(CNN) – Amid the rush of his first hundred days, President Trump is talking policy, but problems are frequently blocking out that message; creating a picture of a White House in chaos.
It started on day one with the unproven claim of a record inauguration audience, which, when challenged, produced the wildly quotable statement, “Our press secretary gave alternative facts to that.”
Then the president himself chimed in, insisting while he won the electoral vote he gathered fewer popular votes in the general election, only because of illegal voting.
Again, there was no proof. And on it goes: a meeting with Mexico fell apart amid sharp words; a raid in Yemen went tragically wrong, and the president insisted terrorism is running so out of control, saying, “It’s gotten to the point where it’s not even being reported.”
When that claim was disputed, he issued a list of “underreported” incidents, which took heat too.
The president fired the acting attorney general for not enforcing his travel ban, only to have the courts halt the ban anyway.
Even as he has struggled to get his promised repeal of Obamacare rolling in earnest, the president has attacked democrats for trying to slow down approval of his cabinet members, only to see his choice for labor secretary withdraw his nomination two days after the ouster of his national security adviser amid concerns about ties to Russia.
And for all that, he found time to fire a Twitter rocket at Nordstrom’s for pulling his daughter’s merchandise, which a top aide urged people to buy anyway, which another aide suggested was not the right move.
Certainly all new presidents face challenges, but in the first hundred days, Bill Clinton passed a federal budget and signed the “family leave” act. George W. Bush ushered in “No Child Left Behind,” and started work on big tax cuts. And Barack Obama launched the economic stimulus, and laid the groundwork for Obamacare.