Trump: I've Accomplished More Than Most Presidents

| by Robert Fowler

President Donald Trump asserted during his first meeting with Cabinet officials that he had accomplished more during his first six months in office than all previous U.S. presidents, aside from former President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

On June 12, Trump sat down with his full Cabinet at the White House for the first time. The president began the meeting by heralding his administration's achievements.

"I think we've been about as active as you can possibly be and at just about record-setting pace," Trump said.

The president then asserted that he had accomplished more during his first six months in office than the vast majority of his predecessors, The Hill reports.

"Never has there been a president, with few exceptions -- case of FDR, he had a major depression to handle -- who has passed more legislation and who has done more things than what we've done," Trump stated.

In an unusual break from previous administrations, the meeting continued with each Cabinet member taking a turn praising the president, CNN reports.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions told Trump that their administration was sending "the exact right message, and the response is fabulous around the country."

Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao thanked Trump "for getting this country moving again, and working again."

White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus described Trump in rapturous terms.

"On behalf of the entire senior staff around you, Mr. President, we thank you for the opportunity and the blessing that you've given us to serve your agenda and the American people," Priebus said.

The only Cabinet member who did not directly compliment Trump was Secretary of Defense James Mattis, who instead reserved his praise for U.S. military service members.

Beltway reporters took to social media to express bafflement in reaction to the Cabinet meeting, The Week reports.

"Each member took turns praising Trump as he sat & nodded approvingly," tweeted out Julie Davis of The New York Times.

"This interminable cabinet spray, where everybody pays tribute to Trump, is one of the most exquisitely awkward public events I've ever seen," tweeted out Glenn Thrush of The Washington Post.

CNN anchor Jake Tapper tweeted: "I've never seen a Cabinet meeting like this one before."

During the meeting, Trump pledged that he would unveil a plan within two weeks to eradicate the Islamic State group (ISIS).

On June 6, an analysis by Bloomberg noted that Trump had throughout his first six months in office publicly committed to a self-imposed deadline of two weeks on several of his key campaign promises, only to not meet the deadline without comment.

These instances included promises to present a taxation overhaul plan and an infrastructure package. The president bumped back a self-imposed deadline to announce his stance on the Paris Climate Accord several times before finally announcing that he would withdraw the U.S. from the international pact on June 2.

Presidential historian Barbara Perry of the University of Virginia's Miller Center of Public Affairs asserted that Trump was more focused on touting achievements than actually being productive.

"Trump continues to be in campaign mode with a lot of promises that he's not fulfilling," Perry said.

Meanwhile, White House spokesperson Lindsay Walters asserted that the Trump administration "has been turning the president's promises into policy at a remarkable rate."

On June 6, news satirist Trevor Noah blasted Trump's perceived accomplishments during a segment on "The Daily Show."

Noah asserted that the Trump administration was spending more time making symbolic gestures than enacting concrete policy. The satirist cited Trump holding a press conference when he signed a non-binding memo to privatize air traffic control and a heavily touted $110 billion U.S. arms deal with Saudi Arabia where only a fraction of the money has been secured.

"[Trump] just wrote a to-do list, then signed it like it was all done," Noah said of Trump's memo, according to Salon. "He really is a TV president."

The satirist added that Trump "loves the performance of doing things, but a lot of the time nothing is actually being done. … Essentially, Donald Trump wants to be president, but he doesn't want to do president."

Pulitzer Prize-winning PolitiFact has compiled a checklist of Trump's campaign promises, monitoring the president's actions since he assumed office.

As of June 12, PolitiFact found that Trump had kept 7 percent of his promises, compromised or broken 4 percent of his promises, and had 34 percent of his agenda in the works while another 18 percent was stalled by setbacks.

Has Trump accomplished all he thinks he has?
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