieve, but his consolation is that he effectively ends the long-time restrictions the Obama-administration has posed on the coal mining industry.

Trump’s Plan Will Result in Consequences

Sure, it appears that Trump is acting in ways that many of us expected: Trying to drop Obamacare and reversing the government’s position on climate change. However, Trump’s actions speak far more than his affiliation with the Republicans. For a long time, the mainstream liberal media has criticized and even ridiculed Trump that would frustrate even the most level-headed of us all the while Trump has not been able to achieve what he has wanted. In Trump’s position, frustration is certainly understandable, but Trump does a poor job of maintaining composure. It is not difficult to point out his frequent tantrums on social media and in press conferences, where he mocks and belittles media outlets, politicians, and other ideological opponents. If Trump is emotionally-prone to provocation and failures, then what would stop him from seeking vengeance or trying to pass the blame on others? This is where the Obama administration’s policies could come into play as a collection of political punching-bags with which Trump can achieve a false sense of victory.

Obliterating Obama’s policies is a poor strategy that not only fails to address disregard his declining approval rating but also narrows his focus to only establishing an anti-Obama philosophy in the White House and constructing an anti-Obama agenda to run with for the next four years. While a lot of people did not like Obama, focusing on negating Obama’s policies is not necessarily going to help the needs of the people, whose concerns are different than Trump’s. But perhaps this is a good thing. For the past few months, we’ve had a president that is predominantly concerned with his supporters and is unwilling to adopt new perspectives on the issues. If he continues to attack the previous administrations policies, then he will continue to lose his chance to run a second term.