As the Trump team contemplates relocation to Washington it isn’t too early to look ahead to some of the changes he would institute.
While it is not possible to foresee all of them since the programs and solutions under a Trump Administration have yet to be revealed, and a few might not survive constitutional challenge, we already have some glimmers.
So here’s a peek at what’s likely to take place in the first 100 days:
Of course the first thing all new White House occupants do is to redecorate and renovate various rooms reflecting their personal tastes. As a legendary hotel and casino builder, Trump is likely to have some strong ideas.
The Oval office admittedly has some history behind it, but the furnishings and art objects smack of eras past that have little correlation to the grandeur of some of Trump’s greatest edifices.
The desk used by the current president known as the H.M.S. Resolute is made of timbers from the British ship by that name and was a gift to President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1880 from Queen Victoria.
With the exception of Presidents Johnson, Nixon, Ford and the senior Bush, every person to hold the office has sat behind this iconic relic including the incumbent.
If Trump pursues his interest in reality shows as the best means of communicating with the public, the desk might have to be put in storage along with other pass-me-downs to make room for a digitalized sound stage and permanent cameras.
This would be a boon to the mainstream TV, cable networks and social media who will have more material to work with than ever before. While state-run media is probably still years away, a spin room which could be easily erected in the East Wing might make that unnecessary.
One of the iconic statues in the Oval Office is the bust of Martin Luther King, Jr. by African-American sculptor Charles Alston.
The plights of minorities and especially immigrants is not brought up much by Trump except when he references walling them off or throwing them out en masse. His often articulated belief until recently that President Obama, the nation’s first black leader, has been posing as a U.S. citizen suggests that the Reverend King’s statue may also be destined for the basement.
A wall hanging which will also probably have to go is a framed program of the 1963 “March on Washington” ending with King’s momentous “I have a Dream” speech.
Some spaces have been periodically reconfigured to accommodate the recreational whims of the occupants such as the gym which was converted partly from a tennis court into a basketball court at Obama’s request.
Trump is an avid golfer who considers exercise a “waste of time that could kill you.” Since installation of an 18-hole golf course is a non-starter without annexing a portion of Constitution Avenue a stylish casino of modest size could be appealing to many distinguished visitors.
The first dignitary who might be invited to try out the black jack table could be Russian Premier, Vladimir Putin, who Trump has called a “strong leader,” and has held up as role model.
The famous Lincoln Bedroom and accompanying guest quarters which over the years have undergone extensive face lifts are furnished in a mix of Victorian styles including Renaissance and Rococo Revival.
But they are no match for the opulence of Trump’s Park Avenue apartment mansion atop Trump Towers which is outfitted in 24k gold trimmings and marble in Louis XIV style.
The Lincoln Bedroom might have to be preserved but a more fashionable and updated Trump Royal Suites with accompanying mineral baths could be a bigger attraction.
While it is customary that presidents leave office before their official photographs are displayed, Trump, who has been known to flout tradition, might want to have his own affixed immediately somewhere in the East Wing with a great wall to support it.
The White House exterior, however, is considered all but sacrosanct and any plans for major renovations such as installing the emblematic Trump properties signage could meet with resistance.
One exception might be the removal once again of the 34 solar panels which Obama had reinstalled after they were ordered taken down by President Reagan in 1981 before renewable energy became popular. After Trump’s celebrated tweet that “climate change is a hoax invented by the Chinese,” this could demonstrate for other believers that he does not intend to waffle on the subject.
Although these cosmetic innovations might raise some eyebrows, they are not central to Trump’s vision.
- Construction of the Mexican Wall—the first order of business—would pose daunting challenges assuming Congress went along. One of the first would be the permits that it would require from the EPA which Trump has suggested be eliminated.
Another tricky question concerns the make-up of the labor force that would want to do the job. One obvious source of employment are Mexicans who might want to extract promises that they will not end up on the other side of the wall once it’s completed.
- The good news is that since the Mexicans will be paying for it the budgetary hit will be minimal. To smooth any hard feelings and as a patriotic gesture, Trump could ask the IRS to work up a $1 Good Neighbor deduction on all U.S. tax returns for those wishing to contribute to the Wall.
- Deportation centers would take priority over Daycare Centers with undesirables being shown the door faster than it took him to twitter, “Happy Cinco de Mayo! The best taco bowls are made in Trump Tower Grill. I love Hispanics!” Funniest Donald Trump Memes.
- With sweeping arrests to be expected in many communities harboring record numbers of people, particularly of Muslim faith, suspected of involvement in unsavory activities, prisons will have to be expanded or additional ones built to accommodate the overloads as a new era of law and order kicks in.
- Gun control measures requiring tougher deregulation will be instituted with mandatory training recommended for all elementary and high school teachers before they can wear arms in classrooms. Trustworthy students with no prior criminal records could also be included subject to parental consent.
- With a new champion in the White House the NRA movement to eliminate gun-free zones could take on some real steam with stepped up “stop-and-frisk” policing especially in minority communities.
- Federal job aspirants who do not meet rigorous beauty standards would be discouraged from seeking employment and less endowed women would be banned from White House functions.
- Supreme Court applicants would be vetted initially by a new Panel on Judicial Readiness composed of N.J. Gov. Chris Christie (the presumptive choice for AG), a few top campaign donors, the president’s wife and two respected figures in law enforcement preferably from Texas and Indiana.
- The White House Press Corps would be asked to submit all questions in advance of press briefings in accordance with a list of designated reporters with acceptable credentials.
- Individuals with questionable political or religious affiliations would have to be prohibited from taking White House tours.
- To avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest Trump’s vast real estate holdings and investments will doubtless have to be put in a blind trust administered by his daughters and sons who will not be permitted to consult with him regarding any business decisions. Of course to avoid any image of impropriety, visits to any of his properties even if only for recreational purposes might attract scrutiny from the Justice Department and the IRS unless Trump simply rules this out by Executive Order.
- The good news is that with so many lodging choices, presidential vacation retreats could multiply throughout his presidency and with such a huge staff the cost savings to the government for maintenance and upkeep could be considerable.
There are other things that Trump supporters can cheer about, but these are pretty good for starters.