It's been 100 days. And what do you know, we're still here.
Much like climate alarmists' predictions that we'd all be dead by 2005, 2010, and 2015, the knee-jerk liberals that predicted a Donald Trump presidency would result in the death of millions have been proven to be a bit premature.
Sure, it's only been 100 days, but I think we're doing fine.
Everyone that expected Trump to round up all the gays and minorities and do... something to them was also proven wrong. Don't know where they got that one from, but still.
In fact, after 100 days in office, it seems like Donald Trump is doing a bang up job at the gig. Sure, there have been a few hiccups and even some things that conservatives don't like, but all things considered, President Trump is doing a good job.
When you honestly look at the pace this White House has been going since the Inauguration, you actually might be overwhelmed to see just how much they've accomplished in a relatively short amount of time.
While liberals and critics might scoff at that, you have to keep in mind your perspective. Those who don't like Trump will have a hard time judging his first 100 days. The progress he's made they'd never be happy about, so they'd be loath to admit he's done anything.
Hardcore supporters might want to overlook the mistakes or setbacks, but despite all this Trump has done remarkably well in regards to keeping his promises made during the campaign.
As Joel Pollack writes:
By historical standards, President Donald Trump has had a remarkably active first 100 days.
His major achievements have been in foreign policy and national security, where he has restored America’s military deterrent and reversed its international decline. He also appointed Justice Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, signed over a dozen laws repealing existing federal regulations, drastically reduced illegal immigration, and renewed economic confidence. (via Breitbart)
Sounds pretty good in one paragraph, but if you've been following the administration week to week, you'd discover how busy a business-mogul-turned-president can be, when given the opportunity.
Trump himself said it has been the most successful in America's history. Is he right? Well, that's very hard to judge, considering how different every administration has been and how different America has been over the years.
But let's compare it, at least, to recent administrations. You know what's coming.
President Barack Obama did little of consequence in his first 100 days,aside from the ill-fated $862 billion stimulus and a failed executive order to close the prison at Guantánamo Bay.
Yeah I know, it's easy to take potshots at Barry at this point. Mostly because every president gets hammered once they're out of office and- among conservatives- Obama will forever be a punching bag to let out our frustrations.
But even from an objective standpoint, we can say that Trump has been very aggressive in his first 100 days, arguably more so than Obama.
Here are some of the major accomplishments.
Reduction of the Federal Government
This is not the sexiest issue people talk about (if any are), but it's perhaps the most important. The biggest difference ideologically between liberals and conservatives is the role of government in the lives of private citizens.
As a traditional conservative, I believe that the government exists to protect the freedoms of the citizens by upholding the law and defending the country from outside threats. America was founded to empower the people to govern their lives- which is why we hold elections and provide freedoms like speech and religion. When the federal government gets too involved in our personal lives- including issues like marriage, what we do on our own land, and the size of our soft drinks- it goes too far.
Conservatives criticize liberals' stance that the federal government should provide services to citizens in need as encroaching on Socialism. Whether you believe in programs like Welfare and Obamacare, the fact is the more power the federal government has, the more likely America is to become a dictatorship.
On day one President Trump signed an executive order that eased the burden of federal agencies in enforcing Obamacare. That not only robbed the healthcare program of some of its power, but it stripped government agencies of some of their own.
President Trump signed an executive order that struck a huge blow to federal regulation. Under Obama, the federal government took huge strides in hampering the growth and innovation of small businesses through over regulation. You may not have noticed it, but the ripple effects of heavy regulation can impact everyone.
Trump set a new rule for regulation. For every new regulation a federal agency wants to pass, they have to retire two old ones. That means they will either refuse to pass new regulations, or greatly reduce existing ones. You can do the math yourself; it will result in less government overreach.
Keep in mind this clever rule does not prevent the government from doing a good job. As someone who worked in the Environmental Protection Agency, I learned how much we need some regulation to prevent corrupt companies from harming Americans. This order from Trump merely prevents agencies from going too far; a check and balance if you will.
President Trump also used a Clinton-era law that set a 60-day review window for regulations to repeal thirteen last minute measures set by Obama.
The Supreme Court
With all the drama caused by Trump's cabinet picks, the appointment of any Supreme Court selection by Trump seemed like an impossibility.
Those of us paying attention to the cabinet confirmation hearings know full well how much resistance certain members of Trump's team received from liberal senators. While people like Ben Carson passed through will little resistance, Betsy DeVos, Rex Tillerson, and especially Jeff Sessions were raked over the coals.
So when time came for Neil Gorsuch to be confirmed as the next Justice of the Supreme Court, we were all waiting for a big fight. And while we knew that the GOP had the votes to get him in, Democrats would try to drag out the process with filibusters and rhetoric.
But what do you know? The Republicans nutted up and got the job done, something that even in the Trump era they seem to be reluctant to do.
Gorsuch did extremely well in his confirmation hearings. When Democrats carried out a threat to filibuster, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell found enough Republican votes to change the rules, meaning that future Trump nominees would have an easier path. (via Breitbart)
Why is this so huge? A few reasons. First of all, Trump got a Supreme Court Justice appointed in his first 100 days. The process of selecting and appointing someone to the Supreme Court is no small task. Justices serve their entire lives; they weigh in on issues effecting the very Constitution of the United States. It's a big deal. Plus this Justice would be replacing the late Antonin Scalia, a Reagan-era appointee with strong conservative convictions.
With Gorsuch, Trump got another constitutional conservative on the Supreme Court, pushing the power toward the right. And again, he did it in his first 100 days. I can't stress how big that is. A president the left has called every name under the sun. A president they claim would be a big failure and ruin our country, was not only able to get a Supreme Court Justice appointed, but he did it in record time.
Even Obama didn't do anything that fast.
President Trump might be the most pro-life president in American history. Not only did he promise to overturn Roe V. Wade with the appointment of conservative Supreme Court Justices, but he is already working on eliminating the practice in America and around the world.
I already discussed the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. In Trump's coming years there might be one or two more chances for him to appoint new Justices. It would then only be a matter of time before abortion comes back to the Supreme Court.
But before that Trump has made gains for the pro-life movement. His cabinet has been the most conservative in many years, with key leadership outspoken critics of abortion. One of his earliest executive orders was to reinstate the Mexico City Policy, which denies organizations that receive U.S. federal funds from providing and promoting abortion overseas.
Not only did he reinstate it, something that every conservative President has done since Reagan, but he updated the policy to ensure no U.S. tax dollars go toward international groups that force people into having abortions.
There might come a time, very soon, where federally-approved abortions in the United States will be a thing of the past.
While pro-choice advocates will bellyache that this would be a blow to women's reproductive rights, it will actually be an improvement. Denying abortion, at least on a federal level, will allow for better choices to be made in the arena of reproductive health. More effective birth control can be implemented and encouraged, and alternative solutions to unexpected pregnancies- like placing children in welcoming homes- can be championed, rather than the barbaric and outdated practice of ending a pregnancy.
National Security and International Affairs
President Trump has been taking a more aggressive stance on international affairs that ultimately affect American lives.
People criticized Obama by saying that his administration took a backseat to world affairs. I would agree. Aside from controversial drone strikes- and actions by him and his cabinet that destabilized the Middle East- President Obama seemed to let politics dictate his decisions regarding the rest of the world. When he wasn't apologizing to Europe for Americans' way of life, he was letting nations like Iran and North Korea call the shots.
It's almost paradoxical that a President that vowed to put Americans First would be more aggressive with world affairs. But the two go hand in hand. In order to protect your country's values and way of life, there come moments when you have to take action in other parts of the world. Whether it's to protect Americans and our allies, or to ensure other nations have the opportunity to enjoy similar freedoms, President Trump has been aggressive on world affairs.
There have been key bombings of ISIS bases around the Middle East, North Africa, and Afghanistan, including the dropping of the MOAB on an Afghan hideout. Recent weeks have revealed more aggressive actions regarding North Korea, as the president has moved ships and other defense tech into that region, a clear show of strength to discourage action from Lil' Kim.
Perhaps one of his more controversial actions was his order of a missile strike against a Syrian airbase believed to hold chemical weapons. This was a direct reversal of the previous administration's stance on Syria- and even on Trump's own stance. But in light of the terrible gassing of Syrian civilians, coupled with the bombing of a hospital, what could a man like Trump do but respond? His actions showed that such horrific attacks on civilians would not be tolerated by this administration.
Immigration and the Economy
Trump promised a big, beautiful wall across the U.S.-Mexican border. In his first 100 days, Trump has signed executive orders that have laid the groundwork for such a wall to be built.
But long before the first brick is laid, his use of existing laws to protect the southern border have already made an impact.
Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions — ramped up law enforcement, deporting criminal illegal aliens and sending a clear signal to potential illegal immigrants that they ought not try their luck. Illegal border crossings were down by nearly two-thirds over the same period the year before. (via Breitbart)
It's amazing what you can do when you, ya know, actually follow the law. Arguments about immigrant families aside, it was clear that our southern border was a revolving door for human trafficking (a.k.a.: slavery), drug cartels, and even terrorists. Even the most basic enforcement was denied by Obama's administration.
There has been ample news about our economy improving thanks to Trump's election and policies. Even before he was sworn in, companies were announcing new plans to bring or keep jobs in the United States. The stock market has surged, and consumer confidence is at a record high.
The economy added nearly 300,000 private sector jobs in the first full month of Trump’s presidency, with the U.S. unemployment rate at 4.5 percent. In March, the Dow Jones industrial average also rose above 21,000 points for the first time in its history. (via Breitbart)
I'm sure those were all coincidences, right? Not likely.
The Negative Stuff
I would be remiss if I didn't talk about some of the controversial stuff from the president's first 100 days. But considering the heated election, the divisiveness of the political parties, and the gross media bias, the fact that these so-call "scandals" haven't derailed the administration is a testament to Trump's dogged determination and proof these problems have been largely overblown.
Perhaps the biggest problem in the early days was the ongoing revelation of leaks from within the White House. This even led to the dismissal of Michael Flynn, when it was revealed he wasn't completely honest with Vice President Pence. Although we've learned that these leaks were largely a result of Obama holdovers, it certainly didn't put the new administration on the best footing.
The war with the media- while not entirely a problem- continues. You can't blame Trump for fostering an antagonistic relationship with the media. They were the biggest resistance to his campaign and still seem to oppose him as our Commander in Chief. While I welcome his potshots at biased media outlets and believe the fake news deserves a swift death, the continued aggression can limit First Amendment freedoms and prevent the real free press from doing their job.
On the legislative front, we've had a big failure to repeal Obamacare. Thanks to Comrade Ryan, the GOP bill was so unpopular even among conservatives, it died before a vote. That didn't help Trump's promise to provide a better alternative. Couple that with his repeated attempts to curtail immigration from terrorist-linked countries. While liberals may celebrate radical judges who openly oppose the POTUS, I am among the many who believe Trump should take it straight to the Supreme Court. That has yet to happen.
There's a lot more to discuss, like Trump's restoration of NASA and their mission to Mars or the bizarre case of the Russian-hacking rumors. But now is the time to look to the next 100 days and the rest of his administration.
Both fans and critics of Trump must watch closely how he pivots and learns from his early days in office. Things will move even faster, as Trump and his team craft better strategies to get their goals accomplished. And what about 2018, when mid-term elections are up? Big things can and will happen that will either solidify his power or send a few shake-ups.
We'll have to wait and see.