In 2016, the US had its most controversial presidential candidate win 306 seats of the electoral college. Donald Trump had made very sweeping promises to the American people but as his first term has drawn to a close, what will Trump’s presidential legacy be? I think this question depends very heavily on who you ask – if you ask a loyal Trump supporter they will look back on his presidency as a time of success. Democrats will provide a harsher view to what Trump’s presidential legacy will be. Let’s look at Trump’s successes throughout his presidency.
Make America Great
Again, was Trump’s declaration at the start of his term, and here are a few of
his administrations accomplishments.
administration will have a lasting impact on the federal judiciary (responsible
for interpreting and enforcing laws). Having placed three Supreme Court
justices and 220 judges to the federal branch, these appointments will be
for life and will shape the country for decades to come. Appointing the high
number of Supreme Court Justices and judges is, of course, a success for Trump
but for people who oppose the Trump administration, the lasting impact of these
judges is worrying.
introduced the most radical reform to tax in thirty years. The reform saw the
taxation of corporations reduced to 21%. The only success of this tax reform is
for corporations; arguably, this taxation burdens the American middle class.
Thirdly, it is no
surprise that the criminal justice system in America requires reform. With
millions affected by the deeply flawed system, Trump’s administration has
advocated for reform of the system with the First Step Act. There is still a
long way to go, but the bill itself represents a first step to making changes.
Despite these limited
successes, Trump’s administration has failed in many areas.
Trump’s legacy will be judged by his handling of COVID-19. The US notoriously
has the worst outbreak in the world, with 16.8million cases and deaths nearing
half a million. With many frustrated at his handling of the pandemic and
his tweets concerning the “invisible Chinese virus.” His suggestions
have included using bleach to kill the virus once injected and to stop the
widespread testing for the virus. Trump’s comments surrounding the virus have
spurred the spread of fake news and has many doubting its very existence. The
rush of fake news has led many to rebel against face coverings and compliance
with COVID-19 restrictions.
During the 2016
campaign, the Trump agenda was branded by his harsh opinion on immigrants.
Trump’s xenophobic rhetoric can be found first in his tweets: “They’re
bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume,
are good people.” His immigration policy has always been harsh, resulting
in many family separations. This aggressive policy has led to many
unaccompanied children in ICE facilities.
The US economy is
facing a disastrous crisis; it is unfair to blame it all on Trump, the global
pandemic has had an awful impact on the economy closer to home too. However,
Trump’s inability to implement rigorous Covid-19 procedures has led to roughly
22 million jobs being lost and the national debt reaching its highest level
legacy is like a coin. For many, his term as president will be seen as a
time of harsh policies against immigrants, a time where white supremacy took
centre stage, scandalous headlines littered with his tweets. These past four
years have been characterised by the increase of white supremacy groups and the
unpredictable nature of President Trump. Under the banner of Make America
Great Again, minorities were further marginalised, pushed further into the
margins yet had their voices heard as people and corporations became more
politically conscious. People who opposed Trump began to fight harder than they
ever had, turning out in droves to vote him out.
For the supporters
who follow Trump, these years have been the best. Having the opportunity to be
represented and have enjoyed the benefits of his policies. However, everyone
has suffered together under the mishandling of Covid-19 and the state of the
He has perplexed and
angered many in his nation and those anticipating what Trump will do next. I
think many can breathe out a sigh of relief that a nuclear war has not broken
out during these past four years. With the good and the bad of Trump’s
presidency affecting our future, it is now time to look towards the Biden and
Harris administration. How will they move the American nation forward whilst
fighting the permanence of Trump’s action?