The former Speaker of the House expects there to be more staff shakeups inside the White House.
Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich praised President Trump’s decision to make General John Kelly his chief of staff during an interview with the NTK Network about his new book, “Understanding Trump.”
On the topic of Kelly, Gingrich told NTK it shows that “Trump has decided he wants a more disciplined, more structured environment,” in the White House and that we should expect to see more staffing shake-ups as Kelly leads the effort to bring discipline to the Trump White House.
“Kelly will be brilliant,” Gingrich said about the new White House chief of staff and cited his experience as Marine liaison to the House as a reason to be optimistic about President Trump’s domestic agenda.
“You take different people at different times for different strengths, and I think General Kelly has the potential to be remarkable,” he said.
Gingrich was also not concerned that Trump was on his second chief of staff just a few months into the job, citing Ronald Reagan’s had four chiefs of staff and Bill Clinton’s five.
Gingrich on Trump’s agenda going forward:
In Gingrich’s new book, “Understanding Trump,” he writes about how President Trump learns:
“Donald Trump learns – when he takes information and does something with it. He tries something, sees how it works, and either continues or switches to something else.”
Gingrich says he hopes Trump’s main takeaway from the failed Obamacare repeal effort is “how much harder it is than people think” to get big legislation through the Congress.
“I am hoping [Trump] will learn a more cautious and a more inclusive model,” Gingrich said.
Pointing to the upcoming tax reform debate, Gingrich applauded the Trump administration for reaching out to the House and Senate leadership and said, “I think there has been a great deal of positive activity on that front.”
Gingrich is, however, strongly against White House chief strategist Steve Bannon’s proposal to increase the income tax on top earns in America to 44 percent.
“I am deeply opposed to raising taxes, and I hope that there will not be any individual tax increase because there’s no excuse for it. It slows down the economy,” Gingrich said, adding the reason he got involved in politics was to stop tax increases.
Gingrich on upcoming NAFTA renegotiations:
Renegotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) are expected to take place in August, and in “Understanding Trump,” Gingrich explains the negative impact trade agreements like NAFTA have had on the American economy.
He also floats in the book the possibility of a trilateral deal with the United Kingdom and Canada as a possible replacement to NAFTA, noting that the Canadian-American arrangement under NAFTA has been “an effective, mutually beneficial” one.
When asked whether he still thinks this is a possibility, Gingrich said, “That is more likely to be a bilateral agreement between the U.S. and the U.K.”
As for the impact that these NAFTA renegotiations will have on the Canadian energy and softwood lumber industry, Gingrich says, “The lumber issue has been an issue since the 1920’s, and I think it will continue to be an issue. We are somewhat tougher than past administration, so I expect that to be contentious.”
“On Energy, of course, we have been very pro-Canadian energy and have already made Canada a more successful wealthier country,” he added.
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