By the end of the day on November 8, 2016 the world knew that Donald Trump would soon become the 45th president of the United States. Trump was inaugurated on January 20, 2017. As the debate about Trump’s performance continues across America, Ball State College Republicans and Ball State University Democrats weigh in on Trump’s performance as president after a year in office.
“Generally, we support Trump when his views are in line with conservative values,” said Isaac Miller, Chairman of the Ball State College Republicans.
Miller says his organization doesn’t sponsor the “party first” mentality and that the BSU Republicans are represented by a wide variety of members. Miller says some members love Trump and some hate him. Nonetheless, the organization always supports the Republican party.
Ball State University Democrats have a significantly different view of Trump’s performance. Dominic Bordenaro, the communications director of the Ball State Democrats, spoke on the organization’s behalf.
“Donald Trump has performed just as we expected: terribly,” Bordenaro said. “While the president is busy golfing, cutting taxes for the wealthiest, and touting the growth of the stock market, American’s are struggling. DREAMers are terrified, wages are stagnant, and we have an opioid epidemic sweeping across the nation.”
To judge Trump’s time in the oval office, The Washington Post formed a Trump campaign promise tracker that monitors the top 60 promises he made during his campaign. So far, The Post says he has kept 11, broke 15 and launched another 16 promises. Of the 60 promises, 11 have been halted by the court system. He has also compromised on 7 of his promises.
Trump has kept hot button campaign promises like announcing the U.S. withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership and lifting Obama-era environmental protection roadblocks to allowing energy infrastructure projects like the Keystone Pipeline to move forward. Trump also has expanded vocational and technical educational programs by providing them with $200 million in additional funding. As promised, Trump instructed the secretary of commerce and trade representatives to end foreign trading abuses against the United States by axing deals in which the country didn’t profit.
But Trump has also back down on key campaign promises that helped get him elected. Thus far, he has failed to make Mexico pay for a border wall between the two countries. Likewise, Trump’s budget cut aid for low-income and first-generation college students, which makes college less affordable . The tax bill that he signed instead raised taxes on four-year universities. Trump also eliminated the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant Program, which had pooled $732 million and went to more than a million poor college students annually.
The tracker shows Trump’s tax bill broke multiple promises that he made on the campaign trail. He promised to propose and pass a simplified tax bill, where the middle class would see the largest tax cuts. The Post stated that most proposed cuts were given mostly to big corporations. He was unable to reduce the number of tax brackets from 7 to 3, to simplify tax forms. He also went back on his promise to allow Americans to deduct childcare and elder care from their taxes.
Trump hasn’t repealed and replaced Obamacare like he promised.
Miller says that The Post’s promise tracker is accurate overall and that Trump’s biggest success has been tax reform and appointing Neil Gorsuch as a Supreme Court Justice.
Bordenaro also believes The Post’s promise tracker is accurate. The organization confirms that the president failed to keep his promises of making college more affordable, create tax-free dependent care savings accounts for young and elderly dependents, and his tax bill was not simplified and heavily benefits the wealthy. He says that his party would support Trump’s proposed infrastructure bill.
Miller believes the failure to repeal Obamacare was the biggest setback of Trump’s presidency. But he says that it wasn’t all Trump’s fault. Congress didn’t cooperate with the president.
Bordenaro said that Trump’s biggest mistake is bargaining the building of a border wall in exchange for protection of DACA recipients. He said that building a border wall is not only wrong but disgusting. The Ball State Democrats believe that members of the Republican party who support this measure should be ashamed.
“Overall the party believes that Donald Trump should not be president,” Bordenaro said. “We will actively be fighting to reduce his party’s control in Congress in 2018 and we will fight to defeat him in 2020.”
For each president, Gallup News maintains a weekly approval report. Research conducted by Gallup shows that Trump’s approval rating in his first year was the lowest of any United States president, since Gallup started gauging approval rating with president Truman. As of the week of Feb. 18, 2018, the website shows 37 percent of people approve of Trump’s performance while 59 percent disapprove.
The content on this page was produced by students for class assignments under the guidance of their department faculty members.