One year after taking office, President Donald Trump and his administration have embraced nearly two-thirds of the policy recommendations from The Heritage Foundation’s “Mandate for Leadership.”
The “Mandate for Leadership” series includes five individual publications, totaling approximately 334 unique policy recommendations. Analysis completed by Heritage determined that 64 percent of the policy prescriptions were included in Trump’s budget, implemented through regulatory guidance, or under consideration for action in accordance with The Heritage Foundation’s original proposals.
>>> View the list of all 334 policy recommendations and their status at the one-year mark
“President Trump had an extraordinarily successful first year,” says Thomas Binion, director of congressional and executive branch relations at The Heritage Foundation. “He put a conservative on the Supreme Court and he enacted historic pro-growth tax reform. This analysis demonstrates the lesser-known policy success that his administration has been fighting hard to enact.”
Heritage Foundation research analysts began developing the policy recommendations in 2016 during the presidential campaign with the following principles in mind: free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense.
With approximately 70 former Heritage employees working for the Trump transition team or as part of the administration, the policy recommendations have served as guidelines for reducing the size and scope of the federal government through specific and detailed actions.
The first “Mandate for Leadership” was released in January 1981, containing policy proposals of reform that would make government more efficient and effective. President Ronald Reagan distributed Heritage’s book at his first Cabinet meeting.
“As President Reagan did in the 1980s,” Binion said, “President Trump has embraced the comprehensive recommendations made in the ‘Mandate for Leadership.’ These achievements have led to economic growth, a stronger national defense, and a restoration of the rule of law.”
Over the past several months, Heritage’s executive branch relations staff reviewed the 334 policy recommendations and met with senior administration officials in the several agencies. Heritage analysts briefed administration officials on the recommendations, provided additional insight and information, and advocated for reform.
Examples of some of the most notable policy recommendations and their adoption or implementation by the Trump administration include:
- Leaving the Paris Climate Accord: In August 2017, Trump announced the U.S. was ending its funding and membership in the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
- Repealing Net Neutrality: In December 2017, Trump’s Federal Communications Commission chairman proposed ending the 2015 network neutrality rules.
- Reshaping National Monuments: Heritage’s recommendation to prohibit Land Acquisition (Cap and Reduce the Size of the Federal Estate) was adopted by Trump when he issued two executive orders effectively shrinking the size of national monuments in Utah.
- Reinstating the Mexico City Policy: This executive order prevents taxpayer money from funding international groups involved in abortion and ending funding to the United Nations Population fund. On Jan. 23, 2017, in his first pro-life action, Trump signed an executive order today reinstating the Mexico City Policy.
- Increasing Military Spending: Trump’s budget calls for a $54 billion increase in military spending to improve capacity, capability, and readiness of America’s armed forces.
- Reforming Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program (TANF): The Trump administration adopted and is in favor of strengthening existing work requirements in order to receive benefits.
- Allowing Development of Natural Resources: The Trump administration opened off-shore drilling and on federal lands. Executive Order 13783 directed Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to commence federal land coal leasing activities.
- Reforming Government Agencies: Trump tasked each of his Cabinet secretaries to prepare detailed plans on how they propose to reduce the scope and size of their respective departments while streamlining services and ensuring each department runs more efficiently and handles tax dollars appropriately.
- Withdrawing from UNESCO: In October 2017, Trump announced he was putting an end to U.S. membership in the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
The “Mandate for Leadership” series includes these five publications:
- Blueprint for Reform: A Comprehensive Policy Agenda for a New Administration in 2017
- Blueprint for a New Administration: Priorities for the President
- Blueprint for Reorganization: An Analysis of Federal Departments and Agencies
- Blueprint for Reorganization: Pathways to Reform and Cross-Cutting Issues
- Blueprint for Balance: A Federal Budget for Fiscal Year 2018