Opinion by Robert Reich
(BERKELEY, CA.) -- Almost one year in, it’s
time for another
update for Trump voters on his election promises:
1. He told you he’d cut your taxes, and that the
super-rich like him
would pay more. You bought it. But his new tax law does the
2027, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, the richest 1
will have got 83 percent of the tax cut and the richest 0.1 percent, 60
of it. But more than half of all Americans — 53 percent — will pay more
taxes. As Trump told his wealthy friends at Mar-a-Lago just
days after the
tax bill became law, “You all just got a lot richer.”
2. He promised to close “special interest loopholes
that have been so
good for Wall Street investors but unfair to American
the notorious “carried interest” loophole for private-equity, hedge
real estate partners. You bought it. But the new tax law keeps
the “carried interest” loophole.
3. He told you he’d repeal Obamacare and replace it
“beautiful.” You bought it. But he didn’t repeal and he
(Just as well: His plan would have knocked at least 23 million off
insurance, including many of you.) Instead, he’s doing what he can to
back and replace it with nothing. The new tax law will result in 13
people losing health coverage, according to the Congressional Budget
4. He told you he’d invest $1 trillion in our
infrastructure. You bought it. But after his giant tax cut
and millionaires, there’s no money left for infrastructure.
5. He said he’d clean the Washington swamp.
You bought it. But he’s
brought into his administration more billionaires, CEOs, and Wall
than in any administration in history, to make laws that will enrich
businesses, and he’s filled departments and agencies with former
lawyers and consultants who are crafting new policies for the same
they recently worked for.
6. He said he’d use his business experience to whip
the White House into
shape. You bought it. But he has created the most
back-stabbing White House in modern history, and has already fired and
so many assistants (one of them hired and fired in a little more than a
that people there barely know who’s in charge of what.
7. He told you he’d “bring down drug prices” by
making deals with drug
companies. You bought it. But now the White House says that
8. He promised “a complete ban on foreign lobbyists
raising money for
American elections.” You bought it. But foreign lobbyists are
money for American elections.
9. He told you “I’m not going to cut Social Security
like every other
Republican and I’m not going to cut Medicare or Medicaid.”
You bought it.
But he and House Speaker Paul Ryan are already planning such cuts in
deal with the ballooning deficit created, in part, by the new tax law
corporations and the rich.
10. He promised “six weeks of paid maternity leave
to any mother with a
newborn child whose employer does not provide the benefit.”
You bought it.
But the giant tax cut for corporations and the rich doesn’t leave any
11. He said that on Day One he’d label China a
You bought it. But then he met with China’s president Xi Jinping and
“China is not a currency manipulator.” Ever since then, Trump has been
up to Xi.
12. He said he wouldn’t bomb Syria. You
bought it. But then he bombed
13. He said he’d build a “wall” across the southern
believed him. But there’s no money for that, either. Chief of staff
says it is “unlikely that we will build a wall, a physical barrier,
from sea to
14. He promised that the many women who accused him
of sexual misconduct
“will be sued after the election is over.” You bought it. He
them, presumably because he doesn’t want the truth to come
15. He said he would not be a president who took
vacations. “I would
not be a president that takes time off,” he promised, and he called
Obama “the vacationer-in-Chief.” You bought it. But since becoming
has spent nearly 25 percent of his days at one of his golf properties
portion of the day, according to Golf News Network, at a cost to
taxpayers of over
$77 million. That’s already more taxpayer money on vacations than Obama
the first 3 years of his presidency. Not to mention all the money
spending protecting his family, including his two sons who travel all
world on Trump business.
16. He said he’d force companies to keep jobs in
America, and that there
would be “consequences” for companies that shipped jobs abroad. You
believed him. But despite their promises, Carrier, Ford, GM, and the
continued to ship jobs to Mexico and China. Carrier (a division of
Technologies) has moved ahead with plans to send 1,000 jobs at its
plant to Mexico. Notwithstanding, the federal government has rewarded
Technologies with 15 new contracts since Trump’s inauguration. Last
Microsoft opened a new factory in Wilsonville, Oregon, that was
herald a new era in domestic tech manufacturing. But in July, the
announced it was closing the plant. More than 100 workers and
lose their jobs when production shifts to China. GE is sending jobs to
IBM is sending them to Costa Rica, Egypt, Argentina, and Brazil. There
been no “consequences” for sending all these jobs overseas.
17. He promised to revive the struggling coal
industry and “bring back
thousands” of lost mining jobs. You bought it. But coal jobs
disappear. Since Trump’s victory, at least 6 plants that relied on coal
closed or announced they will close. Another 40 are projected to close
the president’s four-year term. Utilities continue to switch to natural
instead of coal.
18. He promised to protect steel workers. But
according to the
American Iron and Steel Institute, which tracks shipments, steel
19.4 percent higher in the first 10 months of 2017 than in the same
year. That import surge has hurt American steel workers, who were
struggling against a glut of cheap Chinese steel. For example,
just announced it will soon lay off 150 of its 207 steel workers at its
in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania.
19. He said he’d make America safer. You
believed him. But according
to Mass Shooting Tracker, there have been 377 mass shootings so far
including 58 people killed and hundreds injured at a concert in Las
26 churchgoers killed and 20 injured at a church in Texas. Trump
consider any gun controls.
20. He said he’d release his taxes. “I’m
under a routine audit and
it’ll be released, and as soon as the audit is finished it will be
he promised during the campaign. He hasn’t released his taxes.
ROBERT B. REICH is the
Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the
University of California, Berkeley, and a senior fellow at the Blum
He served as secretary
of labor in the Clinton administration and Time
magazine named him one of the 10 most effective cabinet secretaries of
Mr. Reich has written
14 books, including the best-sellers Aftershock,
The Work of Nations, Beyond Outrage and most recently Saving
is also a founding editor of The American
Prospect magazine, chairman of Common Cause, a member of the
Academy of Arts and Sciences and co-creator of the award-winning
INEQUALITY FOR ALL.