Trump’s Campaign Promises: Where Are They Now?


Alia Yeancades

Timothy Kim ’18 comments on President Trump’s proposed border wall.

At the beginning of every new presidency, it is an American tradition to reflect on the first year of the president’s first term. It is not uncommon that along with celebrating this milestone, Americans take this opportunity to reflect on how well the president has been capable of handling being an influential public figure. These days are especially known to be the most crucial during their presidency because it is a time where the president has the most media focus on him and is thus considered at his most vulnerable to the media and public eye. After all, a president’s every move subjects him to fall victim to extensive critiquing by various news outlets around the world.

This past April marked the first year and a half of the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump’s presidency. Without exception, Trump’s first year drew critics and supporters alike, as Americans took this occasion to look back on what he has accomplished so far. During his campaign, Trump was known for his vast and bold promises ringing up a total of 663 by the end of his campaign trail. Of these promises, a few of his most predominant and memorable ones included building a wall, bringing an end to jobs being stolen by foreign competitors, adding countries known for extremist terrorist activity to America’s current travel ban, and deporting all illegal immigrants. Out of the 663 promises made, during his first year as president, Trump has managed to break as many as eighty within his first 100 days versus the seven he has managed to keep, without even beginning to take into  account the countless of other promises that have been put on hold for the time being.

Despite the fact that quite a few of these promises were vital to Trump’s campaign platform as well as the main reason for his vast supporters, he has not yet been able to find a compromise for many of these said promises. One of the most notorious and controversial of these promises includes the End Illegal Immigration Act, which concerns the funding of the construction to build a wall along America’s southern border. Throughout his campaign Trump repeatedly promised that America would be able to build a wall, thoroughly barricading America from illegal Mexican immigrants.  Trump showed no signs of stepping down from his rhetoric, as he began to claim that within his first hundred days, he would be able to have Mexico pay for the wall, “with the full understanding that [Mexico] will be reimbursing the United States.” The government of Mexico, however, has said that they will not fund this wall. Even well before President Trump’s inauguration, former Mexican President Vicente Fox firmly stood by his country as he voiced that “[Mexico] will never, never, never pay for that wall.” The Mexican Consul General has even made an official statement declaring that “[Mexico] will not pay in any way or under any circumstances for a wall or physical barrier built on U.S. territory along the Mexican border.”

“[Mexico] will never, never, never pay for that wall.”

However a little over a year later, it seems that President Trump has changed the story. There has not been a bill introduced yet, but it now seems that seeing as Mexico will no longer be funding the border wall, as President Trump has turned to depend upon on the wallets of American taxpayers with a new import tax. “In my opinion, the whole situation was quite inevitable,” said Timothy Kim ’18. “We all know that at some point in their career, a politician has to made at least one elaborate promise that is improbable or at least near impossible to keep, but this is honestly going too far. President Trump needs to realize that not everything is a business deal, and that you can’t have everything that you want.” Kim said. 

Another contentious promise that has had trouble staying out of headlines is President Trump’s promise to begin renegotiating trade deals with countries including China and Japan. Despite the fact that the initial promise itself seems harmless and rather quite promising, it is the President’s execution of these trade deals that is stirring trouble between America and countries such as China. Initially going as far back as April of 2017, the situation first began when Trump had launched investigations into steel imports from China and their allegedly unfair trade practices. However it was not until earlier this year that Trump started imposing import taxes on solar panels and steel, most of which we get from China, as well as several other countries that President Trump has openly stated that he wanted to create better relations with. These import taxes were not imposed until a year later when China began their retaliation with their own import taxes on American goods worth approximately $3 billion covering an array of imports. Since then, the two countries have been threatening each other back and forth with tariffs escalating from $50 to $100 billion.  

As tensions continue to rapidly rise between America and China, government officials have openly spoken their concerns to the media, as well as to President Trump himself, but it still does not seem as if the President is going to willingly back out of import tax threats anytime soon. This is quite unfitting for him, considering the fact that countries like China are the same countries that he has openly stated that he looks forward to strengthening relations with. 

Despite the fact that reactions across the internet as well as the Bronx Science community consist of mixed feelings towards Trump’s presidency so far, we all have to remember that he is only a little over a year into his first term. In the long run, there is still time for him to redeem himself through the fulfillment of his other promises, and ideally coming to a compromise regarding the ones that have seemingly failed to be implemented so far. Hopefully, after a year’s passing, we can look back with the hindsight that Trump’s presidency started off with a rocky start, but for now, we can merely hope for the best in the coming year and for the rest of his presidency.