“I weep for the liberty of my country …the rights of the people have been bartered for promises of office.” – Andrew Jackson
PolitiFact keeps a running tab of President Trump’s campaign promises it considers “accomplished,” as shown below. My commentaries illustrate the consequences of fulfilling these promises (sources shown).
1. “A requirement that for every new federal regulation, two existing regulations must be eliminated.”
Many eliminated regulations safeguarded the public in areas like the environment, health/safety, and consumer protection. Corporate special interests benefitted rather than our citizens. (Quartz,9-22-18)
2. “I’m going to issue a lifetime ban against senior executive branch officials lobbying on behalf of a foreign government, and I’m going to ask Congress to pass a campaign finance reform that prevents registered foreign lobbyists from raising money in American elections and politics.”
Trump’s administration has turned a blind eye to financial shenanigans by its officials including Price, Pruitt, Ross, Zinke, Carson, and many others. (Bloomberg, 12-18-18)
3. “I am looking to appoint judges very much in the mold of Justice Scalia.”
Scalia was highly respected by the public; Kavanaugh clearly is not. Kavanaugh’s approval process politicized his selection, destroying Kavanaugh’s credibility with most Americans and further driving the nation into competing “tribes.” (Vox, 10-6-18)
4. “We will move the American embassy to the eternal capital of the Jewish people, Jerusalem.”
Unilaterally making this move undercut the US as an honest broker, setting back the Middle East peace process. (Foreign Policy, 5-17-18)
5. “We’re going to cancel the Paris Climate Agreement and stop all payments of U.S. tax dollars to U.N. global warming programs.”
Due to corporate lobbying and shady contributions, the USA stands alone in denying climate change, undercutting its position of world leadership. Climate change has been identified as a threat by DOD. (Brookings, 6-1-18).
6. “If I’m elected president, I’m accepting no salary.”
Trump is apparently under investigation for illegally personally profiting from the Presidency. He has never put his financial holdings into a true blind trust. (Washington Post, 12-15-18)
7. “I think NATO’s great. But it’s got to be modernized. And countries that we’re protecting have to pay what they’re supposed to be paying.”
NATO, the basis for world peace for 70 years, has been undermined by this President (Atlantic Council, 1-17-19).
8. “Countries in which immigration will be suspended would include places like Syria and Libya. And we are going to stop the tens of thousands of people coming in from Syria.”
Trump has played on fear of the “other” to undermine America’s traditional role as a haven for innocent refugees fleeing tyranny, hurting our international standing (Foreign Policy, 2-12-18).
9. “We will reform legal immigration to serve the best interests of America and its workers, the forgotten people. Workers. We’re going to take care of our workers.”
US economic growth from 1990-2014 was 15 percent higher due solely to migration here; immigration is thus considered an economic benefit for the US per most economists (Citi GPS, 9-18).
10. “I’m going to issue our notification of intent to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership.”
Withdrawal undercut our long-term strategic interests in Asia while strengthening China (Rand, 3-27-17).
11. “Any country that devalues their currency to take unfair advantage of the United States and all of its companies that can’t compete will face tariffs and taxes to stop the cheating.”
Tariffs will have a negative long term effect on our economy, per an internal White House report (NYT, 6-7-18).
12. “If I become president, we’re going to be saying Merry Christmas at every store. You can leave (happy holidays) at the corner.”
The “Trump Store” uses “Happy Holidays” in its advertising (Guardian, 12-23-18).
13.”I will veto. I will unsign that (President Barack Obama’s gun executive order) so fast.”
Trump helped repeal a regulation designed to restrict gun purchases by the mentally ill. Rates of US gun related deaths remain many times that of other every other democracy. Easy availability of guns for all, including the severely mentally ill, is the major cause (Vox, 10-3-17).
So, next Thanksgiving dinner when your elderly uncle says Trump has accomplished a lot, please ask him to look at the full picture. Even if he won’t find it on Fox News.