Views & Perspectives | Trump’s actions and inaction

RAY LAHOOD

RAY LAHOOD

June 4 was the 500th day of President Trump in the White House. Trump’s trade policy is a disaster for American agriculture and American business.

The tariffs on agricultural commodities are horrible policy for our farmers. The tariffs are horrible policy for our friends in Canada, Mexico, Europe and China. All of these tariffs are being done through provisions of foreign and defense laws and rules that are a perversion of these laws and rules.

President Trump attended the G-7 Summit in Canada arriving late, leaving early, offending many of our close allies and friends. Plus after leaving the G-7 Summit, President Trump calls Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau “meek and mild and weak.”

Congress should hold hearings to review these tariffs and question Trump Administration officials on their viability and use in these instances. These tariffs are a total insult to our relationships and friendships with these countries and Europe. Trade policies were developed over several decades. Congress has not passed a budget. However, a $1.3 billion appropriation bill passed with no way to pay for the funding that Trump signed and then criticized.

The Trump Administration and Congress have not taken action to fix our broken immigration system that leaves many illegal immigrants and their families living in the shadows worried about deportation. Our DACA families deserve to have a clear path to citizenship.

America is one big pothole with no transportation or infrastructure legislation or the funding to pay for much needed projects to fix our deteriorating interstate system or 60,000 structurally deficient bridges.

Communities all over America are full of potholes and deteriorating roads. America’s transit and bus systems are 50 to 60 years old with deteriorating tracks, engines and cars as well as old buses. The Trump Administration squandered the first year unsuccessfully trying to eliminate Obamacare. The appointment of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch and a number of federal judge appointments certainly was a significant accomplishment for the Trump Administration and the United States Senate. Congress passed a tax cut benefitting corporate America to a large extent and individual taxpayers to a much smaller extent. Regulation reform through Presidential Executive Order has eliminated many of the Obama rules and regulations. We have seen hundreds of tweets from President Trump communicating with his supporters and the rest of America. The loss of many key staff from the White House and Cabinet has crippled the Administration’s ability to achieve much success. The recent meeting between North Korea’s president and President Trump seems to have served as a very nice photo opportunity for each leader. Time will tell if any concrete solutions between America and North Korea develop. I am dubious.

The one very bright hopeful development is the economy. Our country has the lowest unemployment rate in decades. With an election on the horizon in November, I am not hopeful Congress and the Trump Administration will accomplish much. They should fix a broken immigration policy. They should fix our broken transportation and infrastructure. They should get our federal fiscal house in order. They should fix our dysfunctional trade policy. The Senate has cancelled its August recess break and perhaps the House of Representatives should do the same and complete their legislative work for the American people.

Ray LaHood



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