The Recent Public Policy Controversies in the United States

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The development and prosperity of any country around the globe is primarily determined by its ability to develop policies that not only benefit their internal relations but also enhance their international cooperation. Additionally, in the improvement of any public policy, the executive must demonstrate full awareness of the laid procedures and effects of any actions initiated by the state (Protess & McCombs, 2016).  However, in the modern world, public policies have become increasingly complex and ubiquitous. They initiate irritation, pleasure or cause harm to different populations in the society and do not represent the true nature of a democratic government (Protess & McCombs, 2016).  Since most of these regulations represent man’s interaction with the environment, they out to have well-elaborated procedures that stipulate how they are formed, budgeted, evaluated and implemented.

Globally, the American federal government has for several decades showed their effectiveness in framing policies that empower both the community and the state.  However, the recent events have changed this notion as many citizens in the country hold demonstrations over some of the rules developed by the executive (Matt, 2018). As such, this research will assess the recent public policy controversies in the U.S where the executive demonstrated the ability to block the performance of specific actions. Additionally, it will discuss the responsibilities roles and functions that allow the promulgation of such regulations.     

Public Policy Controversy

 According to Protess & McCombs (2016), public policy involves a stable or a purposive course of action initiated by any government agency in different sectors including consumer protection and transportation. As one of the most populated countries in the world, the united states has over the years formulated regulation especially in the transport sector that not only aims at securing the region but also limiting the number of illegal immigrants sneaking into its borders.

 The travel policy in the U.S has over the years following the stipulations of the enhanced border security and reform act of 2002 that was enacted by the Congress (Harris, Shear & Nixon, 2017). The regulation defined both the entry and exit requirements for international citizens and any other conditions that may warrant getting into the borders of the country. This law played an important role in defining the methods the used by both the federal and local governments to accept different people into the country.  However, within his 100 days in office, president tramp signed the travel ban policy that halted the admission of all refugees and any other individual from seven different Islamic states including Syria, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, Iran, and Libya (Anderson, 2014). 

The move resulted into numerous protests from both internal and external sources in the country. According to sources supporting the president, the move was one of the techniques to help America become great again (Matt, 2018).  Understandably, the suspension was to halt any movement of the affected group and the US refugee admission program for an average of 120 days and also introduced a cap on the populations allowed by the former administrations. 

 According to the president, the policy was aimed at enabling the government to set up appropriate vetting mechanisms that will ensure that the visas are issued to people with reputable backgrounds and did not show any threats to national security. Furthermore, he elaborated that the policy was no a fight against religion but securing the country against terrorists. Considerably, both non-governmental organizations cited that different acts of terrorisms reported in the United States over the last decade were initiated by US-born citizens (Anderson, 2014). As opposed to Obama’s strategy of diplomacy in fighting extremism, tramp preferred using an aggressive approach that is not a true reflection of real American values.   

Roles, Responsibilities, and Functions of the Presidency

 The U.S constitution has clearly divided the roles of the different arms of the government including the executive and legislature. Notably, the former has different powers including commanding the military and the regulation of the foreign commerce. However, the control over the foreign affairs is stipulated in article two of the U.S constitution. Under this section, the president has the responsibility of appointing ambassadors after the consent of the Senate.

 As the commander in chief and through congressional actions, has the mandate to develop policies that can help in securing the country and protecting it against any foreign policies. Moreover, the office has the ability to recognize other nations and to create good relations that can help in the development of the country.  These roles have over the years been manifested by other presidents including the John Kennedy who placed different sanctions over other countries to help protect the interest of its citizens. Some of the documented occasions include the Korean War decisions, the invasion of Granada and the Cuban missile crisis (Harris, Shear & Nixon, 2017). Under these circumstances, it was the responsibility of president tramp to ensure that the United States remained safe by reducing all the avenues that could allow terrorism into the country. However, the cause of the restriction is solemnly on security purposes and not according to the president’s own perception.

Actions for the Blockage

  As the president and a branch of the executive, tramp played an important role in ensuring that the travel ban policy was affected in all the regions in the country. Notably, the office initiated the formulation of the law without involving both the Republican Party officials and the Congress. Traditionally, any policy that affects the operation of the United States especially on foreign affairs should be discussed with different executive bodies including the Senate. All the relevant institutions must thereafter consent to the provisions of the act before presenting it for presidential consent (Matt, 2018). However, in the case the travel ban enactment, it only involved the office of the president and left out the other branches of the executive.

 Equally, the president gave immediate execution of the provisions of the act that required those other state bodies such as the homeland security to enforce the requirements of the law.  This move led to the closure of U.S borders including the airports.  Through his consent, the president banned the entry of any refugee into the United States and consequent screening of the immigrants in the country.


 The general purpose of public policy is to protect the interest of the citizens particularly in the essential areas such as transport and trade relations. Buy initiating the travel ban on refugees, president tramp solemnly performed his role as the president that involves protecting the country against any security threats. However, according to the U.S constitution, he ought to have consulted other executive bodies such as the congress and senate and to seek their approval over the matter. Additionally, the restriction on the different Muslim countries as well as people of Islamic origin led to the misinterpretation of the role of the blockage that was later lifted by the Supreme Court. As such, the modern forms of public policy development not only limit its effectiveness to the society but also develop controversies among various populations.      


Anderson, J. E. (2014). Public policymaking. Cengage Learning.

Harris, G., Shear, M., & Nixon, R. (2017). Administration Moves to Carry Out Partial Travel Ban. Retrieved 29 March 2018, from

Lynch, D. (2018). US imposes modified travel ban. Retrieved 29 March 2018, from

Matt. (2018). Nearly 2,000 people faced additional airport screening after first Trump travel ban, ACLU document shows. The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 29 March 2018, from

Protess, D., & McCombs, M. E. (Eds.). (2016). Agenda setting: Readings on media, public opinion, and policymaking. Routledge.

August 01, 2023

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