President Trump often touts his Electoral College victory as a symbol of his mandate to change Washington. His road to the White House was made possible by winning midwestern and industrial states such as Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and my home state of Ohio. The voters of the Rust Belt entrusted Trump with their hopes for a better economic future.
On the trail, Trump would often make grand promises to cheering crowds that were enveloped by a sense of hope that their frustrations were finally being heard. If Trump were to become president, he promised to repeal NAFTA, label China a currency manipulator, and stop steel dumping. Oh, and he would also bring back coal jobs.
Trump has occupied the White House for almost 200 days, and he's failed to take much action on these promises.
Instead of an economic revival in the industrial midwest, there are signs of stagnation or decline.
Remember those Carrier factory jobs famously saved by Trump and Pence before taking the oath of office? About 600 of those jobs are still moving from Indiana to Mexico.
What about bringing back coal jobs? In 2017 alone, 14 coal-fired power plants are slated for closure, significantly reducing demand for the coal needed to fuel electricity. That means less coal jobs.
Furthermore, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office just issued their analysis of Trump's budget proposal. The CBO forecast that the economy would grow only by 1.9 percent, lower than the 3 percent growth projections asserted by the White House.
And for those who say, "look at the success of the stock market," I say, Wall Street's success is rarely felt on Main Street.
While the Beltway is in a frenzy over the Russia-Trump controversy, the realities of America's heartland are being ignored and neither the Trump administration or the Republican-controlled Congress are being held accountable for letting down the very people who put them over the finish line last November.
Yes, the public deserves answers on the extent of Russia's interference in the 2016 election, but not at the expense of ignoring the lack of progress being made towards reinvigorating the economy.
Capri Cafaro (@thehonorablecsc) is a contributor to the Washington Examiner's Beltway Confidential blog. She is a former member of the Ohio State Senate, where she was the Senate minority leader. She is now an Executive in Residence at American University's School of Public Affairs.
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