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Trump creates distractions which obscure his accomplishments

By Cal Thomas, Tribune Content Agency on

Side issues -- some of them created by the president himself -- have obscured the accomplishments of the Donald Trump administration during his first year in office.

The economy is the most obvious one. From anemic growth in the previous administration, it is now growing at around 3 percent, which economists say is ideal. The stock market continues to set records, fattening retirement portfolios.

Unemployment is at its lowest level since 2000. It is also at a 17-year low for African-Americans, and it has dropped for all other major racial and ethnic groups. The black community is unlikely to give the president much credit because of its addiction to the Democratic Party, even though that party has taken their votes for granted and done little for them.

The good economic news may be penetrating the largely negative media coverage. The Wall Street Journal reports: "Although President Donald Trump's overall approval ratings have dropped to the lowest point of his presidency, he is getting significantly higher marks in one important area: his handling of the economy."

During the campaign, candidate Trump promised to increase the number of manufacturing jobs. Critics said he couldn't do it because those jobs were gone forever. A White House statement claims that 159,000 manufacturing jobs have been created since the president took office. This contrasts with the final year of the Obama administration, when manufacturing jobs were being trimmed at an average of 1,000 per month, according to the statement.

The Treasury Department's Office of Tax Policy estimates that the administration's economic policies will increase tax revenue by $1.8 trillion over 10 years.

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On his visits to China, Vietnam and South Korea, the president achieved trade deals worth more than $270 billion that will benefit American companies and their employees.

The "caliphate" in Iraq and Syria established by the Islamic State has been effectively destroyed, primarily because the president lifted rules of engagement and allowed the military to go after the terrorists as if this is a real war, which it is, and not a conflict where one side is burdened by rules and the other isn't.

Illegal immigration has declined substantially even before a wall is constructed.

The president is fulfilling other promises. He is populating the federal courts with judges who are subject to the constraints of the Constitution and don't have a history of legislating from the bench.

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