Project 2025
July 7, 2024 6:26 PM   Subscribe

My wife, while perusing the Internet, came across this plan, to be implemented if Donald Trump is elected for a second term. I have just two questions; is this real? And if the republican nominee wins the presidency, is it likely?
posted by CollectiveMind to Law & Government (25 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Yes, it's real...if they get their chance, which we cannot allow.
posted by wenestvedt at 6:34 PM on July 7 [29 favorites]

It's real, in terms of it not being anti-Trump disinformation, but real with some caveats:

1. A lot of the promises would require R majorities in Congress, which don't yet exist, and/or
1b. Fundamental constitutional changes in the way the US system of powers works,
2. It's put together by one specific Trump-supporting body which, admittedly important, is competing with others who have very different agendas, and
3. It's notoriously difficult in the before-election to tell which promises any candidate will be able to, or inclined to, follow through on. This is particularly true of Trump whose sense of loyalty to others is nil.

It's real, it's extremely bad, and should be frightening, it's a statement of intent by a powerful group, but shouldn't be seen as a prediction of outcomes.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 6:41 PM on July 7 [28 favorites]

Heather Cox Richardson is a thoughtful historian whose writing is fact-based and clear. She has been writing about Project 2025 for a little while now, so yes, it's real.

Here's her piece about Project 2025 from this week - well worth a read.
posted by kristi at 6:42 PM on July 7 [30 favorites]

There are people out there organizing it, although that’s nothing new for preparing for a new presidency.

Trump is lapping up the support, but there’s no indication that he would honor that contract any more than he’s honored any other one. In particular, a large part of the agenda calls for dismantling the executive branch. Somehow I don’t think see Trump giving up large swathes of power as a thing that he’s all jazzed up about doing.

In short, there are some people out there with very nasty agendas who would very much like to drive how the next presidency goes. Nothing new, but worth keeping an eye on.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 6:43 PM on July 7 [5 favorites]

Not to abuse the edit window: in that piece, Richardson notes that it's SO unpopular that Trump is even claiming to know nothing about it or its executives (despite their connections with his campaign). So: yes, it's real, yes, it's extremely worrying, yes, Trump or other Republicans would almost certainly try to implement as much of it as possible given the chance, but also even Trump is unwilling to say so publicly.
posted by kristi at 6:44 PM on July 7 [6 favorites]

It's real. It wouldn't be something that happens immediately - like, if he is re-elected it's not like he would be sworn in and then boom, a switch gets flicked and it would be instant. But he'd try real hard.

And that is ALSO why everyone was so freaked out and pissed off about some of the stuff the Supreme Court has been doing lately - because they made it easier for him to put this into play. And it's also why everyone needs to pay close attention to their Senate and Congressional races this year - so that we don't end up electing a GOP-majority congress, which would ALSO make it easier for him.

Ideally Trump loses. But if he doesn't lose - then we need there to be so many roadblocks to him trying to implement any of that shit that he gets bored and spends the entire 4 years watching TV in the Oval Office and that's it; and since he'd never be able to run for office again, he'd probably not give a shit about endorsing anyone after him and the whole MAGA movement fizzles and this is thankfully over.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:30 PM on July 7 [15 favorites]

I think the real takeaway is that even if it doesn't all happen, any part of it could do terrible damage to our country and the people in it, so we have to make sure they don't get the chance to implement any of it.

I will tell you how seriously I am taking Republican intentions; I am trying to work out a plan for a way to get my adult trans daughter out of the country should they win, on the principle that blue states will not be able to protect their citizens, or not wholly. I have already moved states to keep her safe, and many people back in Texas thought I was foolish to do so, but ever since we left, more and more anti-trans laws and oppression have been making their way into law and practice there.

It's easy to look at a party with so many literal buffoons in it and think there's no way they could really get in power/do the things they say, but it's something we absolutely need to take seriously, because the people who wrote this stuff are 100% serious about implementing it, and given enough power, they will.
posted by emjaybee at 7:40 PM on July 7 [31 favorites]

It's very, very real -and they have affiliate outside the US - this is a global theocratic movement, in New Zealand out non-rlegious right wing refer to them as the Taliban - unfortunately what passes for journalism here treated that as rhetoric and gave them an easy pass. Our bunch all look literally dead, dead eyes and robotic, they have sold themselves to something.

They are manichaens (dualist religion, lightness and darkness etc.) before they are Christians, this is a very weird movement [Baptist News .com. CW image of the faithful laying hands on Trump - this is not cosplay]

They are f&*^ing evil, their first attack here has been trying to degrade ALL planning law that relates to nature (they were doing same in UK, I'm so glad Labour got in), their second act was reminding disabled people of their status by reducing their allowance. 2025 is a global nightmare.
posted by unearthed at 12:02 AM on July 8 [5 favorites]

Here's an editorial (as in, written by the Editorial Board) from today's Washington Post. Whatever your opinions about WaPo, it is one of the major, mainstream "papers of record".
posted by trig at 2:28 AM on July 8 [2 favorites]

What Trump doesn't want you to know about Project 2025. Trump's claim that he has "nothing to do" with the people behind Project 2025 is clearly false. But is it possible that Trump will simply ignore Project 2025's recommendations? History tells us that is unlikely.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 5:14 AM on July 8 [1 favorite]

In particular, a large part of the agenda calls for dismantling the executive branch. Somehow I don’t think see Trump giving up large swathes of power as a thing that he’s all jazzed up about doing.

A large part of the agenda calls for replacing civil service employees of the executive branch with people who are personally loyal to Trump and/or Project 2025's goals. See Axios: A radical plan for Trump’s second term.
The centerpiece

Trump signed an executive order, “Creating Schedule F in the Excepted Service,” in October 2020, which established a new employment category for federal employees. It received wide media coverage for a short period, then was largely forgotten in the mayhem and aftermath of Jan. 6 — and quickly was rescinded by President Biden.

Sources close to Trump say that if he were elected to a second term, he would immediately reimpose it.

Tens of thousands of civil servants who serve in roles deemed to have some influence over policy would be reassigned as “Schedule F” employees. Upon reassignment, they would lose their employment protections.

New presidents typically get to replace more than 4,000 so-called “political” appointees to oversee the running of their administrations. But below this rotating layer of political appointees sits a mass of government workers who enjoy strong employment protections — and typically continue their service from one administration to the next, regardless of the president’s party affiliation.

An initial estimate by the Trump official who came up with Schedule F found it could apply to as many as 50,000 federal workers — a fraction of a workforce of more than 2 million, but a segment with a profound role in shaping American life.

Trump, in theory, could fire tens of thousands of career government officials with no recourse for appeals. He could replace them with people he believes are more loyal to him and to his “America First” agenda.

Even if Trump did not deploy Schedule F to this extent, the very fact that such power exists could create a significant chilling effect on government employees.

This would give Trump, personally, more power. Even though Project 2025 speaks of drastically cutting the number of employees of the executive branch and even eliminating entire departments, Trump's influence and power over who remains would be far far greater than it was during his first term. There might be fewer of them, but more of them will do what Trump wants regardless of the legality and anyone who objects to his plans would have little to no ability to counter them or legal and employment protections.
posted by soundguy99 at 6:48 AM on July 8 [9 favorites]

By the way, if you're looking for a preview the agenda hasn't changed much since the 1980s.

Basically it's the Moral Majority without a central leader. They're trying to draft Trump into that role.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 7:01 AM on July 8 [5 favorites]

Here is NYTimes gift link to an editorial in the NYTimes from February by Carlos Lozada, who did the brutal task of actually reading the whole damn thing. He provides a detailed summary with analysis.
posted by coffeecat at 7:46 AM on July 8 [2 favorites]

Believe them when they tell you who they are. Whether Trump loses or wins or can't implement this himself, this is an agenda that the far right wants to see put in action whether it's this election cycle or the next and whether it's by Trump or whoever succeeds him.
posted by beaning at 8:54 AM on July 8 [4 favorites]

Regarding the chance of this happening, assuming Trump wins, the probability is very high. Many of the people involved were part of the previous Trump administration, most of whom he will tap once again. And this time they are actually prepared.

Moreover, the extremist religious right is one of the few groups to whom Trump feels any amount of loyalty, because they were key to his 2016 win, would be key to a win in 2024, and are some of his staunchest supporters.

How much of it they could actually do doesn't depend as much on Congress as it might seem at first blush. Most of the headline grabbing stuff is internal executive branch stuff. The President has pretty wide latitude in how immigration (and immigrants themselves) are handled, with the exception of green card holders. No authorization from Congress is required to set the Justice Department on people sending mifepristone through the mail. The President can direct the FDA to withdraw authorization for contraceptives. It is arguably within his power to reclassify employees who refuse to comply as political appointees, making it possible to fire them. Even if the courts ultimately disagree, the damage will have already been done by their replacements.

About the only obviously crazypants thing on the list that isn't likely to happen is banning porn. There's case law on point that protects pornography, the overturning of which would fly directly in the face of other recent decisions by the current group of Supreme Court justices.

The real question is whether or not Trump would listen to court orders if any of these actions were challenged. Given the Supreme Court's decision in Trump v. United States that insulates him from being prosecuted for nearly anything related to his conduct in office, I would not bet on it unless there's a Democratic supermajority in Congress to impeach and remove him if he decided to pull an Andrew Jackson and just ignore the courts.
posted by wierdo at 9:19 AM on July 8 [2 favorites]

The Right has an agenda, and since 1981(Reagan) they are pretty successful at implementing it - drastic tax reductions for the wealthy, strong limits or abolishing regulation, ending reproductive choice, reducing Voting Rights, denying Climate Change, promoting fossil fuel use, reducing aid for education in general and specifically college, ending affirmative action, massive spending on weapons and assigning many military task to extraordinarily profitable contractors, promoting Christian nationalism. They have made huge progress on these things. They would like to privatize Social Security (and the already wealthy own the most stock; this would be hugely profitable), reduce Medicare and Medicaid. We had some progress on healthcare for all with ACA Obamacare; it's been shredded, esp. cost=-saving measures which reduce profits.



WaPo (ungated)

The orange fascist is distancing himself, but will assist a GOPer Congress if elected. He doesn't really care about policy as long as he perceives himself to be winning. I think the Left is being outplayed and is complacent. I am active in local politics because that's where I can be most effective. So, yes, it's serious, it's probably the public tip of a terrifying iceberg.
posted by theora55 at 9:50 AM on July 8 [4 favorites]

It's real, it's likely, and it's happening right now. Trump is a person who doesn't respect the laws, and the Republicans enable him. They have already packed the Supreme Court, delt huge blows to abortion and voting rights, among a million other things... Trump would love to be a dictator (he's said so plenty of times!!) and is willing to overthrow the government and law and order to do so.

Well, as for porn... Texas imposed an unreasonable and overreaching requirement on porn sites that means several of the big ones block access from Texas. It's not unreasonable those restrictions become the law of the land, plus stiff penalties plus abuse of power indeed means porn could easily be illegal.

As the supreme court has said, Trump is virtually a king.
posted by Jacen at 12:07 PM on July 8 [2 favorites]

Joyce Vance, former US Attorney & Federal Prosecutor, current University of Alabama law professor, has just released an index of all the Substack columns she's written about Project 2025.

When someone with her kind of legal experience is this worried about Project 2025, it is very real and very dangerous.
posted by soundguy99 at 2:31 PM on July 8 [2 favorites]

The only silver lining in this is that people are actually starting to hear about Project 2025. It's been bubbling around for months, if not years, of course, but now it's starting to get enough publicity that Trump himself has (no doubt falsely) tried to distance himself from it. That should put it on a lot more peoples' radar.
posted by lhauser at 5:18 PM on July 8

It definitely looks real and, leaving aside the absolute bastardry of every word of it, is very much based on an understanding of what can be done if the President is willing to let others do all the hard work and just enable them. This is exactly was the US is facing if Trump wins - he's not at all interested in policy as such and absolutely willing to let others do the dirty work and take the fall if anything fails, while taking all the credit for 'fixing America'. The main reason he didn't really achieve anywhere near as much lasting change in his first term as he would have liked was that the underpinnings of the government were unwilling to carry out his evil plans. This plan resolves that by replacing a professional public service with toadies who will blindly carry out whatever orders they're given.
posted by dg at 5:20 PM on July 8

Presidential Transition Project

End no fault divorce
Complete ban on abortions without exceptions
Ban contraceptives
Additional tax breaks for corporations and the 1%
Higher taxes for the working class
Elimination of unions and worker protections
Raise the retirement age
Cut Social Security
Cut Medicare
End the Affordable Care Act
Raise prescription drug prices
Eliminate the Department of Education
Use public, taxpayer money for private religious schools
Teach Christian religious beliefs in public schools
End free and discounted school lunch programs
End civil rights & DEI protections in government
Ban African American and gender studies in all levels of education
Ban books and curriculum about slavery
Ending climate protections
Imcrease arctic drilling
Deregulate big business and the oil industry
Promote and expedite capital punishment
End marriage equality
Condemn single mothers while promoting only "traditional families"
Defund the FBI and Homeland Security
Use the military to break up domestic protests
Mass deportation of immigrants and incarceration in "camps"
End birth right citizenship
Ban Muslims from entering the country
Eliminates federal agencies like the FDA, EPA, NOAA and more
Continue to pack the Supreme Court, and lower courts with right-wing judges
posted by H21 at 8:23 PM on July 8 [3 favorites]

Yes, it’s real. :: gestures at the entire present day :: Look at all the daily headlines about states dismantling abortion rights, banning books, legislating the ten commandments and teaching the bible in public schoolrooms. Look at all the GOP candidates for office and state legislators floating ideas about removing no-fault divorce, getting rid of the right to use birth control. There are candidates, states, and legislators literally crowing for the blood of leftists in public. Look at the actions of the Supreme Court, which is essentially a council of oligarchs now, removing personal freedoms and shoring up corporate and GOP interests.

In Indiana, they have banned anyone under the age of 18 from entering libraries. Like, read that twice. ENTERING LIBRARIES.

And all of this? This is just a preview. This is Project 2025, it’s happening all around us - not in the future, but right in this very minute.

This is why it’s not just enough to color in the box for President in November. We have to send these loons packing from the local schoolboards all the way up through the house, senate and oval office, or we could end up losing 75 years of social progress. They scent blood in the water, so they’re showing their teeth.

Imagine how much worse it will be if they gain actual Federal power again.
posted by invincible summer at 8:33 PM on July 8 [3 favorites]

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