Trump's 2025 vision, revealed
Former President Trump's second-term governing plans are coming into clearer focus, as he lays out a vision for a dramatic expansion of federal power — particularly the presidency.
Why it matters: In public statements, videos and posts on his campaign's website, Trump complains about Washington's "swamp" — but lays out a plan that would give him, as president, more control of virtually every facet of life in America.
Zoom in: Trump's plans go well beyond the provocative promises he made during his recent CNN town hall — to pardon nearly all of the convicted Jan. 6 rioters (there have been about 500), and to immediately broker an end the war in Ukraine.
- Such pardons would effectively nullify what Attorney General Merrick Garland has called the Justice Department's most far-reaching and important investigation in its history.
- Trump's comments on Ukraine were in line with his opposition to continued military aide to help that nation resist Russia's invasion.
Those moves would be extremely controversial, but generally within a president's authority. Much of Trump's agenda, however, would represent an unprecedented power grab by the executive branch — driven by far-right conservatism and Trump's grievances.
- Federal workforce: He wants to give the president the authority to hire and fire federal workers at will — not a new idea, but now part of a broad effort to "clean out" investigators and officials he sees as disloyal or who have questioned his conduct.
- Education: As part of a sweeping plan for the federal government to exert more control of education, Trump wants to fire "radical left" officials who accredit universities, reward schools that abolish tenure for teachers, eliminate many college administrators and remove diversity, equity, and inclusion programs.
- Law enforcement/intelligence: Trump — who's facing a range of criminal charges — said after he was indicted in New York that he wanted to "defund" the Justice Department and the FBI. That might have been an exaggeration, but Trump does want his brand of politics to reshape the Justice Department and U.S. intelligence.
- He's vowing to get rid of "Marxist prosecutors " and create an auditing system to monitor U.S. intelligence agencies “to ensure they are not spying on our citizens."
- Gender issues: He wants DOJ to investigate Big Pharma and the big hospital networks to determine whether they have "deliberately covered up the long-term side-effects of 'sex transitions.'" He also wants to boot hospitals or providers from Medicaid and Medicare if they offer gender-affirming care.
- Crime: Trump wants to use the U.S. military to go after drug cartels and street crime.
- Housing: He wants to eliminate an Obama-era rule that requires cities and local governments to address residential segregation and poverty in order to receive federal housing grants.
- Cities/housing: His “quantum leap to revolutionize the American standard of living” includes baby bonuses to create a new baby boom and the design of 10 new “Freedom Cities” in the U.S.
- Guns: Trump wants national concealed carry reciprocity, which would allow people with a concealed carry permit in their home state to have that privilege in any other state.
The intrigue: Trump has taken credit for the Supreme Court overturning abortion rights under Roe v. Wade, a decision made possible by three Trump-appointed justices.
- But he hasn't said whether he'd sign a federal abortion ban — as many conservatives want — or embrace a law like Florida's ban after six weeks of pregnancy, one of the nation's strictest abortion laws. It was pushed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Trump's chief rival for the GOP nomination.
- Trump has said abortion is a "losing issue" for conservative Republicans — but he still wants their votes.
Reality check: Many of Trump's ideas are outlined in broad strokes, without details of how they'd be implemented or funded.
What they're saying: "What Trump is proposing for 2025 ... is the trappings of a democracy. ... But it's a Potemkin village," said Norman Ornstein, an emeritus scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.