CNN's global business correspondent Richard Quest is visiting New Zealand, and he spoke to Morning Report about Donald Trump’s influence on the economy and covering the new President in the era of ‘alternative facts’.
On Trump’s effect on the US economy
Quest says in the short term the US economy will get a boost from Mr Trump’s plans for infrastructure spending and tax cuts, but long term the forecast is more uncertain.
“We don’t know what the effect of, for example, cancelling TPP is going to be. We don’t know what the effect of disruption of trade lines to Mexico might be. We don’t know what not negotiating a free trade deal with Europe might be.
“But anybody who thinks this rally in the market, this ‘post-Trump bump’ as we’re calling it, is here to stay – it is for the short term – longer term, hold onto your hats.”
On covering Trump
Mr Trump has attacked Quest’s employers CNN many times, calling the network “terrible” and saying it runs “fake news”.
Quest says when you have a leader who has started a war with the media, who talks about ‘alternative facts’, then the press “has a job to do”.
“And it is nothing more grandiose than that. We can dress ourselves up with all sorts of pomposity and all sorts grandeur and robes but the reality is plain and simple: You put your kecks on, you put your hat on, you get your notebook out and you go out and do your job.
On the immigration ban
Quest says Mr Trump’s executive order to temporarily ban travellers from seven majority-Muslim countries and suspend its refugee programme was brought in without being fully vetted by all the relevant government departments and the natural effect of that is the chaos and confusion that followed.
He says a range of people and organisations have appealed the ban, including West coast tech companies Apple, Google and Microsoft and former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. The case will be heard in the ninth-circuit Court of Appeal on Tuesday (US time) and it will likely be kicked up to the Supreme Court.
On the wall
But amid all the uncertainty under the new regime, Quest says one thing is definite, Mr Trump’s promised wall between the US and Mexico will certainly happen.