Bit by bit, Trump methodically undoing Obama policies

 Politics, U.S. Congress, UnionGOP  Comments Off on Bit by bit, Trump methodically undoing Obama policies
Apr 032017
 

(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

(AP) — Amid the turmoil over staff shake-ups, blocked travel bans and the Russia cloud hanging overhead, President Donald Trump is steadily plugging away at a major piece of his agenda: Undoing Obama.

From abortion to energy to climate change and personal investments, Trump is keeping his promises in methodically overturning regulations and policies adopted when Barack Obama was president.

It hasn’t all been smooth sailing.

Trump recently failed to fulfill his pledge to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, which continues to stand as Obama’s most recognizable domestic policy achievement. Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan couldn’t persuade enough fellow Republicans to back new health care legislation last month. Ryan pulled the measure just before a scheduled House vote.

Trump has had better outcomes in other areas.

CLIMATE CHANGE

Trump signed an executive order last week to deliver on his pledge to unravel Obama’s efforts to curb global warming. The order launched a review of the Clean Power Plan, Obama’s chief effort to curb carbon emissions by restricting greenhouse gas emissions at coal-fired power plants. Trump also lifted a 14-month-old halt on new coal leases on federal lands. The Obama administration had imposed a three-year freeze on such leases in January of last year.

The executive order covers a range of other Obama-era rules, including requirements to factor the “social cost” of carbon emissions into all regulatory actions and to crack down on methane emissions at oil and gas wells. Business groups had complained to Trump, himself a businessman, that the rules were intrusive and expensive.

INTERNET PRIVACY

Trump is expected to sign a measure soon to block online privacy regulations the Federal Communications Commission issued during Obama’s final months in office. It’s a first step toward allowing internet providers to sell information about their customers’ browsing habits. The FCC rule was designed to give consumers more control over how companies like Comcast, AT&T and Verizon share information. Critics complained that the rule would have increased costs, stifled innovation and picked winners and losers among internet companies.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer says the rule represents the type of “federal overreach” that Trump pledged as a candidate to reverse.

ABORTION/FAMILY PLANNING

Trump is expected to sign legislation erasing another Obama rule, one that barred states from withholding federal family planning funds from Planned Parenthood affiliates and other clinics that provide abortions. The rule was finalized shortly before Obama left office in January.

The measure cleared the Senate last week with Vice President Mike Pence, who is also president of the Senate, casting the tie-breaking 51st vote in the 100-member chamber.

KEYSTONE XL OIL PIPELINE

Trump greenlighted the long-delayed project on March 24, reversing Obama’s decision less than 18 months earlier. After Trump invited TransCanada, the Canadian company building the $8 billion pipeline, to resubmit its application, the State Department approved the project, saying it would advance U.S. national interests. Obama had said the project would not.

Approval came nearly a decade after TransCanada applied to complete the 1,700-mile (2,735 kilometers) pipeline to carry oil from tar sands in Alberta, Canada, to refineries along the Texas Gulf Coast.

Trump says the project will reduce costs and reliance on foreign oil, and create thousands of jobs. Obama had said it would undercut U.S. credibility in international efforts to tackle climate change.

DAKOTA ACCESS PIPELINE

Under Obama, the Army Corps of Engineers had declined in December to allow pipeline construction under South Dakota’s Lake Oahe on grounds that alternate routes needed to be considered. Native American tribes had sued to block construction, arguing that the pipeline threatened their water supply and cultural sites.

The project has moved forward again under Trump, who acted shortly after taking office. In February, the Army Corps of Engineers abandoned further study and granted an easement that was needed to complete the pipeline. Energy Transfer Partners immediately began drilling under the lake.

FUEL EFFICIENCY STANDARDS

The Trump administration is re-examining federal requirements governing the fuel efficiency of cars and trucks. In 2012, the Obama administration set fuel economy regulations for model years 2017-2025 and agreed to complete a midterm evaluation by next year. Then, days before Obama left office, the Environmental Protection Agency decided to keep stringent requirements it had set in place for model years 2022-2025.

The auto industry balked. Trump announced in Michigan that he’s putting the midterm review back on track. His decision has no immediate effect but requires the EPA to determine no later than April 2018 whether the 2022-2025 standards are appropriate.

TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP

Obama was his administration’s biggest cheerleader for the sweeping agreement involving the U.S. and 11 other Pacific Rim nations. But the Senate needed to ratify it, and bipartisan opposition basically doomed it before he left office.

As a candidate, Trump railed against this agreement and pledged to withdraw from it, saying he was a better negotiator and could strike better deals. Shortly after taking office, he directed the U.S. trade representative to withdraw and said he would pursue individual deals with the other countries.

ABORTION/MEXICO CITY POLICY

Trump reinstated a ban on providing federal money to international groups that perform abortions or provide information about them. Obama had lifted the ban when he took office in 2009.

Known as the “Mexico City Policy” or, by critics, as the “global gag rule,” the regulation has been a political volleyball, instituted by Republican administrations and rescinded by Democratic ones since 1984. Trump signed it one day after the 44th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe vs. Wade decision that legalized abortion in the United States. The policy also prohibits taxpayer funding for groups that lobby to legalize abortion or promote it as a family planning method.

PERSONAL FINANCE

Trump has instructed the Department of Labor to delay an Obama-era rule that would require financial professionals who charge commissions to put their clients’ best interests first when advising them on retirement investments. The “fiduciary rule” was aimed at blocking consultants from steering clients toward investments with higher commissions and fees that can eat away at retirement savings. The rule was to take effect this month. The financial services industry argued that the rule would limit retirees’ investment choices by forcing asset managers to steer them to low-risk options.

Undoing the rule was part of a promised assault by Trump on banking rules enacted after the Great Recession. He has directed the Treasury secretary to review the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial oversight law, which he has said is a disaster. The law’s aim was to keep banks from repeating practices that many blamed for the financial meltdown.

 Posted by at 12:56 pm
Jan 162016
 

2016 Lincoln Reagan Dinner

Saturday, February 27, 2016
Union County Agricultural & Conference Center

3230 Presson Road, Monroe, NC 28112 | Directions Here

Tickets Available at the door — $65


VIP Reception – 4:00pm
Dinner – 5:00pm
 
Emcee:
NC Senator Tommy Tucker, NC Senate District #35 (Union County)

 

Keynote Speaker:
Ralph Reed, Faith & Freedom Coalition

 

Special Guest Speakers:

Lt. Governor
Dan Forest

Senator
Richard Burr

Senator
Thom Tillis

Congressman
Robert Pittenger

Tickets Available at the door — $65

Tillis Announces New North Carolina Offices

 North Carolina, Politics, U.S. Congress  Comments Off on Tillis Announces New North Carolina Offices
Jul 162015
 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) announced the opening of a new regional office in High Point, NC, and the relocation of his Charlotte, NC, office. The state office expansion is part of Senator Tillis’ ongoing effort to broaden the range of services offered by his staff to North Carolinians in every corner of the state. The new High Point office will serve the integral North Carolina Triad region, and the more centrally located Charlotte office will continue to provide a high standard of constituent services to residents of the greater metro area.

The new High Point and Charlotte offices are in addition to the Senator’s state offices in Raleigh and Greenville. Tillis plans to open an office in Western North Carolina in the near future. Tillis encourages constituents to meet with members of his state staff and utilize his in-state offices to help resolve any issues that they might experience when dealing with the federal agencies and the government.

“I am holding myself responsible to ensure all constituent needs are met and have selected qualified staff in North Carolina and Washington who will work with constituents each and every day,” said Senator Tillis. “Our hard-working staff stands ready and willing to assist with any issue.”

CHARLOTTE OFFICE
9300 Harris Corners Parkway
Suite 170
Charlotte, NC 28269
Phone: (704) 509-9087
charlotte-hq
HIGH POINT OFFICE
1840 Eastchester Dr.
Suite 200
High Point, NC 27265
Phone: (336) 885-0685
highpoint-hq

Congressman Richard Hudson: Statement on Bill that Fails to Block Obama’s Illegal Amnesty

 8th District, Politics, U.S. Congress  Comments Off on Congressman Richard Hudson: Statement on Bill that Fails to Block Obama’s Illegal Amnesty
Mar 032015
 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today U.S. Representative Richard Hudson (NC-08) released the following statement after voting against a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) funding bill stripped of all provisions blocking President Obama’s illegal executive actions on immigration:

“Like my constituents, I am outraged at President Obama’s unlawful actions to unilaterally rewrite our immigration laws and grant amnesty to nearly five million illegal immigrants. I stand firm in my belief that the President is carelessly ignoring the will of the American people and threatening the constitutional foundation of our nation. Just as troubling, the ramifications of his illegal amnesty scheme continue to unfold with the IRS confirming yesterday that illegal immigrants could be eligible to receive social security numbers and billions of tax dollars in benefits.

“It is past time to end these illegal actions and hold President Obama accountable, and today’s measure fails to do that. I refuse to vote to legitimize the President’s illegal actions and grant amnesty and hard-earned tax dollars to illegal immigrants. The fight is not over – I will continue to stand by my promise to do everything in my power to block President Obama’s illegal amnesty.”

In January, Rep. Hudsonvoted for the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act of 2015 (H.R. 240) to fully fund every lawful activity of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for FY2015 and block the President’s unconstitutional executive actions on immigration.

Last Friday, Rep. Hudson voted against two short-term DHS funding bills that kicked the can down the road and failed to block the President’s unconstitutional executive actions on immigration.

Tillis Raises Concerns Over Plan To Dismantle Pope Airfield’s 440th Airlift Wing

 North Carolina, Politics, U.S. Congress  Comments Off on Tillis Raises Concerns Over Plan To Dismantle Pope Airfield’s 440th Airlift Wing
Feb 202015
 
Staff photo by Andrew Craft, Fayetteville Observer

Staff photo by Andrew Craft, Fayetteville Observer

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Following news reports that the Air Force is proceeding with its plans to dismantle the 440th Airlift Wing (AW) at Fort Bragg in violation of a legal mandate to first notify Congress, Senator Tillis raised his objections to such efforts in a letter to Air Force Secretary Debra Lee James, asking her to clarify the extent to which the Air Force has prematurely reduced the mission of the 440th AW.

READ SENATOR TILLIS’ LETTER TO AIR FORCE SECRETARY JAMES.

Tillis highlighted the fact the that the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for 2015 requires the Air Force to issue a report to Congress on the future C-130 force structure and give Congress sixty days to respond to the report’s recommendations. However, the Air Force never delivered the report to Congress, which was due in January, even though it is now implementing its plan to dismantle the 440th AW by removing airmen and even holding an all hands meeting to assist airmen in finding other jobs, contrary to what the law requires.

Earlier this month, Tillis publicly raised the issue of the 440th AW during Defense Secretary Ashton Carter’s confirmation hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee. As Tillis noted in his letter to Secretary James, Dr. Carter responded by committing to a sit-down meeting with Tillis and other members of North Carolina’s Congressional delegation to discuss the future of the 440th AW and other elements of the Air Force’s future C-130 force structure plans.

“Prior to his confirmation I had a lengthy discussion with Secretary Carter about the future of the 440th Airlift Wing at Pope Army Airfield,” wrote Senator Tillis.  “I also raised the issue publicly with the Secretary during his hearing.  He publicly committed to look into the matter and sit down and discuss the 440th‘s future with me. With that in mind I am distressed that in spite of Secretary Carter’s commitment, the Air Force leadership is proceeding to this matter before he has even had time to fulfill his public assurance.”

In the letter, Tillis also raised concerns that the deactivation of the 440th AW would be a tactical and strategic mistake that negatively impacts America’s rapid reaction and Special Forces during national emergencies.

“It essentially takes the ‘air’ out of ‘airborne,’” wrote Senator Tillis. “The removal of the 440th AW at Pope Army Airfield creates unreasonable risks to the readiness of these critical airborne units, many of which must be prepared to respond to a range of contingencies on short notice. Moreover, the anticipated deactivation of the 440th AW would come at a time when the nation is facing growing uncertainty abroad that could require a military response—a response that only forces at Fort Bragg can provide.”

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