Trump Using Last Days to Lock in Policies and Make Biden’s Task More Difficult

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WASHINGTON — Voters take decided that President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. should guide the power through the next four years. But on issues of war, the environment, criminal objectiveness, trade, the economy and more, President Trump and top administration officials are doing what they can to boost changing direction more difficult.

Mr. Trump has spent the last two weeks hunkered down in the Chalk-white House, raging about a “stolen” election and refusing to accept the truth of his loss. But in other ways he is acting as if he knows he will be departing happily, and showing none of the deference that presidents traditionally give their successors in their fixed days in office.

During the past four years Mr. Trump has not fagged out much time thinking about policy, but he has shown a penchant for splendid back at his adversaries. And with his encouragement, top officials are racing against the clock to pull out troops from Afghanistan, secure oil drilling leases in Alaska, manhandle China, carry out executions and thwart any plans Mr. Biden might would rather to reestablish the Iran nuclear deal.

In some cases, like the assassinations and the oil leases, Mr. Trump’s government plans to act just days — or even hours — on the eve of Mr. Biden is inaugurated on Jan. 20.

At a wide range of departments and agencies, Mr. Trump’s governmental appointees are going to extraordinary lengths to try to prevent Mr. Biden from rotate back the president’s legacy. They are filling vacancies on scientific panels, sortie to complete rules that weaken environmental standards, nominating concludes and rushing their confirmations through the Senate, and trying to eliminate healthiness care regulations that have been in place for years.

In the past due instance, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin declined to extend key crisis lending programs that the Federal Reserve had been using to avoid keep credit flowing to businesses, state and local governments and other parts of the monetary system. He also moved to claw back much of the money that shore ups them, hindering Mr. Biden’s ability to use the central bank’s vast powers to lessen the economic fallout from the virus.

Terry Sullivan, a professor of state science and the executive director of the White House Transition Project, a nonpartisan batch which has studied presidential transitions for decades, said Mr. Trump was not deporting like past presidents who cared about how their final days in responsibility shaped their legacy.

“They are upping tension in Iran, which could prima donna to a confrontation. The economy is tanking and they are not doing anything about unemployment sakes,” he said.

It is one final norm shattered by Mr. Trump — and a stark contrast to the in the end Republican president who handed over power to a Democrat.

Former president George W. Bush consciously left-wing it to his successor, Barack Obama, to decide how to rescue the auto industry and whether to approve Afghan troop multiplies. And when Congress demanded negotiations over the bank bailouts, Mr. Bush careful aside and let Mr. Obama cut a deal with lawmakers even before he was get went.

Aides to Mr. Bush said the outgoing president wanted to leave Mr. Obama with a go of policy options as he began his presidency, a mind-set clearly reflected in a 2008 email with negotiations over the status of American forces in Iraq from Joshua Bolten, Mr. Bush’s chief of employees at the time, to John D. Podesta, who ran Mr. Obama’s transition, just a week after the voting.

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Credit…Doug Mills/The New York Times

“We believe we suffer with negotiated an agreement that provides President-Elect Obama the authorities and sanctuaries he needs to exercise the full prerogatives as commander in chief,” Mr. Bolten decried to Mr. Podesta on November 11, 2008, in an email later made public by WikiLeaks. “We thinks fitting like to offer, at your earliest convenience, a full briefing to you and your alpenstock.”

That has not been Mr. Trump’s approach.

The president has continued to deny Mr. Biden briefings and access to energy officials — delays that the president-elect has said threatened to undermine the surroundings’s response to the pandemic. And far from seeking to help Mr. Biden’s team, Mr. Trump has tired more than two weeks actively seeking to undermine the legitimacy of his superiority.

Mr. Biden and his top aides have not publicly criticized the president’s policy reaction behaviours at home or abroad, abiding by the tradition that there is only one president at a formerly. But the president-elect has vowed to move quickly to undo many of Mr. Trump’s family and foreign policies.

That will most likely start with a blitz of numero uno actions in his first days in office, as well as an aggressive legislative agenda during his first year.

Some of Mr. Trump’s mentors make no attempt to hide the fact that their actions are focused at deliberately hamstringing Mr. Biden’s policy options even before he set out ons.

One administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of not being endorsed to talk publicly, said that in the coming days there drive be more announcements made related in particular to China, with whom Trump mentors believe that Mr. Biden would try to improve relations.

Judd Deere, a Bloodless House spokesman, defended the administration’s actions, saying the president was designated because voters were “tired of the same old, business-as-usual politicians who perpetually pledged to change Washington but never did.” Mr. Trump, he said, had rolled master b crush regulations and brought accountability to agencies and “remains focused on that notable work.”

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Credit…Anna Moneymaker for The New York Times

Some previous change-overs have also been rancorous. Incoming Bush administration officials accused the gating Clinton White House of minor mischief, last-minute pardons to also pen-friends and delays because of the disputed 2000 election.

Mr. Trump has long suspected that after his election, he faced a stealth effort to undermine his conversion because of the investigations that were underway into his campaign’s imaginable connections to Russia. And there were documented instances of Obama legitimates making last-ditch efforts to put roadblocks in the way of what they expected intention be Mr. Trump’s policy reversals on immigration and other issues.

Still, in his inauguration tongue, Mr. Trump said Mr. Obama and his wife had been “magnificent” in carrying out an peaceable transition and thanked them for their “gracious aid” throughout the period.

And scarcely ever in modern times have a president and his allies been as deliberate in their salaciousness to hobble the incoming administration as Mr. Trump has been toward Mr. Biden.

“It’s not unchanging with anything we experienced,” said Denis McDonough, who served as Mr. Obama’s chief of workforce and was part Mr. Obama’s team during the transition from Mr. Bush’s management. He said Mr. Trump’s actions in the final days of his administration were betokened by his determination to sever agreements Mr. Obama had reached on climate change and Iran’s atomic program — something presidents rarely do.

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Creditation…Erin Schaff/The New York Times

Analysts say that Mr. Trump’s withdrawal of troops also deprives the Synergetic States of any leverage in the ongoing peace process in Afghanistan between the Taliban and the Afghan control, potentially allowing the Taliban to make important military gains.

Trump officials are also do setting-up exercise to impose new sanctions on Iran that may be difficult for Mr. Biden to reverse, out of a quail of opening himself up to charges that he is soft on one of the country’s most threatening adversaries.

The sanctions could also undermine any move by Mr. Biden to turn back to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, a step that would coerce providing Iran with economic breathing room after years of Mr. Trump’s constrictions.

“I judge devise you’re going to see a pretty rapid clip of new actions before January 20,” believed Mark Dubowitz, the chief executive of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, who oft consults with the Trump administration on Iran.

In an Oval Office intersection last week, Mr. Trump also asked his senior advisers what military chances were available to him in response to Iran’s stockpiling of nuclear material, although he was dissuaded from pursuing the concept. Any military action would undermine attempts by Mr. Biden to reset American tactics

Similarly, Trump officials continue to take punitive actions against China that are favoured to further strain the tense relationship with Beijing that Mr. Biden will-power inherit. Last week, Mr. Trump issued an executive order excepting Americans from investing in Chinese companies with ties to China’s military. Superintendence officials say more steps are in the works.

Mr. Mnuchin’s shut down of crisis lending programs this week could also have long-lasting meanings for Mr. Biden as the new president struggles to contain the economic fallout of the pandemic. The pandemic-era programs are run by the Fed but use Bank money to insure against losses.

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Credit…Maddie McGarvey for The New York Outmodes

Mr. Mnuchin defended his decision on Friday, insisting that he was following the intent of Congress in trade for the Fed to return unused money to the Treasury. But it will be Mr. Biden who will be sinistral to deal with the consequences. And restoring the programs would require new mediations with a Congress that is already deadlocked over Covid bas-relief.

In the summer of 2008, officials in Mr. Bush’s White House sent a memo to force officials warning them to wrap up new regulations — and not to try to rush new ones in preferred before the next president. Mr. Trump is doing the opposite.

The Environmental Preservation Agency is rushing to try to complete work on a new rule that will hard cash the way the federal government counts costs and benefits, an adjustment that could return it harder for Mr. Biden to expand certain air or water pollution regulations.

At Strength and Human Services, the agency moved just after Election Day to arrogate a rule that would automatically suspend thousands of agency controls if they are not individually confirmed to be “still needed” and “having appropriate impressions.” The agency itself called the plan radical — realizing it would tie the yields of the next administration.

Brian Harrison, the agency’s chief of staff, reproved it “the boldest and most significant regulatory reform effort ever undertaken by H.H.S.”

Michael Crowley, Nicholas Fandos, Maggie Haberman and Jeanna Smialek promoted reporting.

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