Well That Happened: Understanding President Trump’s Policies

Article by: Joaquin Mayo

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On the 8th of November 2016, Donald J. Trump was elected as the 45th President of the United States and on the 8th of November 2016, the entire landscape of American and global politics changed.

A highly controversial and divisive figure, Trump was more known for his reality television pursuits and businesses rather than his political prowess before the election. Because he was not only politically inexperienced but also made many discriminatory remarks about ethnic minorities, women, and the LGBT community, many Americans doubted his capabilities to come out victorious. While Trump identified himself as a Republican for this election, he has made several contradictory statements in regards to his political beliefs. For example, Trump vocalized his support for the renegotiation of the Iran nuclear deal but a few days later, retracted the very same comments, suggesting it was unrealistic (NBC News). However, his central policies still hold: free-market healthcare, the reduction of taxes, and perhaps most notably, stricter immigration laws.

From wanting to build a wall on the Mexican border to banning Muslims from entering America, Trump has shown how he plans to implement stricter foreign policies and immigration laws. No country is spared from Trump’s judgement and the Philippines is no exception. Ever since the 1940s, the United States and the Philippines have always maintained good diplomatic and trading relations. However, Trump’s presidency threatens to form a rift between the two allies. Trump has already publicly stated that he would not approve of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a trade agreement among 12 nations along the Pacific Rim, thereby lessening the ties between the two nations. Furthermore, potential investments from the United States in the Philippines may be at risk as there may be a lack of incentive to outsource business due to the shifting trade policies. Trump has even gone as far to label the Philippines as a terrorist nation and refuses to let animals enter the United States (New York Times). Thus, Trump’s foreign policy can be succinctly described as “anti-trade and isolationist” in nature (CNN Philippines).

Sophomore Anjo N. followed the entire election process and described Trump’s potential treatment towards the Philippines as a “scary thought” and that “because of the number of OFWs in the United States, the possible effects of Trump’s foreign policy will affect the economy of the Philippines as well”.

Conversely, sophomore Ario B., an American citizen, shares Anjo’s worries and says that “if ever something were to happen to between the two nations, it would complicate even the simplest things such as travelling”.

As Trump is set to be inaugurated on January 20, 2017, nothing is set in stone and in today’s world, anything can change in a blink of an eye. How Trump’s administration will affect the overall safety and state of higher education in the United States remains a concern for ISM students, particularly for seniors applying to universities in America, leading some to consider alternatives in Europe and Canada. This leaves us the question: Will Trump go through with his intended policies or is he simply all bark and no bite? At this point, only time will tell.