White House

Jacob Orgel | Contributor

No matter what side of the political spectrum you fall on, it is indisputable that President Donald Trump has ushered in a new era of U.S. politics.

From a new means of diplomatic relations to a new approach to foreign policy, nearly the entire narrative surrounding the 45th president comes with the tag of “unprecedented.”

However, Trump is not the first White House occupant to do things his own way or to generate public outcry over his actions. Over time, it is easy to forget just how outlandish some of his predecessors’ behaviors might have seemed to the general public during their tenures in office.

We have compiled a list of the 10 craziest moves presidents have made before Trump took office. Read on to learn about the long tradition of wild things that commanders-in-chief have done.

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Source: The Daily Caller

Jason Hopkins | Energy Investigator

The Trump administration is preparing to trim its budget by closing down numerous immigration offices around the world, a move that will likely make it harder for foreign nationals to relocate to the United States.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will shutter nearly two dozen international field offices in the coming months “in an effort to maximize our agency’s finite resources,” according to an email from USCIS Director L. Francis Cissna that was sent to staffers on Tuesday. Services currently being performed by the nearly two dozen offices abroad will instead be transferred to domestic offices and the State Department’s consulates and embassies.

A cost analysis by USCIS officials in 2018 found that a phase out of its international offices would save the agency millions per year.

“I believe by doing so, we will better leverage our funds to address backlogs in the United States while also leveraging existing Department of State resources at post,” Cissna wrote in the email, obtained by The Washington Post. “Change can be difficult and can cause consternation. I want to assure you we will work to make this as smooth a transition as possible for each of our USCIS staff while also ensuring that those utilizing our services may continue to do so and our agency operations continue undisrupted.”

However, immigration activists are claiming this is simply the latest move by the Trump administration to restrict immigration into the country. Closing international field offices, they argue, would slow family visa applications, refugee processing and other immigrant applications.

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Director L. Francis Cissna speaks about the Bangladeshi suspect in Monday’s attempted suicide bombing in New York during a press briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S., December 12, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

“This is another instance of the Trump administration halting legal immigration by denying people the opportunity to file for immigration benefits in the most expedient manner,” stated immigration attorney Margaret Stock. “It’s going to smack all government employees abroad, including folks in the military, who have a foreign spouse or kids they are trying to bring to the U.S. legally.” (RELATED: ICE Officers Giving Up On Trump Over Catch And Release)

The international division of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services operates in over 20 different countries. The agency’s offices perform a number of duties, such as helping potential U.S. immigrants with their applications, aiding immigrants who misplaced their green cards, and work on immigration petitions.

The USCIS, however, contends that the move to shutter its international division and shift responsibilities to U.S. offices is strictly a cost-saving and streamlining measure.

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Jason Hopkins | Energy Investigator

Key members of the Trump administration are divided over legislation that would authorize the U.S. government to sue OPEC countries for oil price manipulation.

There is growing bipartisan support in Congress to prevent, and punish, members of OPEC from coordinating oil production. The House Judiciary Committee in February passed the No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act, more popularly known as NOPEC, clearing the way for a vote on the House floor. Republican and Democratic lawmakers have also introduced NOPEC legislation in the Senate.

If passed, the bills would make it illegal for foreign governments to work together to manipulate fossil fuel prices, and it would allow the Department of Justice to sue oil producers violating antitrust laws by eliminating immunity protections given to foreign actors.

NOPEC bills has been proposed several times in Congress over the years, but have ultimately failed in the face of veto threats from former presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. Both presidents believed the legislation would tarnish relationships with OPEC countries and put U.S. companies’ overseas investments at risk.

However, things could be different under the current administration.

Trump has been a consistent critic of OPEC, blasting the 14-member organization on social media for keeping international oil prices artificially high. The Republican president used his Twitter handle to attack OPEC numerous times in 2018, but he has not tweeted about them since Saudi Arabia — the undisputed leader of the oil cartel — defied his demands and cut production in December.

The president has also spoken out in favor of suing OPEC in the past. In his 2011 book, “Time to Get Tough,” Trump explicitly endorsed NOPEC legislation and called for the U.S. government to sue OPEC countries for “violating antitrust laws.”

“The United States is firmly committed to open, fair, and competitive markets for global energy trade. We do not support market-distorting behavior, including cartels,” a senior Trump official stated in February, indicating White House support for NOPEC legislation.

OPEC. Shutterstock

Oil pipe line valve in front of the barrels with OPEC symbol. Shutterstock

Not everyone in the administration appears to be on board with NOPEC.

“We need to be really careful before we pass legislation that may have an impact that goes way past its intended consequences,” Energy Secretary Rick Perry said during a press conference in February, cautioning that such legislation could cause long-term spikes in oil price. (RELATED: ‘Bunch Of Kids’ — Rick Perry Takes Green New Deal Backers To School)

A senior Trump administration official told Axios in a Monday report that the White House has not officially taken a position on NOPEC.

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Jason Hopkins | Energy Investigator

The Trump administration is mulling the creation of an expert panel to assess whether climate change poses a risk to national security, but critics are denouncing the idea.

The White House may form the Presidential Committee on Climate Security to determine if global warming is a threat to national security, according to documents reviewed by The Washington Post. The committee, which would be initiated under an executive order, would be led by National Security Council senior director William Happer.

While a growing number of Democratic politicians view climate change as an existential threat, the Trump administration has disregarded the issue as a major cause for concern. The Presidential Committee on Climate Security would likely reach similar conclusions given that Happer has previously touted the benefits of carbon emissions and has sat on the board of two different advocacy groups that question the dangers of global warming: the CO2 Coalition and the George C. Marshall Institute.

“I like to call this the CO2 anti-defamation league because there is the CO2 molecule, and it has undergone decade after decade of abuse, for no reason,” Happer said of his CO2 Coalition group during a presentation in 2016.

“We’re doing our best to try and counter this myth that CO2 is a dangerous pollutant,” he continued. “It’s not a pollutant at all. … We should be telling the scientific truth, that more CO2 is actually a benefit to the earth.”

The panel is already drawing objections from environmental advocates. The co-founder of the Center for Climate and Security, Francesco Femia, claims the committee will be used to undermine the scientific consensus that climate change will lead to dire consequences.

“This is the equivalent of setting up a committee on nuclear weapons proliferation and having someone lead it who doesn’t think nuclear weapons exist,” Femia said to The Washington Post. “It’s honestly a blunt force political tool designed to shut the national security community up on climate change.”

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at El Paso County Coliseum in El Paso

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at El Paso County Coliseum in El Paso, Texas, U.S., Feb. 11, 2019. REUTERS/Leah Millis

The White House has long drawn ire from environmental advocates. Since the beginning on his administration, President Donald Trump has led an ambitious rollback of Obama-era environmental regulations in an effort to revitalize the country’s energy industry. This “energy dominance” agenda has led to an enormous amount of environmentally oriented lawsuits against the administration. One green group alone has filed over 100 lawsuits against the White House.

Nevertheless, energy advocates that have long praised the White House’s energy agenda are hailing the new committee.

“It’s a great idea, spearheaded by a great guy,” Steve Milloy, a policy adviser for the Heartland Institute, said of the Presidential Committee on Climate Security. “Sounds like the dishonest-know-nothing climate bedwetters in the national security apparatus — as well as those across the federal government — are about to get schooled in CO2 reality.”

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Tim Pearce | Energy Reporter

Women are earning four-year college degrees at a higher rate but working at a rate significantly lower than men in the U.S., Axios reports.

Adults in the U.S. are overall more educated now than at any other point in history, with 34.6 percent of women and 33.7 percent of men holding four-year college degrees. In workforce participation, men still have a substantial edge on women 69.2 percent to 56.9 percent, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

Men with a bachelor’s, master’s or professional degree are more likely to be working than women with the same level of education, Axios reports. (RELATED: Prime-Age Labor Force Dropouts May Never Return To Work, Fed Paper Says)

Men are more likely to begin working sooner and work longer hours than women. According to a December 2018 Harvard study, the gender pay gap between men and women is due to men’s greater willingness to work overtime at higher wages. Women value a safer and more predictable schedule.

The percentage of women in the workplace has declined alongside men for several years, worrying experts that declining workforce participation will worsen growing deficits in Social Security and Medicare. The Baby Boomer generation, which propped both programs up when they were founded, is now retiring and placing greater financial strain on the systems.

U.S. President Donald Trump listens as his daughter, White House senior adviser Ivanka Trump, speaks during a campaign rally on the eve of the U.S. midterm election in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., November 5, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

U.S. President Donald Trump listens as his daughter, White House senior adviser Ivanka Trump, speaks during a campaign rally on the eve of the U.S. midterm election in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., November 5, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

In 1985, the United States ranked second in women participation in the workforce. By 2016, the U.S. was ranked ninth, passed by countries such as France, Japan and the United Kingdom, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The IMF report attributed the trend to European policies that guarantee women more flexibility with longer maternity leave and greater access to childcare.

Ivanka Trump is leading a White House effort to adopt similar polices in the U.S. She met with lawmakers Wednesday to discuss potential legislation to be introduced to Congress, pushing paid family leave policies.

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Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Source: The Daily Caller


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