Saturday 22 July 2017

Trump's first 100 days in office: How many of his 38 proposals has he delivered on?

Donald Trump has signed the most executive orders of any president in his first 100 days since the Second World War
Donald Trump has signed the most executive orders of any president in his first 100 days since the Second World War

Emily Shugerman

Less than one month before election day, Donald Trump addressed a crowd of supporters in historic Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Candidate Trump promised the crowd that, if elected, he would carry out every proposal laid out in his “Contract with the American Voter” – a 100-day, 38-prong plan to “restore prosperity to our economy, security to our communities, and honesty to our government.”

In an interview this month with the Associated Press, President Trump referred to the plan not as a contract, but as a “concept” that “somebody put out”.

“I'm mostly there on most items,” he said.

Trump's contract with voters ahead of the election
Trump's contract with voters ahead of the election

According to The Independent’s tally, Mr Trump has fully achieved seven of his 38 proposals. Others have been partially completed; some are impossible to quantify.

Below is a step-by-step review of every proposal Mr Trump made in his contract – and whether he has succeeded in his promise to carry them out by his 100th day in office.

Promise: Impose a hiring freeze on federal employees.

Completed? Sort of. Mr Trump ordered a hiring freeze – with exemptions for military personnel, national security and public safety – on 24 January. He lifted it fewer than three months later, on 12 April. Mick Mulvaney, director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, said the hiring freeze had been replaced by a “smarter plan, a more strategic plan.”

Promise: Propose a Constitutional Amendment to impose term limits on all members of Congress.

Completed? No.

Promise: Impose a requirement that for every new federal regulation, two existing regulations must be eliminated.

Completed? Yes. Mr Trump issued an executive order in January declaring “whenever an executive department or agency publicly proposes for notice and comment or otherwise promulgates a new regulation, it shall identify at least two existing regulations to be repealed.”

Promise: Impose a five-year ban on White House and Congressional officials becoming lobbyists after they leave government service.

Completed? Kind of. Mr Trump issued an order requiring all executive appointees to pledge not to lobby for their agencies for five years. The order excludes congressional officials, and only limits lobbying for the agency in which the appointee served – not lobbying in general.

President Donald Trump speaks during the National Rifle Association event (AP)
President Donald Trump speaks during the National Rifle Association event (AP)
US president Donald Trump Photo: AP

Promise: Impose a lifetime ban on White House officials lobbying on behalf of a foreign government.

Completed? Yes. The same executive order prevents executive appointees from lobbying on behalf of foreign governments.

Promise: Impose a complete ban on foreign lobbyists raising money for American elections.

Completed? No.

Promise: Renegotiate Nafta or withdraw from the deal under Article 2205.

Completed? Sort of. Mr Trump has met with leaders from Mexico and Canada to discuss renegotiating the agreement, and this month he implemented his first tariffs against Canada. He has also required the US Department of Commerce and US Trade Representative to examine all the factors that contribute to the US trade deficit and submit a report on their findings. But just this week, he told leaders from Mexico and Canada he would not be withdrawing from the deal – yet.

Promise: Announce our withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

Completed? Yes. Mr Trump announced the US’s withdrawal from the TPP on 23 January.

Promise: Direct my secretary of the treasury to label China a currency manipulator

Completed? No. Mr Trump has reversed course on labelling the country a China manipulator, citing Chinese President Xi Jinping’s help in dealing with North Korea.

Promise: Direct the Secretary of Commerce and US Trade Representative to identify all foreign trading abuses that unfairly impact American workers and direct them to use every tool under American and international law to end those abuses immediately.

Completed? Yes. Mr Trump is requiring his agency heads to conduct numerous such reviews. The “Buy American and Hire American” executive order, for example, requires the secretary of commerce and the US trade representative to “assess the impacts of all United States free trade agreements and the World Trade Organization Agreement,” among other things.

Promise: Lift the restrictions on the production of $50 trillion dollars’ worth of job-producing American energy reserves, including shale, oil, natural gas and clean coal.

Completed? Kind of. Mr Trump has rescinded multiple Obama-era environmental executive orders, including one that prevented coal mining on federal lands and one that precluded mines from dumping waste into waterways. But how much money this plan will generate has yet to be seen, and the $50 trillion estimate appears to be inflated from the original Institute for Energy Research study.

Promise: Lift the Obama-Clinton roadblocks and allow vital energy infrastructure projects, like the Keystone Pipeline, to move forward.

Completed? Yes. Trump greenlighted the Keystone Pipeline in January.

Promise: Cancel billions in payments to UN climate change programmes and use the money to fix America’s water and environmental infrastructure.

Completed? Kind of. Mr Trump’s proposed 2018 budget would eliminate the Global Climate Change Initiative and all US funding to the Green Climate Fund. But Congress is the one that controls the purse strings, and they generally view the President's budget simply as a starting point.

Promise: Cancel every unconstitutional executive action, memorandum and order issued by President Obama.

Completed? Who knows. It’s impossible to know now which orders, actions and memorandum Mr Trump considered “unconstitutional”. Mr Trump has rolled back a small fraction of Mr Obama’s 276 executive orders and 257 memoranda, including those on international abortions, historically black colleges and universities, and the aforementioned orders on climate change.

Promise: Begin the process of selecting a replacement for Justice Scalia from one of the 20 judges on my list.

Completed? Yes. The Senate confirmed Judge Neil Gorsuch as a Supreme Court Justice on 7 April. Mr Gorsuch was on the list of potential nominees Mr Trump released before the election.

Promise: Suspend immigration from terror-prone regions where vetting cannot safely occur.

Completed? No. Mr Trump’s executive order banning immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries was blocked by two separate federal judges. The revised order is currently subject to a temporary restraining order issued by a federal judge in Hawaii.

Promise: Cancel all federal funding to sanctuary cities.

Completed? No. Mr Trump’s order barring funding to cities that do not cooperate with federal immigration enforcement authorities was blocked by a federal judge. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said the Justice Department will continue to litigate the case.

Promise: Begin removing the more than 2 million criminal illegal immigrants from the country and cancel visas to foreign countries that won’t take them back.

Completed? Sort of. Deportations can take months to complete, so it’s difficult to say exactly how many people Mr Trump has deported. Immigration arrests did increase in Mr Trump’s first weeks in office, by more than 30 per cent. But that included a two-fold increase in arrests of undocumented immigrants without a criminal record, too.

Promise: Introduce the Middle Class Tax Relief And Simplification Act, with “massive tax reduction and simplification”.

Completed? No. Mr Trump revealed a one-page outline of proposed tax reforms on 26 April. Mr Trump’s chief economic adviser called the proposal a “broad brush view” of what the final legislation will be.

Promise: Introduce the End The Offshoring Act, which would impose 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”.

Completed? No.

Promise: Introduce the American Energy & Infrastructure Act, a 10-year plan to spur infrastructure development through public-private partnerships and private investments.

Completed? No.

Promise: Introduce the School Choice And Education Opportunity Act to end common core, expand vocational and technical education, make two- and four-year colleges more affordable, and let parents send their children to the school of their choosing.

Completed? No. A similar bill, introduced by Representative Andy Biggs, is currently in committee. Mr Trump has not expressed his support for the legislation.

Promise: Introduce the Repeal and Replace Obamacare Act.

Completed? Yes, but... While Mr Trump did work with House Republicans on a plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, he wound up asking for it to be pulled from a vote after hardline conservatives withheld their support. It was one of the biggest blows to Mr Trump’s legislative agenda yet.

Promise: Introduce the Affordable Childcare and Eldercare Act, allowing families to deduct childcare and elder care from their taxes, incentivising employers to provide on-site childcare, and creating tax-free Dependent Care Savings Accounts for young and elderly dependents.

Completed? No.

Promise: Introduce the End Illegal Immigration Act to fund the construction of a Mexican border wall, “with the full understanding that the country Mexico will be reimbursing the United States for the full cost of such wall”.

Completed? No. Mr Trump has not introduced such an act, and funding for the wall will likely not be included in the 2017 budget.

Promise: Introduce the Restoring Community Safety Act, creating a Task Force On Violent Crime and increasing funding for federal law enforcement agencies, federal prosecutors, and programmes that train and assist local police.

Completed? No.

Promise: Introduce the Restoring National Security Act to eliminate the defence sequester and expand military investment; give veterans the ability to attend the private doctor of their choice, and establish new screening procedures for immigration.

Completed? No.

Promise: Introduce the Clean up Corruption in Washington Act to enact new ethics reforms and reduce the influence of special interests on politics.

Completed: No. Mr Trump has not endorsed any of the various ethics bills introduced to Congress

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