By this point in his Presidency, Barack Obama had passed a $831 billion stimulus bill. By early April his first federal budget had passed both chambers of Congress, laying the groundwork for his overhauls of health care and government spending on education. The following year came the re-set of Wall Street, known as Dodd-Frank. Then Obamacare. It was the most significant period of legislating since Lyndon Johnson’s first few years in office.
As Trump hits 50 days in office this week, health-care reform is hobbled by divisions between conservatives who want to cut Medicaid deeper and faster and moderates who want to preserve the Obama-era expansion. Yesterday Trump released a budget with unprecedented cuts to discretionary spending that many Republicans describe as dead on arrival. Trump’s second attempt at an executive order banning travel from several Muslim-majority countries is again being successfully challenged in the courts, eating up more time and resources in an overwhelmed White House. Trump’s “Wall” is a bizarre folly. The Russia investigation, which will begin on Monday with potentially damaging testimony from the F.B.I. director James Comey, is only beginning.
Trump has also persuaded large numbers of Americans – including many of Republican persuasion – that he’s dangerously unhinged.
No matter the criteria by which presidencies are judged, Trump’s is on the way to being a total debacle.