Trump says first 100 days 'just about the most successful' in U.S. history

"Perhaps the greatest change of all is the renewal of the American spirit," Trump said.

By Doug G. Ware
President Donald Trump waves as he departs the White House Friday for a trip to Atlanta to address and NRA convention. Before the trip, he said in his weekly address that his administration may be the most successful in U.S. history. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI
President Donald Trump waves as he departs the White House Friday for a trip to Atlanta to address and NRA convention. Before the trip, he said in his weekly address that his administration may be the most successful in U.S. history. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

April 28 (UPI) -- In his weekly address Friday, President Donald Trump said his efforts so far have basically eclipsed those of any other U.S. administration in history.

Trump marked the 100-day occasion, which comes Saturday, with the video message.


"I truly believe that the first 100 days of my administration has been just about the most successful in our country's history," he boasted.

"We are bringing back jobs. You ask the people of Michigan, you ask the people of Ohio, you can ask the people of Pennsylvania, see what's happening."

Those typically Democratic states all voted for Trump in November, lending substantially to his election night upset.

"Our country is going up and it's going up fast," Trump added. "Our companies are doing better. They have just announced fantastic profits.

"All because of what's happened in this rather short period of time. And that's just the beginning."


"We are really proud of what we are doing," he continued. "In just 14 weeks, my administration has brought profound change to Washington. The most fundamental change can be found in the relationship between the people and their government.

"My administration is the first in [the] modern political era to confirm a new Supreme Court justice in the first 100 days. ... Perhaps the greatest change of all is the renewal of the American spirit."

This week, the U.S. Senate this week approved the last of his high-profile Cabinet appointments -- which is a mix of conservative politicians and corporate leaders.

The first confirmations occurred the same day Trump took office, Jan. 20, and the final department secretary was greenlighted by the upper chamber on Wednesday.

Jeff B. Sessions
Attorney General of the United States
Took office: February 9

Fresh off a stint as Alabama senator, Sessions, 70, was approved for the top law enforcement position in the country -- a post that runs the Justice Department, determines policy and makes determinations in a vast array of criminal justice matters.

Sessions' nomination and the first few weeks on his tenure have been controversial, not just for supposedly making racist remarks in the mid-1980s -- a scandal that cost him a federal judgeshipunder President Ronald Reagan.


Not long after taking office, Sessions removed himself from any Justice Department investigation into the role Russia may have played in the 2016 U.S. election. He recused himself for not disclosing during his confirmation hearing a meeting with a Russian ambassador last summer. Russia continues to be the subject of three separate U.S. investigations.

John F. Kelly
Secretary of Homeland Security
Took office: January 20

A former Marine general and leader of U.S. Southern Command, Kelly was one of two Cabinet secretaries (with Defense chief James Mattis) who took office the same day as Trump.

Since the start of his tenure, Kelly has been most seen acting in behalf of Trump's ramped-up immigration policy. He has made trips to the U.S.-Mexico border and been the president's point man on some of his most controversial actions to date -- including the border wall promised by Trump and attempts to deny U.S. entry for refugees and immigrants.

A 46-year veteran, Kelly, 66, has added much-needed experience to Trump's Cabinet.

Rex W. Tillerson
Secretary of State
Took office: February 1

One of Trump's most controversial nominations, Tillerson, has brought a wealth of business experience to the top diplomatic post -- but no government acumen. He served for years as CEO of ExxonMobil and took criticism for past business dealings with Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin.


Tillerson narrowly survived confirmation, with a vote of 56-43.

Since taking office, Tillerson has been primarily involved in diplomatic efforts with Mexico. In February, he made his first trip overseas as State chief and held discussions with Russian and British officials.

Elaine L. Chao
Secretary of Transportation
Took office: January 31

Chao is the only Trump appointee who has previously worked at the Cabinet level, having served as labor secretary during the presidency of George W. Bush. She served as deputy treasury secretary under George H.W. Bush from 1989 to 1991.

Chao will be a central figure in Trump's $1 trillion plan to upgrade U.S. infrastructure, including roads and highways.

The 63-year-old transportation chief is married to GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

James N. Mattis
Secretary of Defense
Took office: January 20

Sworn in the same day as Trump, Mattis took over for Ashton Carter at the Pentagon. A Marine Corps veteran, he is well-experienced to serve as the United States' top civilian military executive. As former leader of U.S. Central Command, Mattis brings a wealth of Middle East experience to the role.

Because he is less than seven years removed from active service, his nomination required a waiver from Congress.


Mattis, 66, who retired in 2013, received the second-easiest confirmation of the entire Cabinet -- approved by a Senate vote of 98-1. He also was granted the waiver by both houses.

Ben S. Carson, Jr.
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
Took office: March 2

One of Trump's better-known Cabinet appointees, Carson sparred with the president-elect for months last year as they battled for the GOP nomination. A neurosurgeon by trade, the 65-year-old Carson initially pledged that he would not serve in Trump's Cabinet, but later relented.

"I grew up in the inner city and have spent a lot of time there, and have dealt with a lot of patients from that area and recognize that we cannot have a strong nation if we have weak inner cities," he said.

Carson was confirmed by the full Senate by a vote of 58-41.

Mike R. Pompeo
Director of Central Intelligence
Took office: January 23

A former member of the House Intelligence Committee, Pompeo gave up his congressional seat to serve as Trump's CIA chief.

Confirmed by a vote of 66-32, Pompeo has visited Turkey and Saudi Arabia since taking office.

Republicans faced a stiff challenge in the race to fill his Kansas House seat this month, winning a close vote over surging Democrat James Thompson. Experts say the tight race -- in one of Kansas' traditionally GOP 4th District -- is indicative of at least some backlash against Trump's administration.


Ryan K. Zinke
Secretary of Interior
Took office: March 1

Zinke began his career in politics with a two-year stint in Montana's Senate. Prior to that, he touted his 23-year service as a Navy SEAL, from which he retired with the rank of commander.

Since taking office, he has so far been on of Trump's most visible Cabinet secretaries -- taking the lead in a number of interior issues, including Trump's order this week to review national monument designations made by former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

Zinke has previously shown support for increased drilling activity and mining on public lands -- and believes climate change isn't proven science.

Zinke is also involved in Trump's order to review federal bans on offshore drilling.

He rode a horse to work in Washington on his first day.

Betsy D. DeVos
Secretary of Education
Took office: February 7

A heavyweight Republican donor before joining Trump's team, DeVos, is a major advocate of a national school voucher program -- which would allow parents to use taxpayer money to place their children in private schools.

If Zinke has been Trump's most visible secretary, DeVos has so far been his most controversial. Since taking office, she has been a central figure in Trump's effort to scrap Obama-era efforts to grant bathroom freedom to transgender students.


DeVos was also the most-contested nominee in the Senate. Vice President Mike Pence was forced to cast the deciding vote to break a 50-50 tie.

Nikki Haley
U.N. Ambassador
Took office: January 27

Haley was serving her second term as South Carolina governor when she was tapped as the United States' top ambassador to the United Nations.

Since taking office, she has been central in the diplomatic efforts to hold Russia and Syria accountable for actions involved in the Middle Eastern nation's civil war, now in its seventh year.

E. Scott Pruitt
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator
Took office: February 17

As Oklahoma attorney general, the 48-year-old Pruitt joined other states in suing the Obama administration for its policy to reduce greenhouse emissions at power plants.

Pruitt was confirmed as EPA director by a vote of 52-46.

Tom E. Price
Health and Human Services Secretary
Took office: February 10

The six-term Republican congressman from Georgia, who staunchly opposes the Affordable Care Act, is in a post responsible for Medicare, Medicaid, Tricare, the FDA and various federal medical research agencies.

Among the ACA provisions Price has been most critical of is the requirement that insurance plans cover the cost of contraception, which he has opposed federal funding for but voted in favor of while a member of the Georgia state legislature. The difference, he said in 2012, is that the state was making the decision, rather than the federal government.


Like Pompeo's, the race to fill Price's House seat was also nearly taken this month by a Democrat in Georgia's traditionally Republican 6th District. The challenger, Jon Ossoff, came within two percent of winning the seat outright. Instead, he must now face GOP candidate Karen Handel in a runoff on June 20.

He was confirmed by the Senate, 52-47.

Wilbur L. Ross, Jr.
Secretary of Commerce
Took office: February 28

A fellow billionaire like Trump and DeVos, Ross brings plenty of business experience to a post in which he is expected to dictate U.S. trade policy.

Since he took office, Ross has been ordered by Trump to review U.S. imports of steel and aluminum to see if they impact national security.

Ross, at 79, is the eldest of Trump's Cabinet nominees and has an estimated net worth of nearly $3 billion.

J. Rick Perry
Energy Secretary
Took office: March 2

The former Texas governor's selection for the Energy Department was a slightly unusual one. As a 2012 GOP presidential candidate, he said he favored abolishing the energy department. He was also sharply critical of Trump, calling him a "barking carnival act" when he was a candidate for the 2016 presidential election.


After his nomination, Perry resigned from his role on the board of Energy Transfer Partners, the parent company of the Dakota Access Pipeline, in order to avoid the appearance of conflict of interest.

Steven T. Mnuchin
Treasury Secretary
Took office: February 13

Mnuchin, 53, worked for nearly 20 years at finance house Goldman Sachs before leaving the banking industry and moving west to enter a new career as a film producer. He went on to found RatPac-Dune Entertainment and produce big-budget films like Avatar (2009) and the X-Men film franchise.

Mnuchin has no prior government experience, but did serve as the Trump campaign's finance chair for the past six months.

Since taking office, he has been heavily involved in Trump's efforts to deregulate American business.

David J. Shulkin
Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Took office: February 14

Shulkin is Trump's only Cabinet member to receive unanimous approval by the Senate, a vote of 100-0.

At the VA, he has been instrumental in handling an ongoing crisis in treating American veterans, an issue Trump has made a top priority.

George "Sonny" Perdue
Secretary of Agriculture
Took office: April 25

Perdue was the penultimate member of Trump's Cabinet to receive Senate confirmation, earlier this week.


Perdue served as Georgia governor between 2003 and 2011 and was formerly a state senator.

R. Alexander Acosta
Secretary of Labor
Took office: April 27

Acosta was nominated in mid-February after Trump's first choice, fast food magnate Andrew Puzder, resigned in the wake of a scandal that involved his hiring an undocumented worker in the past.

Acosta, 48, is a former U.S. Attorney in Florida and former head of the civil rights division at the Department of Justice.

The last of Trump's Cabinet secretaries to be sworn in, he was confirmed 60-38 by the Senate this week.

J. Mick Mulvaney
Director of the Office of Management and Budget
Took office: February 16

Rep. Mulvaney is responsible for various fiscal matters in Trump's government -- including the president's efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act. He was heavily involved in the president's budget blueprint unveiled in mid-March.

The South Carolina Republican has been a longtime supporter of Trump's and was an outspoken critic of government spending during President Barack Obama's terms.

Mulvaney, 49, is the second prominent South Carolina public servant in Trump's administration. Gov. Nikki Haley was named as Trump's ambassador to the United Nations.


Dan R. Coats
Director of National Intelligence
Took office: March 16

Coats, a former Indiana senator and ambassador to Germany under George W. Bush, now serves as the chief intelligence officer in Trump's administration.

Linda M. McMahon
Small Business Administrator
Took office: February 14

McMahon was formerly CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment for 12 years. She brings extensive corporate experience to the Small Business Administration..

She unsuccessfully ran for the Senate, from Connecticut, in 2010 and 2012.

Robert E. Lighthizer
United States Trade Representative
Took office: Pending

Though chosen by Trump on January 3, Lighthizer is the last Cabinet-level nominee still awaiting Senate confirmation.

Because he previously represented foreign governments in a trade dispute with the United States, he requires a special waiver from Congress -- like Mattis -- to bypass the Lobbying Disclosure Act. Charlene Barshefsky, President Bill Clinton's trade representative, was granted the waiver in 1997.

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