×

Time is rapidly running out in Washington to make reforms, says political specialist

Concerns about the clock ticking on the U.S. administration's first year in office are growing as the initial hype over the breadth and speed of legislative changes to be effected has ceded to question marks over what the government will be able achieve this calendar year.

Given the impending holiday season, there is "no time left in Washington" to push through the legislative changes that markets and the broader population are anticipating, James D. Boys, political historian at Richmond University, told CNBC's Squawk Box on Tuesday.

"What Trump has achieved he has done so through executive orders effectively. Where he has singularly failed – along with the Republican party generally - is getting any sort of legislation through Congress," said Boys, contending that the president's Rose Garden celebration of getting the repeal of former President Barack Obama's healthcare bill through the House of Representatives was premature.

"It's pretty much dead on arrival in the United States' senate," Boys asserted.

Speaking more broadly, the Virginia-based political historian questioned the limited progress made to date given that the Republicans currently control the House of Representatives, the Senate and the White House.

"The amount of time left in Washington DC to get anything done in this session is rapidly running out. Then there's infrastructure, tax reform, all these other pet issues which of course were central," he observed.

Also expressing concerns over the elapsing timeline was Mark Weinberger, global chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) of EY, who told CNBC's Squawk Box last week that whether deregulation and tax reform actually gets done could "make or break the U.S. economy".

"There's only 80 legislative days left before the end of the calendar year and so they've got a lot of work to do to get this agenda off the ground," noted Weinberger, saying that the idea would be for the Republicans to return from August recess with a tax reform plan ready to start pushing through Congress.

"The conventional wisdom is in a second year of the president's term…it is harder to get these things done," he added.

Yet, a cause for optimism was highlighted by Swiss investment bank UBS in a note published last week in which the authors drew attention to a newly released report from the U.S. Treasury which details President Trump's plans for deregulating the financial sector.

According to the report, more than 100 changes are recommended, many of which do not require congressional support before enactment and include several items which should help to lessen costs for financial institutions, such as less onerous banking stress tests.

UBS envisages this should give the sector – which has rallied by 23 percent since the election of President Trump on November 8 last year – a further boost.

"We anticipate far better performance from U.S. financials in the current market cycle," concluded the note.

Clock in front of the Trump Tower
Hohlfeld | ullstein bild | Getty Images

Follow CNBC International on Twitter and Facebook.