Evaluating Trump's first 100 days — on his own terms
We checked Trump's accomplishments against the 30 things he’d promised to do by now
Of Trump’s roughly 30 concrete pledges, he has arguably just accomplished three of them, making progress on only a handful more. Some, like the Muslim ban and Obamacare repeal, have experienced embarrassing setbacks and unforced errors. You can read a detailed annotation of Trump’s pledges below.
Donald Trump's 100-day plan, as delivered on October 22, 2016, in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
What follows is my 100-day action plan to Make America Great Again. It is a contract between myself and the American voter — and begins with restoring honesty, accountability and change to Washington.
Therefore, on the first day of my term of office, my administration will immediately pursue the following six measures to clean up the corruption and special interest collusion in Washington, DC:
* FIRST, propose a Constitutional Amendment to impose term limits on all members of Congress;1
Over the course of his first 100 days, Trump's No. 1 promise for cleaning up corruption in Washington has gone from a pie-in-the-sky proposal with no chance of passing … to a pie-in-the-sky proposal with no chance of passing.
Passing a constitutional amendment requires a two-thirds majority in both the House and the Senate, as well as ratification by three-fourths of all states in the union. But even Republican Party leaders couldn’t be bothered to feign interest in this idea, which would limit House members to two terms and senators to three. Trump's restrictions would force more than half of the current members of Congress to retire.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) declared it dead on arrival less than a week after the election. "I would say we have term limits now," he told the New York Times. "They're called elections. And it will not be on the agenda in the Senate."
Jeff Stein, @JStein_Vox
* SECOND, a hiring freeze on all federal employees1 to reduce federal workforce through attrition (exempting military, public safety, and public health);
Trump can say he kept this promise, at least for a little while. One of his first actions, on the Monday after taking office, was to order a federal hiring freeze. But his order excluded federal jobs deemed “necessary to meet national security or public safety responsibilities,” like uniformed military positions, for instance.
Confusion ensued over which jobs could be considered essential to national security and public safety. The Department of Veterans Affairs was particularly upset about the hiring freeze, and begged Trump in January to exempt their employees, to ensure they could provide critical services to military veterans. Later that month, the administration released further details about which jobs were exempt, expanding it to seasonal workers and the entire US Postal Service.
The hiring freeze lasted roughly two months before Trump revoked it altogether on April 12. His administration said they would instead focus on a "smarter plan, a more strategic plan, a more surgical plan,” which would involve hiring more in some departments and less in others. Two of the federal agencies Trump wants to shrink: the Environmental Protection Agency and the State Department. The Pentagon and Department of Veterans Affairs, on the other hand, don’t seem to have much to worry about.
Alexia Fernández Campbell, @AlexiaCampbell
* THIRD, a requirement that for every new federal regulation, two existing regulations must be eliminated;1
On January 30, with much fanfare, Trump rolled out an executive order he claimed would fulfill this campaign promise. But in fact, the order does nothing of the kind — Trump’s order merely calls on agencies to “identify” two rules they think could be eliminated.
Despite what Trump says, his order doesn’t require that these older rules actually be struck down. That’s because rolling back a regulation is often procedurally and legally difficult, and takes a good deal of time. So in practice, Trump’s order will likely deter new rules somewhat, but its main impact will probably be causing confusion in regulatory agencies, as Vox’s Brad Plumer explains.
Andrew Prokop, @awprokop
* FOURTH, a 5 year-ban on White House and Congressional officials becoming lobbyists1 after they leave government service;
Trump accomplished this one — sort of. On January 28, he signed an executive order on ethics that included a five-year ban on former White House officials lobbying the government. (It didn’t include congressional staff.) But there’s a big catch: They were only prevented from lobbying the agency they worked for. They could still lobby other parts of government. Trump also watered down a requirement from the Obama administration that all former officials wait at least two years before contacting their former agencies, reducing it to one. And waivers from the anti-lobbying rule will still be permitted, but, unlike under Obama, they’ll no longer be public.
The verdict from ethics experts: Trump fulfilled the letter of his promise but not the spirit, and President Obama’s ethics requirements for his administration were stronger than Trump’s revised version.
Libby Nelson, @libbyanelson
* FIFTH, a lifetime ban on White House officials lobbying on behalf of a foreign government;1
On paper, the administration has followed through on this one. Just eight days after his inauguration, Trump signed an executive order requiring White House officials to sign an ethics pledge as a condition of employment, in which they agree to oblige by nine different ethical commitments. The fourth is the one that applies here. It states:
“I will not, at any time after the termination of my employment in the United States Government, engage in any activity on behalf of any foreign government or foreign political party which, were it undertaken on January 20, 2017, would require me to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938, as amended.”
The order authorizes the attorney general to investigate anyone believed to have violated the ethics pledge and to initiate civil action against the person if the case warrants. However, because this is an executive order and not a law (presidents can’t pass laws on their own; that’s what Congress is for), the order doesn’t establish any sort of criminal penalties for those who violate the pledge.
And there’s another part that makes it potentially even more toothless: The order includes a clause allowing "the president or his designee” to grant waivers to anyone who has signed the pledge, but doesn’t say anything about the circumstances under which a waiver might be granted. So if the president feels like it, he can basically give a waiver to anyone he wants.
Zack Beauchamp, @zackbeauchamp
* SIXTH, a complete ban on foreign lobbyists raising money for American elections.1
It’s not fully clear what this policy means. Federal law already prohibits foreign nationals from “contributing, donating or spending funds in connection with any federal, state, or local election in the United States, either directly or indirectly.” However, under the current law, foreign nationals are allowed to “volunteer personal services to a federal candidate or federal political committee without making a contribution,” as long as they don’t get paid for doing it. So, for instance, a foreign university student could volunteer to canvass for a presidential campaign and it would be legal, as long as nobody (be it the campaign, a foreign government, a lobbying firm, or anyone else) pays them for their work.
Since federal law already covers this, it’s not clear what exactly Trump is pledging to do here. It’s possible he could be talking about banning US citizens who are employed as foreign lobbyists from fundraising in US elections. Under current law, US citizens are allowed to do that; they just have to register with the federal government as “foreign agents” and disclose which country they’re working for, what kind of work they’re doing, and how much they’re getting paid to do it. The point here is transparency, so that American voters can (at least in theory) easily figure out which of their fellow citizens are getting paid by foreign countries to influence US politics.
If that is what Trump is interested in reforming — if he wants to make it illegal for US citizens to work as foreign lobbyists — it would require Congress to pass a law changing that. He couldn’t just do it by executive order. But so far, the Trump administration hasn’t made any indication whatsoever that they’re pursuing legislation on this.
If anything, Trump’s own actions have suggested just the opposite. In November 2016, reporters uncovered evidence that Michael Flynn, one of Trump’s top foreign policy advisers, had received money from a Turkish businessman to lobby on behalf of the country. Trump knew all of that but appointed him national security adviser anyway. In March, four months after those reports, Flynn formally registered as a foreign agent and admitted to doing paid pro-Turkey work.
The fact that Trump seems to have known — and not cared — that Flynn was lobbying on behalf of a foreign government while he was working on Trump’s campaign suggests that Trump may not be super committed to pursuing legislation to make that kind of activity illegal.
Zack Beauchamp, @zackbeauchamp
On the same day, I will begin taking the following 7 actions to protect American workers:
* FIRST, I will announce my intention to renegotiate NAFTA or withdraw from the deal under Article 22051
Trump pledged to either renegotiate the 23-year-old free trade deal between the US, Canada, and Mexico in order to make it more favorable to American workers or withdraw from the deal altogether. He has done neither.
What he has done so far is circulate a draft proposal informing Congress of his intent to initiate negotiations with Canada and Mexico over NAFTA and laying out the specific objectives he wants to achieve through these negotiations. These include several fairly uncontroversial items like developing rules regarding e-commerce, digital sales, and data housing requirements and tightening labor and environmental regulations, which Canada and Mexico are likely to be open to.
But they also include some more contentious proposals that are likely to face strong pushback from the other two countries, such as allowing countries to apply emergency tariffs in order to preserve industries particularly hard hit by competition and new rules allowing the US to preference American companies over Canadian and Mexican ones when it comes to government procurement contracts.
However, it was just a draft, and it doesn't necessarily reflect the administration's final stance. Complicating things further, just this past week the administration leaked to the press that it was drafting an executive order to pull the US out of NAFTA, but then hours later assured Canada and Mexico on a phone call that it was committed to renegotiation. It's unclear if the administration was using scare tactics as a bargaining chip, or if it hasn't made up its mind on its approach.
* SECOND, I will announce our withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership1
Donald Trump kept this promise just three days into his presidency when he signed an executive order directing an end to negotiations over the controversial trade deal. On the campaign trail, he denounced the deal as a “disaster done and pushed by special interests who want to rape our country.” Liberal critics like Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) made similar points, arguing that the deal tilted the trading system in favor of drug companies, Wall Street, and other powerful interest groups.
In practice, Trump’s move was a formality. Even before the November election, President Obama struggled to get the deal approved by Congress. After Trump’s victory, there was no chance of Congress approving the deal regardless of what Trump did.
The deal might go forward without American participation. The Financial Times recently reported that Japan is planning to restart talks with other TPP countries. China has also been promoting a rival trade agreement called the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership that would give China a more central role in Asian trade.
Timothy B. Lee, @binarybits
* THIRD, I will direct my Secretary of the Treasury to label China a currency manipulator1
Not only has Trump not followed through on this, but he has completely reversed his position. On day 83 of his presidency, he declared in an interview with the Wall Street Journal that his Treasury Department would not be declaring China a currency manipulator at all.
The move was a stunning reversal, and averted what many economic observers feared could’ve been the opening gambit of a punishing sanctions regime on China. If the administration had blacklisted China as a currency cheat, it would have required the Treasury Department to open negotiations with Beijing to try to get it to change its currency and trade practices. If a satisfactory solution wasn’t reached, the US government would’ve had license to impose tariffs on China. That in turn could have been the opening salvo of a trade war between the countries.
What caused him to change his mind? According to the Journal, there are two main reasons. First, Trump said he believes China hasn’t been manipulating its currency for months (that’s partially right: China hasn’t been holding down the yuan for years), and he’s worried that labeling the country a currency manipulator would interfere with his ability to cooperate with Beijing on the threat posed by an increasingly belligerent North Korea.
* FOURTH, I will direct the Secretary of Commerce and U.S. Trade Representative to identify all foreign trading abuses that unfairly impact American workers1 and direct them to use every tool under American and international law to end those abuses immediately
Although he reversed himself on declaring China a currency manipulator, Trump has taken some initial steps to crack down on trade abuses in other areas.
In March, he signed two executive orders designed to deter unfair trade practices. The more modest one seeks to strengthen US agencies’ ability to collect fees from other countries for violating international trade rules. The other one commissions a report that surveys the US’s trade deficits with its biggest trading partners and assesses how much of them are due to unfair practices.
But it remains to be seen what actions that report might trigger.
* FIFTH, I will lift the restrictions on the production of $50 trillion dollars' worth of job-producing American energy reserves,1 including shale, oil, natural gas and clean coal.
Trump has taken some action on this score, but it is almost all for show — none of it (yet) will result in any new energy production or create any new jobs. (The $50 trillion figure appears to be completely arbitrary.)
The big item here is that Trump, through Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, lifted Obama’s moratorium on the issuing of new coal mining leases on public land. More consequentially, Zinke canceled the comprehensive review of the coal leasing program begun under his predecessor. Thus, the program will resume, using procedures and prices that the government itself has identified as a taxpayer rip-off.
And it’s mostly for nothing. Coal is taking a beating on the market and companies are already awash in reserves. Coal companies are not demanding new leases; they’ve even recently canceled some lease requests.
For the same reason, Trump’s repeal of Obama’s EPA rules on stream pollution is unlikely to spark new mining (just new pollution).
Trump is also reportedly preparing an EO that would roll back Obama’s protections of Arctic and US Atlantic waters from offshore drilling.
* SIXTH, lift the Obama-Clinton roadblocks and allow vital energy infrastructure projects, like the Keystone Pipeline, to move forward1
In January, Trump signed a series of executive orders meant to follow through on this promise.
Per his instruction, the State Department has granted a permit for the Keystone XL pipeline to cross the US-Canadian border (the permit Obama denied), though many legal challenges stand between the pipeline and completion.
Trump also ordered the Army Corps of Engineers to expedite its review of the hotly contested Dakota Access pipeline. But that review is still unfinished, and it’s unclear how long the corps will take and what it will decide.
The other EOs simply instruct the commerce secretary to look into how to expedite permitting and “reduce regulatory burdens.” It’s being done through “outreach to stakeholders,” which is a euphemism for asking the Chamber of Commerce and other business interests what they want. That outreach has resulted in an industry wish list from which the administration will presumably be operating. It heavily targets EPA regulations.
Trump is also reportedly working with a list of infrastructure projects — ”Priority List: Emergency & National Security Projects” — that his administration will prioritize, which includes a natural gas pipeline but also several “greener” projects like transmission lines, hydropower plants, and wind farms.
* SEVENTH, cancel billions in payments to U.N. climate change programs1 and use the money to fix America's water and environmental infrastructure
Trump’s policy toward international climate negotiations and the Paris climate accord remain hotly contested. Meetings on whether to stay in the agreement have been scheduled and rescheduled, and a decision, allegedly, is coming in early May.
For now, most people are betting that Trump will decide to stay in Paris, at least formally. Too many business interests and members of his own party are leery of the consequences of pulling out. For the same reason, Trump is unlikely to take the more extreme step of withdrawing the US from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change entirely.
But the money will almost certainly dry up. Obama pledged $3 billion to the UN Green Climate Fund, which helps poorer countries reduce their emissions. In March, his administration sent $500 million. Just before he left office, he sent another $500 million.
That’s $1 billion. Trump’s budget pledges to “cease payments to the United Nations’ (UN) climate change programs by eliminating U.S. funding related to the Green Climate Fund and its two precursor Climate Investment Funds.” That will be an enormous blow to the fund and set back carbon mitigation in the countries that suffer from climate change the most.
Additionally, on the first day, I will take the following five actions to restore security and the constitutional rule of law:
* FIRST, cancel every unconstitutional executive action, memorandum and order issued by President Obama1
Conveniently, this “first day” promise did not specify which allegedly “unconstitutional” executive actions Trump was referring to. But suffice to say, there was no lineup of obviously unconstitutional Obama orders that Trump was ready and willing to roll back on day one.
Over time, Trump has canceled some executive actions that conservatives have harshly criticized, like the Obama administration’s guidance that trans students in federally funded public schools be protected under federal civil rights law.
However, he has left others untouched — most notably, the DACA program that protects unauthorized immigrants who came to the US as children, which Trump has seemed hesitant to roll back. And on others, like whether he’d continue to defend and implement Obamacare’s cost-sharing reduction payments, he’s sent mixed signals.
Andrew Prokop, @awprokop
* SECOND, begin the process of selecting a replacement for Justice Scalia1 from one of the 20 judges on my list, who will uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States
Donald Trump hasn't gotten a lot of pure, non-Pyrrhic victories in his first 100 days. But there's one thing he promised to do, and did, quite rapidly and with minimal drama: He filled Justice Antonin Scalia’s Supreme Court seat with a solid conservative, ensuring the persistence of a five-member center-right majority on the Court for years to come.
Trump had help, of course. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell embarked on an ambitious, unprecedented strategy of refusing to even hold hearings for Merrick Garland, President Obama's pick for the seat. Throughout most of the presidential campaign, the effort seemed absurd. If Hillary Clinton had won, McConnell would've just been postponing the inevitable. The only way in which the strategy made sense was if Donald Trump won — and did establishment conservatives like McConnell even want that?
It appears they did — not least because Trump's win meant McConnell's efforts paid off. So did those of Federalist Society executive vice president Leonard Leo, whom the Trump campaign enlisted to help vet candidates throughout the selection process, and who ensured that anyone Trump picked was going to be a down-the-line, doctrinaire conservative committed to overturning Roe v. Wade.
Gorsuch is already making his presence on the Court felt, joining with the three other conservatives (plus the mostly conservative but pro-choice and pro-gay Anthony Kennedy) to let Arkansas execute a man who was denied a DNA test that could prove his innocence, and whose defense attorney at trial was so drunk he slurred his words. By contrast, a Court with Garland appeared set to either end or radically restrict capital punishment. Trump's biggest victory is already having huge, life-or-death consequences.
Dylan Matthews, @dylanmatt
* THIRD, cancel all federal funding to Sanctuary Cities1
Mere days before the 100-day mark, the Trump administration suffered an embarrassing court defeat on this count — a federal judge in the Northern District of California (siding with cities and counties that had sued the federal government) blocked the Trump administration from doing anything to deny funds to cities and counties based on whether they counted as “sanctuaries.”
Per an executive order signed the first week of Trump’s presidency, the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice had been working on defining how much a city would have to limit assistance to federal immigration agents to count as a “sanctuary.” The plan was then to bar at least some federal grants from going to cities that met that definition. This wasn’t on pace to happen within the first 100 days. Now it can’t happen until the courts have had more time to judge whether the policy would be constitutional — and for the administration to win the court battle, it’s probably going to have to step back from the hardline “all federal funding” stance.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions has started to move forward on defunding with a much more limited definition of “sanctuary” than the one the administration uses rhetorically. He’s threatened a handful of cities with ineligibility for some future law enforcement grants unless they prove they comply with a federal information-sharing law. It’s possible, though, that Sessions’s efforts won’t result in any grants actually being withheld — a very far cry from “all federal funding” indeed.
* FOURTH, begin removing the more than 2 million criminal illegal immigrants from the country1 and cancel visas to foreign countries that won't take them back2
Cut a few keywords out of this promise and you have what is indisputably the main policy accomplishment of the Trump administration to date: “... removing … more … illegal immigrants from the country.” The Trump administration has pointedly stepped up arrests and deportations of unauthorized immigrants living in the US who were already known to immigration agents. Some of those were immigrants with (usually long-past or minor) criminal convictions; however, it appears the biggest increase under Trump has been in arrests of immigrants who had previous orders of deportation.
The administration isn’t engaging in wholesale roundups of unauthorized immigrants — but it’s not limiting itself to “criminal illegal immigrants” (of which there were never 2 million, and which the Obama administration often deported) either. But by blurring the line between “criminal” and “illegal,” the administration has given itself a way to downplay the fear its policies have created in immigrant communities while communicating, clearly, that no immigrant is necessarily safe.
This is actually the rare thing that Trump could have done fairly easily, and hasn’t yet. There are precedents for suspending visas (usually diplomatic visas) when countries have a history of refusing to accept deportees. It’s not clear whether the Trump administration is still working on figuring out which countries are being uncooperative enough to merit sanctions, or if this is an idea they’ve simply dropped.
* FIFTH, suspend immigration from terror-prone regions where vetting cannot safely occur. All vetting of people coming into our country will be considered extreme vetting.1
Well, you can’t say they didn’t try.
The Trump administration has made not one but two attempts to temporarily ban people from certain countries from entering the US, in the name of “extreme vetting.” When the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a decision to put the first ban on hold while the courts considered its constitutionality, the administration put out a revised executive order designed to address the legal problems with the first one — then that order also got put on hold, the night before it was supposed to go into effect, due to rulings in Maryland and Hawaii.
While the Trump administration tries to litigate what’s become known as the “travel ban,” it appears to be moving forward on tightening vetting procedures for everyone else — Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has told consular officials to identify particular populations that might require “extreme vetting,” and the administration is floating proposals to ask visa applicants for access to their social media accounts and for exhaustive work and residential information. But the State Department appears to be moving cautiously on those policies, partly because of the pending court case over the travel ban.
Next, I will work with Congress to introduce the following broader legislative measures and fight for their passage within the first 100 days of my Administration:
1. Middle Class Tax Relief And Simplification Act.1 An economic plan designed to grow the economy 4% per year and create at least 25 million new jobs through massive tax reduction and simplification, in combination with trade reform, regulatory relief, and lifting the restrictions on American energy. The largest tax reductions are for the middle class. A middle-class family with 2 children will get a 35% tax cut. The current number of brackets will be reduced from 7 to 3, and tax forms will likewise be greatly simplified. The business rate will be lowered from 35 to 15 percent, and the trillions of dollars of American corporate money overseas can now be brought back at a 10 percent rate.
Trump has, clearly, not introduced the legislation described in his 100 days pledge, nor any other specific tax reform legislation. On Wednesday, his team released a vague one-page statement of principles echoing his campaign promises on taxes. But it’s hardly a real plan, and far from something that could actually be introduced as a bill. Meanwhile, House Republicans have been working on a tax reform framework that seems fairly different in its conceptual underpinnings from the legislation Trump alluded to here, including the transformation of the corporate income tax into a form of border-adjusted consumption tax.
2. End The Offshoring Act.1 Establishes tariffs to discourage companies from laying off their workers in order to relocate in other countries and ship their products back to the U.S. tax-free.
Trump promised to pass legislation that would punish companies that move American manufacturing jobs overseas with harsh tariffs. Congress has passed no such law, and Trump has made no visible moves to have a bill drafted in Congress or to whip up public support for a bill of this kind.
Trump has used his Twitter account to criticize companies for opening factories abroad. Back in December (that is, before he took office), he slammed Carrier for trying to shift some of its operations from Indiana to Mexico. Trump convinced the company to keep the factory in the US (a deal that was sweetened with the promise of several million dollars in tax credits from the state of Indiana) and claimed a victory against offshoring.
And in the following months, other manufacturers seemed to be slowing their flow of jobs south of the border as well, evidently out of fear of being singled out by the president.
But Trump’s Twitter attention seems to be elsewhere these days — and manufacturers appear to be shipping jobs to Mexico again at a rapid pace.
3. American Energy & Infrastructure Act.1 Leverages public-private partnerships, and private investments through tax incentives, to spur $1 trillion in infrastructure investment over 10 years. It is revenue neutral.
Nothing has happened on infrastructure so far. On the campaign trail, Trump floated a plan to offer some $137 billion in tax breaks to private investors who want to finance toll roads or other projects that generate their own revenue streams. This unusual plan, he vowed, would spur $1 trillion in investment over 10 years.
But Congress hasn’t touched it. While Democrats have expressed interest in upgrading America’s infrastructure, they’d prefer the government spend the money directly on roads and transit, as is traditionally done, rather than giving tax breaks to investors. Republicans, meanwhile, have shown zero appetite for a big new spending bill, and haven’t even bothered to craft their own legislation. While Trump keeps insisting that he’d like to make infrastructure a top priority, there’s little sign that he’s working hard on the issue and little chance that a bill will get done anytime soon.
Brad Plumer, @bradplumer
4. School Choice And Education Opportunity Act.1 Redirects education dollars to give parents the right to send their kid to the public, private, charter, magnet, religious or home school of their choice. Ends common core, brings education supervision to local communities. It expands vocational and technical education, and make 2 and 4-year college more affordable.
This bill, Trump promised in October, would do several things dear to the conservative movement. It would “give parents the right to send their kid to the public, private, charter, magnet, religious or home school of their choice.” Not only that, it would also “end Common Core,” the shared expectations for what kids should know and be able to do in reading and math that the Obama administration pushed states to adopt. The same bill, Trump promised, would expand vocational education and make college more affordable.
So far, it’s amounted to nothing. The bill hasn’t become law. It hasn’t even been introduced. One obstacle might be that what Trump promised is a lot of policy to cram into one act of Congress. (It’s typical, for example, to separate out higher education policy from K-12.) Another obstacle is that Congress can’t just create nationwide school choice or get rid of Common Core by waving a legislative wand. States still make the majority of education policy in the US. Congress doesn’t seem interested, so far, in pulling a lever to change that.
Libby Nelson, @libbyanelson
5. Repeal and Replace Obamacare Act.1 Fully repeals Obamacare and replaces it with Health Savings Accounts, the ability to purchase health insurance across state lines, and lets states manage Medicaid funds. Reforms will also include cutting the red tape at the FDA: there are over 4,000 drugs awaiting approval, and we especially want to speed the approval of life-saving medications.
Repealing and replacing Obamacare was among the Trump administration’s most high-profile campaign promises, repeated at rallies and in television interviews. “We’re going to repeal and replace Obamacare from day one, we’re going to do it,” Trump said at a February 2016 campaign event. At one point, he said it might happen the “same hour” as his health and human services secretary was confirmed.
But 100 days into his presidency, Trump is nowhere near wiping Obamacare off the books. While he did sign an executive order targeting the law on his first day in office, his administration had limited leeway to undercut the law on its own. Congressional Republicans can’t agree about what should replace Obama’s health law. The health bill they offered in February, the American Health Care Act, was universally panned by conservative groups (who felt it did far too little to repeal Obamacare) and liberals (who felt it did far too much). The debate over AHCA lasted a mere 17 days, ending with a canceled House vote when Republican leadership realized it did not have enough support to pass.
The one thing Trump has achieved on health care, it seems, is to make Obamacare more popular. The law now has its highest approval ratings since Congress began debating it in 2009.
Sarah Kliff, @sarahkliff
6. Affordable Childcare and Eldercare Act.1 Allows Americans to deduct childcare and elder care from their taxes, incentivizes employers to provide on-side childcare services, and creates tax-free Dependent Care Savings Accounts for both young and elderly dependents, with matching contributions for low-income families.
Ivanka Trump has had some meetings on Capitol Hill on this subject, but fundamentally nothing has happened. And the White House certainly hasn’t released draft legislation or found sponsors for this idea in Congress.
The White House’s “skinny” budget proposal didn’t indicate any interest in supporting child care or elder care affordability, nor does it appear to be a priority in the Trump administration’s negotiations over funding the government. Trump’s tax plan promised “tax relief for families with child and dependent care expenses,” but didn’t elaborate on any details.
7. End Illegal Immigration Act.1 Fully-funds the construction of a wall on our southern border with the full understanding that the country Mexico will be reimbursing the United States for the full cost of such wall; establishes a 2-year mandatory minimum federal prison sentence for illegally re-entering the U.S. after a previous deportation, and a 5-year mandatory minimum for illegally re-entering for those with felony convictions, multiple misdemeanor convictions or two or more prior deportations; also reforms visa rules to enhance penalties for overstaying and to ensure open jobs are offered to American workers first.
Forget “fully funding” the border wall (no one agrees on how much it would cost anyway) — the Trump administration has had trouble drumming up enthusiasm among congressional Republicans for a supplemental spending bill to put a few billion dollars toward starting wall construction this year.
It’s even harder to imagine the administration pushing through the legislative changes it wants — not because it’s asking for anything too ambitious or unpopular, but simply because Congress has its own ideas about priorities for 2017 and 2018. When the White House and the legislative branch can’t even agree on how to pass the things that both of them agree are important — health care and tax reform — it’s hard to imagine the End Illegal Immigration Act won’t be consigned to the graveyard of an overambitious White House agenda.
8. Restoring Community Safety Act.1 Reduces surging crime, drugs and violence by creating a Task Force On Violent Crime and increasing funding for programs that train and assist local police; increases resources for federal law enforcement agencies and federal prosecutors to dismantle criminal gangs and put violent offenders behind bars.
President Trump has not formally proposed his Restoring Community Safety Act in Congress. He did, however, sign a series of executive orders related to public safety. While these don’t actually change any specific policies, they did set up task forces to give proposals to reduce crime (specifically “illegal immigration, drug trafficking, and violent crime”), develop a strategy to reduce murders of police officers, and create a plan to go after international drug cartels. The orders for these task forces adopt a lot of the “tough on crime” language that Trump used on the campaign trail. But whether they will actually lead to any changes remains to be seen.
German Lopez, @germanrlopez
9. Restoring National Security Act.1 Rebuilds our military by eliminating the defense sequester and expanding military investment; provides Veterans with the ability to receive public VA treatment or attend the private doctor of their choice; protects our vital infrastructure from cyber-attack; establishes new screening procedures for immigration to ensure those who are admitted to our country support our people and our values
Trump has proposed a $54 billion increase in defense spending for next year, but Congress holds the purse strings. Many lawmakers, including Republicans, have balked at the domestic spending cuts proposed by the White House to offset the increase in the defense budget.
Trump has signed a bill temporarily extending an existing program that allows veterans to receive health care from private practices if they face a long wait at the VA. A more permanent plan is reportedly in the works, but is not expected until the fall.
Drafts of an order to bolster US cybersecurity have been leaked over the past few months, but nothing has actually been signed. Trump also promised a White House plan to combat cyberattacks, including from nation-states, but none has been released or seems imminent.
Lastly, he ordered and tried to implement a ban on people coming to United States from several majority-Muslim countries. But his order has been held up by the courts while they fully consider whether it unconstitutionally targeted a specific religion.
Dylan Scott, @dylanlscott
10. Clean up Corruption in Washington Act.1 Enacts new ethics reforms to Drain the Swamp and reduce the corrupting influence of special interests on our politics.
Even by the standards of a 100 days pledge, this campaign promise was astoundingly vague. Trump promised some form of totally unspecified legislation that would feature “new ethics reforms to drain the swamp and reduce the corrupting influence of special interests on our politics.”
Pretty much any legislation touching on government ethics in any way could, in theory, be construed as fulfilling this pledge. But Trump has not introduced any legislation touching on government ethics in any way.
On November 8th, Americans will be voting for this 100-day plan to restore prosperity to our economy, security to our communities, and honesty to our government.
This is my pledge to you.
And if we follow these steps, we will once more have a government of, by and for the people.