Saturday marks the 100th day in office of our nation’s 45th president – Donald Trump.
Whether you are an aggravated protester or a staunch supporter, you have to admit that this has been the most boggling first 100 days of a newly elected leader. Already he has faced many headline-grabbing ups and downs.
He made bushels of promises throughout his campaign. Nearly as soon as he took the oath of office, he began – by decree of executive order – to try and fulfill some of those vows.
Among the first was to seek “THE PROMPT REPEAL” of the Obama administration’s Affordable Care Act. In succeeding days and weeks, the effort fell short as the Republican-controlled Congress failed to gather enough supportive votes.
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One of the more controversial executive orders seeks to curtail travel and immigration from several predominantly Muslim countries – the so-called “travel ban.” It immediately came under scrutiny as being unconstitutional. The original and revised orders have been blocked in federal courts. The Trump administration has appealed.
Meanwhile, the promise to build a “big, beautiful wall” along the southern border with Mexico has come to an unclear conclusion, as funding for the massive project has yet to be found. It doesn’t look like Mexico will be paying for it anytime soon, either.
While offering to cut corporate taxes from 35 percent to 15 percent and devising ambitious plans to revise the tax code, Trump also proposes to cut or eliminate the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
He has also repealed several of his predecessor’s environmental protections and reversed regulations on natural gas, oil and clean coal production.
He quietly signed a bill into law rolling back regulations that made it harder for people with mental illnesses to purchase a gun.
He repealed reduced mortage-protection insurance premiums that could affect low-income and first-time home buyers and has started the dismantling of Dodd-Frank, the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act signed in 2010.
Trump scored positive points on some of his cabinet choices. Retired Marine Corps Gen. James “Mad Dog” Mattis was confirmed in a landslide for secretary of defense, and retired Marine Corps Gen. John F. Kelly was also confirmed with a large number of “yea” votes for secretary of homeland security.
Others picks have raised eyebrows. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ confirmation was a heated battle, and Vice President Mike Pence’s vote was needed to break a tie in the Senate to get the OK for education secretary candidate Betsy DeVos.
Despite the embarrassment of having National Security Adviser Mike Flynn resign due to less-than-forthcoming truthfulness about his connections to Russia, Trump’s pick as Flynn’s replacement, Army Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, has been praised.
Still, there are large number of unfilled positions in the Trump administration.
Another Trump win was the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. Even though this required a historic change of rules in Congress for the confirmation, it nonetheless counts – big time.
While some polls suggest that his overall approval rating is below 40 percent, a record low for a modern-era president, his numbers jump among his base of supporters seemingly every time he attacks the media.
Between weekend golf getaways at his Mar-a-Lago Resort in Florida, Trump is plunging forward to accomplish his goals. And people are talking about him. From signed petitions in Great Britain to ban his visit there to his frenetic tweeting to the military’s dropping of bombs in Syria and Afghanistan, the world is watching. Of course, the saber-rattling contest with nuclear-armed North Korea has many concerned.
But this is only a glance at the man’s decisions and influence. There are way more than 100 days of Trump left to go – plus he has already filed to run again in 2020.
SW Parra is an award-winning editorial cartoonist for The Fresno Bee. Connect with him at firstname.lastname@example.org.