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Photos: Getty Images

President Trump’s time management — or lack thereof — is without recent historical precedent. To put our new reporting on his schedules in context, we spoke with former top aides to presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

The big picture: The difference between Trump and his recent predecessors is eye-popping.

Trump has the least in common with George W. Bush.

  • Bush's calendar was tightly scheduled and booked out months ahead.
  • Bush would wake around 5:15 a.m.; have coffee with his wife, Laura; read the newspapers; and get to the Oval Office by 6:45 a.m., per a former top aide who spoke anonymously to avoid offending Trump.
  • Bush 43 was assiduously punctual. His schedulers broke his days into 10-minute increments, with the first meeting around 8:15 a.m., according to the former aide.
  • A 20-minute meeting would run over two increments; meetings started early and finished on time. If Bush wanted to continue a conversation with an outsider, his staff would schedule a follow-up meeting.
  • He sometimes watched sports in the residence, but rarely watched TV in the West Wing.
  • After Bush finished his workday, around 5:30 or 6 p.m., he'd do a workout on his stationary bike, finish dinner by 7:30 p.m., read his briefing materials in the Treaty Room, and be in bed reading a book by about 9 p.m., according to the former aide.

Barack Obama was similarly disciplined. But unlike Bush, he would sometimes stay up until 2 a.m. reading.

  • His daily private schedule would typically have 6 meetings, as well as intelligence and economic briefings, according to Alyssa Mastromonaco, his deputy chief of staff for operations.
  • Obama would usually get to the Oval Office around 9 a.m. and leave around 6 or 6:30 p.m. for dinner with the first lady and his daughters. He would have evening events around 3 nights a week and would travel domestically about 3 times a month, Mastromonaco said.
  • "There were unscheduled blocks of time, but they were a rare occurrence, and usually leading into bigger moments — foreign trips, State of the Union, etc.," she emailed.

Trump's approach to scheduling most resembles Bill Clinton's early days, according to presidential historian Chris Whipple.

  • Clinton was undisciplined, addicted to rope lines and chronically late — so much so that his deputy chief of staff Erskine Bowles conducted a "time and motion" study of the president to figure out where all the time went.
  • As Clinton's presidency matured, his days in the Oval Office typically began with a 9 a.m. meeting with his chief of staff followed by his intelligence briefing, according to aides from the Clinton White House.
  • Once in the Oval, Clinton typically spent the day there. Staff built time into his schedule for him to read policy briefings, meet with staff and make phone calls. He worked well into the evening, often with events, the aides said.
  • Mack McLarty, Clinton's first chief of staff, told us that although Clinton often deviated from his schedule, he started the day with a structure — usually with every hour full, with 1 to 3 p.m. to catch up on mail and calls.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Surprising pandemic side effect: Soaring trade deficits

Source: Census Bureau and Bureau of Economic Analysis; Chart: Axios Visuals

Inflation and jobs may get all the economic headlines, but meanwhile a big shift is taking place in the underpinnings of the world economy: The U.S. trade deficit is soaring.

What's happening: Americans' spending on imported physical goods has gone through the roof, while exports are growing slowly, making the U.S. the world's consumer of last resort.

Mike Allen, author of AM
2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Third Way: "Big Lie" could become "Big Coup"

Graphic: Third Way

Third Way, the center-left think tank, is urging fellow Democrats to respond to the Capitol riot with "the size, scope, and seriousness of a presidential campaign," co-founder Matt Bennett tells me.

Driving the news: "For the first time in U.S. history, a party must mount two parallel presidential campaigns: one to win the election, and the other to prevent its theft," Bennett said, calling this "a Paul Revere moment."

Advocates say Biden has let Haitian migrants down

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photos: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images, Christian Torres/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Continued turmoil in Haiti is causing a growing number of Haitians to try to make it to American shores — and some advocates say the Biden administration isn't supporting this community in its time of crisis.

The big picture: Haitian-American activists in South Florida told Axios Today they feel like President Biden has gone back on campaign promises he made to the community to stand up for them.