By the Way, Trump Instituted a Lobbying Ban and Shook up the NSC

Posted: Jan 29, 2017 6:15 PM

President Trump's executive order on immigration was not the only action to cause uproar this weekend. Along with the travel ban was a controversial decision to shake things up at the National Security Council. In the executive order, Trump limited the influence of the Director of National Intelligence and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff by removing their names from National Security Council meetings. At the same time, he gave his chief strategist Steve Bannon a spot on the NSC's principals committee. 

National defense leaders criticized the move. Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates called it a "big mistake," while President Obama's national security adviser Susan Rice called it "stone cold crazy."

Trump's promotion of Bannon also prompted the hashtag #StopPresidentBannon on Twitter, leaving many wondering why such power should be given to someone with little national security experience. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer pushed back at those claims, however, noting Bannon's experience as a naval officer and knowledge of the "geopolitical landscape."

One more executive action to mention. Trump signed a 5-year ban on lobbying for administration officials and a lifetime ban on foreign government lobbying. Had these orders been signed on a different weekend, they certainly would have dominated the front pages.