Maybe not surprisingly, President Trump had a busy–and controversial–first week in office. Here, we take a look at a few of his actions that are receiving the most attention.
Affordable Care Act
Just hours after being sworn in as president, Trump signed his first executive order, declaring that government agencies no longer have to enforce the provisions of the Affordable Care Act, or “Obamacare.” This could allow parts of the ACA to be effectively dismantled before any Republican replacement plan is ready. Such quick action might threaten the health care of millions of Americans.
Despite no real evidence of voter fraud, Trump declared that he would have won the popular vote if it hadn’t been for the millions who voted illegally against him, and said that he planned to launch an investigation into voter fraud.
The Global Gag Rule
Three days after becoming president, Trump signed an executive order banning overseas funding to groups that provide abortions or abortion referrals. The ban applies to all U.S. global health funding, forcing overseas groups to either comply with the order or face loss of U.S. financial support.
Trump also signed executive orders regarding the controversial Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines. The pipelines were strongly opposed by environmentalists and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, and as a result, their construction was halted during the Obama administration. However, Trump’s order means that the pipeline owners can reapply for construction permits. The Standing Rock Sioux have said that they will take legal action to fight the decision.
Trump declared his intention to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a trade agreement between the United States and Asia that was never actually ratified by Congress. He also voiced plans to renegotiate, or possibly end, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between the United States and Mexico.
Immigration and Border Control
Also during his first week, Trump signed executive orders to begin construction on the wall along the US-Mexican border that he had promised during his campaign, despite the fact that there is no clear plan about who will foot the $12 to $15 billion bill for it. Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto, who opposes the wall and has vocally refused to pay for it, immediately cancelled a planned meeting with Trump.
Though the two later spoke on the phone, little was resolved. Furthermore, Trump’s executive order on immigration suspended all refugee admissions for 120 days, blocked all Syrian refugees indefinitely, and blocked citizens from seven Muslim nations from entering the U.S. for 90 days. Immediately unpopular, the immigration ban drew criticism from both parties in Congress, while demonstrators filled airport terminals in protest.