Trump’s 100 Days

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

During his first 100 days, President Donald Trump attempted to pass and change laws, nominate members for his cabinet, remove Obama appointees and battle it out with the media, along with a great many other things.

This, however, has been an uphill battle, as Democrats and Republicans rebel against the television star-turned commander in chief.

With the exception of signing a myriad of executive orders, presidential memorandums and executive agreements, Trump has accomplished little during a time when the world’s eyes were cast upon him.

Perhaps this is why the president was so eager to make an even bigger name for himself; it may have been his way of distancing himself from Russia after it was proven that they meddled in the election to help him take office.

It was only a few days after his swearing-in that Trump signed a series of executive orders that expedited the Dakota Access and the Keystone XL pipelines much to the dismay of environmentalists everywhere. This did not stop the president; he considered it a great victory.

Another accomplishment about which he boasts is his action in Syria. Trump made the “decisive decision” from a makeshift situation room at his Mar-a-Lago golf resort to attack Syrian forces.

On April 6, the United States launched a military strike on a Syrian government airbase in response to a chemical weapons attack that killed dozens of civilians earlier in the week. On Trump’s orders, US warships launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the airbase that was home to the warplanes that carried out the chemical attacks, U.S. officials said.

The president has the most number of vacation days of any president in their first 100 days. These trips are costing American taxpayers more than $20 million.

Trump also ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to formally review former President Barack Obama’s Clean Water Rule. Environmentalists believe this is his first step in eliminating or changing the rule. The Clean Water Rule ensures that waters protected under the Clean Water Act are more precisely defined, more predictably determined, and easier for businesses and industry to understand.

Trump had a difficult time getting his cabinet filled, with a few of his picks drawing ire from Americans across the spectrum. Many of Trump’s picks have no government experience and have been met with controversy.

Betsy DeVos, for example, has been criticized repeatedly for her lack of experience in public education. The Secretary of Education, who is still the brunt of jokes on late night talk shows, has so far done away with former First Lady Michelle Obama’s healthy schools program.

Rex Tillerson, the former CEO of Exxon Mobil, has no government experience and was named Department of State. Steven Mnuchin, a former senior executive at Goldman Sachs and a hedge fund manager who bought the failed mortgage lender IndyMac from the government in 2009, was named Treasury Secretary.

Senator Jeff Sessions was named to head the Department of Justice. Sessions has long been a staunch critic of illegal immigration and expanded legal immigration. He is a hardcore conservative and has opposed the Obama administration on nearly everything.

Former National Security Adviser Mike Flynn was another hit-and-miss for Trump. The U.S. Attorney General had to recuse himself from all investigations involving Russian interference in the 2016 election after it was revealed he had not disclosed meeting with the Russian ambassador to Vice President Mike Pence. He is not the only member of Trump’s cabinet who is facing trouble after dealings with Russia.

Flynn asked for a deal of immunity after it came out that he lied to Pence during his interviewing process. Flynn had previously criticized Hillary Clinton’s staff that sought immunity during an investigation into the Clinton campaign. Flynn reportedly said, “When you are given immunity, that means you have probably committed a crime.”

Trump’s major victory was getting his nominee for the Supreme Court, federal Judge Neil Gorsuch, confirmed to the Supreme Court when the position was vacated after Antonin Scalia died. The Senate triggered the “nuclear option” that allowed Republicans to break a Democratic filibuster. Obama’s nominee, Merrick Garland, was refused even a hearing by Senate Republicans.

The President’s orders to ban travelers from Muslim countries—which was struck down by judges in Hawaii and Maryland—had the support of many Americans and was a fulfillment of his campaign promise to keep “terrorists” out.

Trump has also been unable to build the Mexican border wall. After being unsuccessful at getting the Mexican government to pay for its construction, he promised that it will be built with taxpayer money and be paid back by Mexico—which the Mexican government has not agreed to do.

Trump has waged an all-out war with the free press, shutting out news organizations, calling legacy news organizations like the New York Times “failing” and “fake news,” and making recent public statements that he plans to change libel laws so that he can have an easier time suing news organizations.

His plan to end the Affordable Care Act, known to Americans as Obamacare, was stalled in Congress and is continuously under attack by Democrats. Supporters of former President Obama’s signature accomplishment continue to rally on behalf of the millions who would lose health coverage should it be removed.

Last week, House Republicans failed to get the support needed to pass an amended health care bill and went back to make more concessions. Today, the House of Representatives narrowly passed a healthcare bill aimed at undoing Obamacare. The 217-213 vote is a win for Trump who promised during his campaign to repeal and replace former President Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

Twenty Republicans voted against the legislation, and all Democrats rejected the bill. The bill faces an uphill battle in the Senate. “It’s going to an unbelievable victory when we get it through the Senate,” Trump said at a press conference following the House vote.

Although President Trump has yet to accomplish his many campaign promises, 100 days is a small amount of time compared to the next four, and possibly eight years of his presidency.