5 Big Questions From Donald Trump's 1st Week as President-Elect

How will Trump govern once he's in the White House?

ByABC News
November 16, 2016, 4:17 PM

— -- It’s been just over a week since Donald Trump was declared the president-elect, and he has kept a relatively low profile, holed up in Trump Tower in New York City, assembling his incoming Cabinet and White House staff and tweeting occasionally.

His inauguration is more than 60 days away, but questions are already starting to percolate about how Trump will lead once in office.

Here are five big questions about how Trump will govern that we’re asking after his first seven days as president-elect:

Will Trump’s Presidential Policies Reflect His Campaign Promises?

Among Trump’s first priorities once in office, which he mentioned when he visited Capitol Hill last Thursday, are immigration, health care, jobs and lowering taxes.

“We’re going to look very strongly on immigration, health care, and we’re looking at jobs, big league jobs,” Trump told reporters, after emerging from his meeting with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

However, it’s looking likely that some of his policy positions will change or be tweaked after he moves into the White House.

In his first TV interview as president-elect, Trump did not dip into specifics of the wall he promised would be built on the U.S.-Mexico border. “For certain areas I would [consider a fence], but certain areas, a wall is more appropriate,” he said in an interview with “60 Minutes” that aired Sunday night.

During his campaign, Trump promised to “repeal and replace” “Obamacare,” President Barack Obama’s signature health care law.

But in an interview with The Wall Street Journal last week, Trump said he would consider preserving certain parts of the Affordable Care Act, including protecting patients with existing conditions and allowing children to stay on their parents’ plans until age 26.

“I like those very much,” he told the newspaper.

Will Trump Do as Others Say He’ll Do?

In the past seven days, those who have spoken with Trump have speculated about what he will do in office.

According to Obama, Trump said he will maintain a strong commitment to the 28-member NATO security alliance.

“In my conversation with the president-elect, he expressed a great interest in maintaining our core strategic relationships, and so one of the messages I will be able to deliver is his commitment to NATO and the trans-Atlantic alliance,” Obama said in a press briefing at the White House on Monday.

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who is said to be under consideration for a Cabinet post, suggested on CNN last Thursday that Trump isn’t inclined to forget his promise to hire a special prosecutor to investigate Hillary Clinton’s use of private email server when she was secretary of state and that Trump may use an executive order to build the border wall.

At The Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council gathering on Monday, Giuliani said Trump’s foreign policy early on will most likely focus on destroying ISIS.

House Speaker Paul Ryan said on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday, “We are not planning on erecting a deportation force. Donald Trump’s not planning on that.”

Will Trump Cut Ties to His Businesses?

Another issue for Trump is whether he will sever ties to his businesses, which could present a conflict of interest for him when he is president.

Trump still has a stake in more than 500 companies worldwide and has not been clear about how his properties, assets and brand will be managed while he is in the White House.

He has been conducting his transition efforts from Trump Tower, the headquarters for the Trump Organization, and three of his children — Donald Jr., Ivanka and Eric Trump — sit on his transition team while managing his businesses.

How Will His Administration Mesh?

In his first major staffing decisions, Trump announced Steve Bannon and Reince Priebus as his chief strategist and chief of staff, respectively. Bannon is an anti-establishment figure, while Priebus is considered a Washington insider for his three terms as Republican National Committee chairman.

Priebus, along with Vice President–elect Mike Pence, will be Trump’s liaison with Congress.

Pence, who’s now leading the White House transition team, decided all lobbyists should be removed from his team, effectively dismantling the structure that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie built, according to two people familiar with the transition process.

Nevertheless, a top Trump aide denied turmoil, telling ABC News, “Transition process is not chaotic. Everyone is calm, but it could be sewn up better. Besides the public backlash over Bannon, there was internal backlash from Trump loyalists over the Reince hire. So, moving forward, the campaign hopes to be more strategic in their rollouts.”

Will Trump Be Different From on the Campaign Trail?

Will America see less of the bombastic persona we saw before the election?

At least for now, Trump seems to be using less divisive, us-versus-them rhetoric, instead opting for themes of unity.

In his victory speech last week, he said, “Now it is time for America to bind the wounds of division, have to get together. To all Republicans and Democrats and independents across this nation, I say it is time for us to come together as one united people.”

In his interview with “60 Minutes” on Sunday, Trump addressed a small segment of his supporters who have been carrying out racist attacks and hate crimes, telling them to “stop it.”

After meeting with Obama at the White House last Thursday, Trump said he has “great respect” for Obama.

However, there are still hints that Trump’s temperament in office will remain a wild card.

He has still pretty active on social media. On Twitter, his favorite forum, he recently criticized the people demonstrating against him, before amending his tweet with a softer tone, and railed against the media.

ABC News’ Tom Llamas, Candace Smith and Ines De La Cuetara contributed to this report.

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