July 18, 2017
*-- White House to promote U.S. products with 'Made in America' week --*
The White House is launching a three-week messaging campaign to spotlight President Donald Trump's agenda, including "Made in America" week starting Monday with U.S.-made products from all 50 states.
Trump will examine products displayed at the White House and on the South Lawn, and then will speak Monday afternoon to the media on his administration's support of manufacturing companies in America.
Trump wants to increase U.S. production by scaling back regulations and renegotiating the country's trade deals.
"By offering each state the opportunity to showcase a Made In America product, President Trump reaffirms this administration's commitment to further encourage manufacturing in the United States that will further stimulate the economy and create jobs," the White House said in a statement.
For example, representatives of North Carolina-based Cheerwine company will display its cherry-flavor cola that is used in southern recipes. The company is celebrating its 100th anniversary and is owned by founder L.D. Peeler's great-grandsons, Mark and Cliff Ritchie.
On Wednesday, Trump will issue a proclamation that emphasizes products in the United States.
The United States sets "the world standard for quality and craftsmanship," Helen Ferre, the White House's director of media affairs told reporters at a briefing Sunday in Piscataway N.J., where the president is spending the weekend.
The Trump Organization has previously been criticized outsourcing many of its products, including clothing and home decor.
After a week of highlighting American-made products, next week is called "American Heroes" week -- and is expected to focus on American jobs. The third week is devoted to the "American Dream," according to a White House official.
Past "theme weeks" included infrastructure, energy and technology.
But efforts to spotlight Trump's agenda come amid high-profile news on the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and the president's comments on Twitter.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a political adviser to Trump, told The Wall Street Journal that the White House communications team is "still learning" how to wield its political influence, including its goals for the healthcare debate.
Even though health insurance reform is a big issue, the White House is not planning a week on medical issues.
"Every day and every week, in a sense, is a healthcare week," a White House official told the press pool Sunday. "It's something that enormous White House and administration resources have been devoted to since day one."
Trump's focus on increasing jobs is linked to rewriting the U.S. tax code.
"The longer the healthcare debate drags out, the harder it'll be to get to the finish line on tax reform," said William Galston, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, said to Bloomberg. "Healthcare and tax reform are linked in very concrete ways."
Republicans' healthcare legislation is intended to reduce a number of taxes imposed by the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. That includes eliminating a tax imposed on businesses and individuals not getting healthcare insurance. But a revised Senate plan released Thursday doesn't eliminate a 3.8 percent net investment tax and a 0.9 percent payroll tax to individuals with incomes above $200,000 and married couples making more than $250,000.
"We're absolutely committed to getting tax reform done this year," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said last Sunday on ABC's This Week. "Our plan is to have a full-blown release of the plan in the beginning of September, with being able to vote and getting this passed before the end of the year."
But more critical than rewriting the tax code are necessary budgetary issues. By Sept. 30, Congress will have to pass a bill to keep the government funded. And by the middle of October, Congress will also have to raise the debt ceiling.