As Donald Trump’s presidency approaches its first anniversary, one cannot help but wonder about the audacious promises that were made during his presidency campaign which eventually led to voters swarming out onto American streets in his support.
Now, having spent close to a year at the oval office, Trump has no doubt come to a quick realization that most things are easier said than done and the process of introducing change takes time.
In Trump’s own words, 2017 was a year of “tremendous achievement’ and “monumental achievement actually”. He claims that he has done more in the oval office in a year than any of his predecessors whilst also fulfilling what was promised to his supporters. Let’s put those bold claims to the test, shall we?
In terms of Legislature, Trumps recent signing of the $1.5 trillion tax bill in December was arguably one of the most significant legislative reforms during his term and though many people are quick to point out that the bill heavily favors the rich and wealthy, it does offer relief and savings for both children and the elderly too, as promised during the campaign.
Additionally, Trump had claimed that he would create 25 million jobs over a period of ten years, proclaiming himself as “the greatest jobs producer God has ever created”. Well we are year in, and so far the US economy is going strong and while more and more jobs are being created continually, the actual number of those jobs falls well short of Trumps’ claimed 2.5 million jobs per year.
Americans had also been promised that trade agreements between the US and its trading partners would be renegotiated to get “better deals” for the American people and now, one year on, the US has indeed entered into negotiations for the North American Free Trade agreement ( NAFTA) with its neighboring countries. Even though Trump signed off on numerous executive orders relating to trade upon entering the oval office, progress on these agreements has been painfully slow and almost nonexistent.
In his own words, Trump promised that he would “bomb the hell out of ISIS” and over the course of last year, US in coalition with local forces have managed to take back most of the territory occupied by ISIS in Iraq and Syria and Trump’s relaxation of restrictions on US troops in these areas proved to be the right move to motivate the forces.
In terms of Trump’s various other promises on the US foreign policy, he did start to put pressure on NATO allies to beef up their military and defense arsenal in accordance with his ‘America First’ slogan, along with his initiative to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel as promised. With regards to the US-Iran deal which limits Iran’s nuclear activities, Trump is yet to take an initiative towards scrapping the agreement even though he was vehemently against it as a candidate.
Trump’s bold immigration comments caused a media frenzy in the 2015 campaign, during which he promised to “build a wall” on the US-Mexico border and vowed to crack down on illegal immigration whilst also demanding that Mexico should pay for the cost of building the wall.
A year into his presidency, the Trump administration is currently discussing new immigration regulations regarding their border security, DACA, chain migration and various other visa programs. With the government shutdown that was in effect earlier this month, the deal is yet to be agreed upon.
As far as the, ahem, “wall” is concerned, there has been almost no progress and even though various prototypes for the wall material have been built and proposed, some people are suggesting that such a project would be impossible to implement.
Trump did however recently tweet that the building of the wall was definitely on the cards, but it is interesting to note that the payment for the wall is definitely questionable with the Mexican government rejecting it outright.
Trump’s new stance on the matter is that Mexico shall definitely pay for the $20 billion dollar cost of building the wall “either directly, indirectly or through long term reimbursement that they would afford out of their $71 billion trade surplus” with the US.