Who is Donald Trump?
73 years old
Born in Queens; recently changed his primary residence from Manhattan to Palm Beach, Fla.
45th president of the United States
Former reality show host and New York City real estate developer who never ran for political office until his 2016 presidential campaign
Trump’s signature issues
Mr. Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic has not been a defining issue of his presidency for long, but how his administration has responded is likely to be critical not only to his legacy, but also to how some swing voters who are open to both him and Joseph R. Biden Jr. make their decision in November.
Before the coronavirus crisis consumed his White House, his 2016 rallying cry of “build the wall” still echoed in his re-election campaign. Construction of a wall along the country’s southern border, intended to halt the flow of undocumented immigrants into the country, has been slow going, but an immigration crackdown has remained one of the policy issues that enlivens his base. Mr. Trump has even tried to use immigration as a way to change the subject from criticism of his administration’s handling of the pandemic.
Mr. Trump has also made eliminating federal regulations a priority, with a focus on dismantling Obama-era environmental regulations. So far, he has failed to achieve his top legislative priority when he came into office: repealing the Affordable Care Act. But he has pleased Republicans, in particular, with his commitment to appointing conservative judges to the federal bench at a record-setting pace.
Mr. Trump touts two trade deals as his signature policies, even as they mark a break from Republican free-tradeorthodoxy in favor of a populist approach: an initial trade agreement with China, and his revised accord with Mexico and Canada. His foreign policy doctrine can be summed up by the phrase “America First,” a banner under which Mr. Trump has over the years questioned the founding tenets of alliances like NATO, and demonstrated a reluctance to engage in overseas military operations.
Three questions about Donald Trump
1. Is Donald Trump under investigation?
For almost the first time in his presidency, the answer appears to be no. The first two years of his administration were defined by the looming investigation of the special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, who in March 2019 wrapped up his report on Russian interference in the 2016 election. Mr. Mueller did not reach a conclusion on whether Mr. Trump illegally obstructed justice, but found no evidence of a criminal conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia.
Mr. Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives months after the Russia investigation concluded, for seeking to pressure Ukraine to smear his political rivals. In February, after five months of hearings, Mr. Trump was acquitted in the Senate, along party lines, of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.
2. Will Mr. Trump’s re-election hinge on the virus?
Many aides and allies have been making the case to Mr. Trump that he is no longer running against a political opponent, but rather against the virus, and that his re-election in November depends on convincing voters that his administration’s response saved lives.
Through daily White House news conferences, Mr. Trump has been trying to reshape the narrative and convince voters that his response to the health crisis was adequate, despite the fact that he repeatedly played down the threat of the virus and was slow to absorb the scale of the risk. He has also been eager to restart the economy, so that he can claim credit for the economic gains that he was running on before the virus washed them away, while pinning the blame for the spread of the virus elsewhere, like on China or the World Health Organization.
3. How much is Donald Trump worth?
Mr. Trump, famous for telling falsehoods and making inflated claims about himself, has long claimed to be a billionaire. The question of how much Mr. Trump is really worth has been a moving target, and one he refuses to answer. He has continued to refuse to release his tax returns, and it’s now a battle being fought in the courts.
He has tried to shield his tax returns from Manhattan state prosecutors, an effort that was rejected by a federal judge. The Justice Department has helped his attempt to block a subpoena demanding the release of eight years of his personal and corporate tax returns.