How does President Trump plan to 'make America great again' when he gets into office?

Donald Trump campaigned on pledges to "make America great again" and "drain the swamp" of the Washington political elite - but how does he plan to make good on his promises?

The Republican often remained vague on the details of his landmark commitments, most notably how to get Mexico to pay for a wall it does not want along the southern US border.

But the hotel mogul has still offered a general hit-list of priorities that he will be expected to enact or account for in his first 100 days in office - and with the Republicans retaining control of Congress he faces less opposition to seeing his presidential plans become reality.

Here's a guide to what Trump is expected to do in the White House followed by the timeline that will put him into power:


Trump has promised to build a wall along the Mexican border, deport millions of illegal immigrants and ban immigration from countries that have been "compromised by terrorism".

The billionaire has said he would force Mexico to pay for the "great, great wall" that he estimates would cost up to $12 billion (£9.65 billion) though he has no power to force this to happen.

The cost of Trump's mass deportation plan is estimated at at least $166 billion (£133.54 billion), which alone may see Congress block it despite general support from congressional Republicans.

His early campaign call to ban Muslims from entering the US has also been watered down to a pledge for "extreme vetting" for those arriving in the country.

Trade and China

Trump has promised to "get tough" on China, labeling the country a currency manipulator, while ripping up and renegotiating international trade agreements in pursuit of policies he frames as "Americanism not globalism".

He has pledged to renegotiate or scrap the North American Free Trade Agreement, the 1994 free-trade deal Bill Clinton signed with Mexico and Canada, and withdraw from the still-to-be-finalised 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), though as president he can only delay its passing.

Trump said he will put up barriers to free trade, especially exports from China and Mexico.

Law and order

Counter-terrorism officers of the NYPD stand guard at Donald Trump's Trump Tower in Manhattan. Credit: Reuters

Trump branded himself the "law and order" candidate and promised "safety will be restored" with his arrival in the Oval Office.

His proposed policies would put more officers on the streets, speed up the delivery of military equipment to police forces and pursue the controversial crime-fighting tactic of stop-and-frisk, which was ruled unconstitutional in 2013.

Islamic State and Syria refugee crisis

Trump has offered few details about his plans to "knock the hell out of" the militant group, explaining that he wouldn't want to reveal his strategy to the enemy, though one aim he has suggested is to cut off the militants' access to oil.

He said he would give US generals 30 days after he takes office on January 20 to propose their own plans.

Trump has also committed to creating "safe zones" in Syria to house fleeing refugees, which he said will be funded by Gulf states, but protected by the US military.

Russia and Nato

Donald Trump has promised to forge a stronger relationship with Russia as he prepares to join the world political elite. Credit: Reuters

Trump has said he would have a "very, very good" relationship with Russia and would work with Vladimir Putin to combat IS.

He also said he would look into recognising Crimea, seized from Ukraine in 2014, as Russian territory and lifting the subsequent sanctions on Russia imposed by Western nations.

Trump has also suggested he will review the US's commitments to the "rip-off" Nato agreement and other nations' dependence on the US.

Taxes and spending

Trump has vowed to make deep tax cuts while increasing spending on the military and infrastructure, measures that are likely to be supported in Congress.

The national debt is expected to rise sharply in order for him to deliver his promise to protect health and retirement programmes that account for more than a third of US government spending.

Trump has pledged to "put an end" to the "massive job-killing" regulation industry "on day one".

He has also promised to cancel all US payments to UN climate change programmes - claiming the science on it is a "hoax" - and redirect the funds to his planned $1 trillion US infrastructure projects amounting to "the roads, highways, bridges, tunnels, airports, and the railways of tomorrow".


Barack Obama's landmark legislative success is under threat of being repealed. Credit: Reuters

Trump has promised to overturn President Barack Obama's signature Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare, which he deems a "disaster" - though the Senate may thwart his repeal effort.

He wants to replace it with a plan that would give states more control over health provisions for the poor and allow insurers to sell plans nationally.

Washington lobbyists

Trump's attack on political elites will begin with a measure that would force government officials to wait a minimum of five years to become lobbyists after leaving office.

He also wants a lifetime ban on government officials lobbying on behalf of foreign administrations.

Wall Street

Donald Trump is expected to attack financial reform legislation brought in after the 2010 financial crisis. Credit: Reuters

Trump has promised a "dismantling" of the financial reform law brought in in 2010 after the financial crisis, though he hasn't explained how it will be achieved.

His campaign manager confirmed in July that Trump backed the Republican Party's commitment to reinstate legislation introduced in the 1930s-era which separated investment banks from deposit-taking institutions.

Timeline for Trump to take power

Donald Trump will be inaugurated as the 45th US President on January 20. Credit: Reuters

Here's a brief summary of the key dates from Trump's election victory to his inauguration: