United States: Inauguration Day 2017: President Donald Trump

Last Updated: January 23 2017
Article by Harold P. Coxson

One year ago, few people outside of candidate Donald Trump and his closest and most loyal supporters imagined that January 20, 2017, would mark his inauguration as the 45th president of the United States. Regardless, today an estimated 800,000–900,000 people were on hand to witness his inauguration on the west front steps of the U.S. Capitol. As is the tradition, the new president was sworn in by the chief justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, with Donald Trump repeating the 37-word, constitutionally mandated oath of office administered by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. There then followed the traditional rendition of "Ruffles and Flourishes" and the first "Hail to the Chief" for President Trump, as well as the howitzers of the 3rd U.S. Infantry's 21-round gun salute while the First Lady and other members of the Trump family looked on.

Meanwhile, some remained dissatisfied with the election results—in which Trump won a wide majority of votes cast in the Electoral College (301–237) but lost the popular vote by over three million votes. Those perspectives were reflected by thousands of demonstrators in inauguration marches in Washington, D.C. and elsewhere around the country.

Despite the protests, on January 20, Donald John Trump became the new president of the United States, along with Vice President Mike Pence, and the Trump era was launched.

His relatively brief inaugural address—20 minutes—written by his own hand, lacked the rhetorical flourishes of the most memorable lines from several of his predecessors.

For a president with a national popularity rating of 40 percent, according to a recent poll—the lowest rating of any new president on Inauguration Day over the past six most recent presidents—President Trump's call for national unity was an important message to deliver, especially in the face of impending change.

In this regard, President Trump used expressions in his inaugural speech such as "always pursue solidarity" and "We share one heart, one home, and one glorious destiny." Yet essentially, it was a speech that mirrored his campaign speeches calling to "Make America great again." Perhaps the most memorable line was,

From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land. From this day forward, it's going to be only America first, America first.

The Trump White House

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence plan to advance a conservative domestic social and fiscal policy agenda from the White House, and to redefine global relationships with our trading partners, foreign governments, and international organizations. President Trump has promised to quickly overturn President Obama's executive orders and regulations, as well as repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, which was passed by a strictly partisan congressional vote with no Republicans voting in favor. President Trump also enjoys a Senate Republican majority to confirm his Cabinet nominees, although confirmation of some may face difficulty. However, Senate confirmation of his choice for the Supreme Court of the United States will be more difficult since, unlike lower federal circuit court judges and administration appointments that cannot be filibustered and only require a simple 51-vote majority to confirm, Supreme Court nominees require 60 votes to overcome a threatened Senate filibuster.

The Republican Congress—Critical to Trump's Agenda

The Trump era will rely on a Republican-controlled Congress to advance its agenda. Republicans enjoy majorities in both Houses of Congress, albeit by slimmer margins than the 114th Congress. In the new 115th Congress (2017-2018), Senate Republicans hold 52 seats versus 46 Democrats and 2 Independents who caucus with the Democrats, which is 2 fewer Republicans than in the 114th Congress. The slim 52-vote majority makes Senate Republicans susceptible to a 60-vote super-majority vote necessary to invoke cloture to end a legislative filibuster blocking the Trump agenda. In the House the margin is 241 Republicans versus 194 Democrats, which includes 6 fewer Republicans than there were in the 114th Congress but more than sufficient to move the Trump agenda.

What is the Trump Agenda?

President Trump's Inaugural Address echoed themes he had sounded over the course of his candidacy. Key excerpts from his speech reflect his priorities:

  • "We assembled here today are issuing a new decree to be heard in every city, in every foreign capital, and in every hall of power. From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land. From this day forward, it's going to be only America first. America first."
  • "What truly matters is not which party controls our government but whether our government is controlled by the people."
  • "January 20th, 2017 will be remembered as the day the people became rulers of this nation again."
  • "When you open your heart to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice."
  • "A new national pride will stir our souls, lift our sights and heal our divisions."

First 100 Days

On the first day, the Senate—as expected—confirmed two of President Trump's Cabinet nominees: retired United States Marine Corps general, James "Mad Dog" Mattis as Secretary of Defense and retired Marine General John Kelly as Secretary of Homeland Security.

Although President Trump will take executive actions on Inauguration Day following his swearing in, he has stated that he considers his "first day" to be Monday, January 23.

President Trump's first 100 days in office are likely to include a laser-beam focus on:

  • confirming his Cabinet and sub-Cabinet nominees;
  • repealing the Affordable Care Act (or "Obamacare") and replacing it with a slimmed-down version;
  • overturning most, if not all, of President Obama's executive orders and instructing the Trump Executive Branch agency heads to undo Obama regulations by reverse rulemaking or by withdrawing their agencies' legal defenses of such regulations before the federal appellate courts where they have been enjoined permanently (e.g., the persuader rule) or preliminarily (e.g., the government contractor "blacklisting" rule);
  • redesignating the chairs of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), and filling vacancies in those two agencies;
  • nominating a new Supreme Court justice and candidates for the lower federal circuit courts of appeals;
  • beginning work on immigration policy, infrastructure, tax reform, and trade policy; and
  • negotiating a spending bill to fund the federal government before the continuing resolution expires in April 2017.

How Might Labor and Employment Policy Change Under President Trump?

Under President Trump, expect a significant reversal of Obama labor and employment policies at the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), NLRB, and the EEOC.

Traditional Labor. In terms of labor policy, for example, a recent study concluded that over 4,559 years of judicial precedent was overturned in eight years by the Obama Board in favor of pro-union policies. Expect gradual reversal of many of those decisions by a new Trump Board. Reversals will be slowed, however, by the need for a "live" case (the NLRB is not permitted to issue advisory opinions) and by incumbent pro-union Democratic General Counsel Richard Griffin, whose term expires in November of 2017.

Joint-Employer. Also, expect reversal of the Obama policy on "joint-employer" status, which saddles franchisors with the collective bargaining obligations and labor law violations of their franchisees. The ubiquitous Obama joint-employer standard has been developing government-wide by the NLRB (in its Browning-Ferris Industries decision) as well as by the DOL's Wage and Hour Division and Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and by the EEOC. Business groups argue that the joint-employer standard would destroy the franchise model. We can likely expect the Trump administration to move quickly to reverse these joint-employer policies, especially if the chief executive officer of CKE Restaurants, Andy Puzder is confirmed as Secretary of Labor.

Wage and Hour Issues. On issues such as the "salary basis" for the Fair Labor Standards Act's overtime exemption for white collar employees (executive, administrative, or professional employees), and the minimum wage, expect the Trump administration to propose significantly lower increases than those proposed by President Obama. Similarly, expect Trump to advance some version of a federal paid family leave law, although without some of the provisions previously advocated.

Executive Orders. On issues like "government contractor blacklisting" (Executive Order 13673, "Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces" and its implementing regulations and DOL guidance), President Trump has promised to quickly rescind the executive order, perhaps on his first day in office. The same is true with Obama's other labor and employment executive orders starting with those from the first days of the Obama presidency.

Persuader Rule. As for the "persuader" regulations, expect Trump to instruct his Justice Department and Department of Labor to withdraw their appeals in the Fifth Circuit of the permanent injunction granted by a federal district court in Texas. The same is true of the appeal of a preliminary injunction of the Labor Department's overtime regulation entered by another federal district court in Texas. By withdrawing from the litigation, the Trump administration would effectively end those regulations without going through a burdensome and time-consuming reverse rule making.

Immigration. In addition to reversing and replacing Obamacare and rescinding other Obama labor and employment executive orders and regulations, immigration reform is a high priority for the Trump administration. Under President Trump, immigration policy will focus on boarder security, restrictions on entry, and deportation of undocumented aliens.

Court Vacancies. Finally, the composition of federal courts, including the Supreme Court of the United States, is important to labor and employment policy. Filling the vacancy on the Supreme Court, and the 100 vacancies in the lower federal courts, will be a priority. Currently, for example, only the Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth Circuits retain majorities appointed by Republican presidents. Now, after the "nuclear option" was rammed through the Senate by then-Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), it is possible that the Senate confirmation of judicial appointments will not be filibustered and will only require a simple 51-vote majority. We can likely expect President Trump to move quickly to fill those vacancies.

Post-Inauguration Day 2017: The Trump Era Begins

The next four years potentially will bring dramatic changes in domestic and foreign policy. One of the most significant changes likely will be in labor and employment policy. As with all of his predecessors throughout U.S. history, President Trump enters the White House hoping to bring about change. Time will tell.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

In association with
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of www.mondaq.com

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.