President Donald Trump declared July 17, that since coming to office, he has signed more bills than any other president in history.
According to an article from The New York Times, however, the number of bills signed by Trump is about average compared to those by the past six presidents.
"We've signed more bills -- and I'm talking about through the legislature -- than any president, ever," Trump said, according to The Times. "For a while, Harry Truman had us. And now, I think, we have everybody."
Previously, Trump alleged that his administration had "passed more legislation" than any president since Franklin D. Roosevelt, who "had a major depression to handle."
The Times' figures show that Jimmy Carter signed 70 bills during his first six months in office, while Bill Clinton signed 50. Trump, who will reach six months in office July 20, has signed 42 bills so far.
In addition, The Times suggested that some of the legislation included in Trump's count was not significant. Three of the 42 laws mentioned were signed to appoint members to the Smithsonian Board of Regents, one to look into getting better weather reports, and another to order the Department of Homeland Security to manage its vehicles more efficiently.
The Washington Post reported that, although former President Barack Obama signed 39 bills during his first six months compared to Trump's 42, the legislation approved by Obama covered 1,957 pages compared to 880 pages for Trump. Obama's early legislation included the multi-billion dollar bailout of the banks in the midst of the financial crisis.
The Post noted that 60 percent of the bills signed by Trump thus far were a page long.
However, Mark Short, Trump's legislative adviser, argued that the president is right to talk about his achievements.
"It's a response to a lot of media coverage that has tried to downplay what he's accomplished," Short told the Times. "There's an overarching coverage about what's not been accomplished. The president is trying to point out what we actually have done."
Trump and the Republicans hope to pass a health care law soon and the president plans to push ahead with implementing tax cuts; a third priority is the passage of an infrastructure bill.
"Generally speaking, Congress needs many months to do something big," Yale political science Professor David Mayhew said.
Trump is reportedly trying to speed up the process on health care. The Los Angeles Times reported that he hosted Republican senators opposed to the bill at the White House July 17, looking to convince them to change their minds.