Grading Trump On His First 6 Months In Office

Photo: Olivier Douliery/Pool/Getty Images.
President Trump has occupied the White House for exactly six months, and it's been a whirlwind trying to keep up with everything that's happened since January 20. Several issues — from access to birth control, to immigration, to climate change — have undergone big policy changes. So, how have Trump's first six months in office stacked up?
He began signing executive orders right away, but hasn't passed a single piece of major legislation to date. His approval rating is at an all-time low, with a Washington Post/ABC News poll finding that only 36% of Americans approve of his presidency so far (the lowest of any president in 70 years after six months, according to ABC News).
Advertisement
But, let's break it down by topic. Ahead we examine how he's handled six major issues and grade his performance over the past six months.

1. Reproductive Rights

Performance: In his first 100 days in office alone, Trump —among other things — reinstated the global gag rule, defunded the United Nations Population Fund, appointed a Supreme Court justice likely to rule against abortion access, and reversed Obama's Title X family planning protections allowing states to withhold money from clinics that perform abortion procedures.
He also filled the Department of Health and Human Services with employees who don't believe birth control works or that it should be easily accessible. That same department cut funding for teen pregnancy prevention programs and research nationwide this month.
Grade: D — There have been multiple setbacks, but Americans still have reproductive rights and Planned Parenthood hasn't been defunded.
Advertisement

2. Healthcare

Performance: The president has pushed Republicans in Congress to pass a bill repealing and replacing much of President Obama's legacy healthcare reform, but the efforts stalled in the Senate. He told Senate Republicans on Wednesday not to leave for Congress' summer recess without sending him a repeal bill to sign, despite the fact that repealing Obamacare without a replacement would leave 32 million more Americans uninsured in a decade.
Grade: F — Trump's efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare have failed.

3. Climate Change

Performance: Trump (who has called climate change "an expensive hoax") pulled America out of the Paris Climate accord. He also signed an executive order pulling back from the Clean Power Plan and initiating reviews of efforts to reduce harmful emissions.
Advertisement
Grade: D — There have been clear steps to undo climate change progress, but no immediate changes have gone into effect.

4. Immigration

Performance: Since taking office, Trump has persistently fought federal courts in attempts to instate a travel ban on people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen (and initially Iraq). The Supreme Court allowed parts of the ban to go into effect in June, blocking nationals of the six listed countries who don't have a "bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States."
The president has worked to eliminate sanctuary cities throughout the U.S., which protect undocumented immigrants from deportation (these efforts have been partially blocked by federal judges, as well).
Additionally, the administration has ramped up Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) efforts, doubling arrests of undocumented immigrants without criminal records, despite promises to target criminals.
Advertisement
Grade: F — If it weren't for the court system, Trump would have outright banned people from seven Muslim-majority nations.

5. LGBTQ Rights

Performance: In February, the Trump administration rolled back Obama-era protections guaranteeing transgender students the right to use school bathrooms corresponding with their gender identity.
He also failed to recognize Pride month this year, unlike President Obama, who always did so.
Grade: C — Despite rolling back a major protection for trans students, most LGBTQ rights remain intact.
Advertisement

6. Filling The White House

Performance: Trump has been much slower than the previous three presidents in filling federal government positions. In early June, he had only officially nominated people for 110 positions, compared to Obama's 238, Bush's 202, and Clinton's 207 nominations in the same time frame. Although Trump has blamed Senate Democrats for blocking his nominations, he's been slow in posting them, and Republicans hold a majority in the Senate.
On Wednesday, Trump nominated 11 people for federal positions ranging from secretary of the Army to assistant secretary of the Interior. However, he still has a lot of catching up to do.
Grade: D — Trump has gradually made nominations, but falls far behind his predecessors.
Advertisement