The unifying thread in all of Trump’s actions is the aim to erase Obama’s signature achievements on fronts domestic and foreign. But beyond a political strategy, some Republicans see an effort to force a historically unproductive Congress to reassert authority.

“It’s not just a strategy,” said former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a Trump ally whose wife, Callista, has been nominated as the president’s ambassador to the Vatican. “What Obama did is illegal and unconstitutional and these are areas that Congress should solve.”

He added: “The president is returning power to the Congress — they should be happy.”