U.S. President Donald Trump made a lot of strongly-worded promises on the campaign trail. He broke from political consensus on many issues. But will he keep his promises? During his time in office, Bombs + Dollars will track how Trump’s policies live up to his rhetoric. We have selected a number of his most important promises, chosen for their importance to his message, how often he expressed them, or because they are particularly big changes from current American policy.

Foreign Policy

Promise Source Status
Back Russia on Syria “If Putin wants to go and knock the hell out of ISIS, I am all for it, 100 percent, and I can’t understand how anybody would be against it. We can’t continue to be the policemen of the world.” – http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/donald-trump-would-back-putin-6808223 – http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/sep/29/donald-trump-let-russia-fight-isis-syria/  
Bomb the shit out of ISIS and take Iraq and Syria’s oil “I’d blow up every single inch. There would be nothing left. And you know what, you’ll get Exxon to come in there and in two months, you ever see these guys, how good they are, the great oil companies? … You put a ring around them. You put a ring.” – http://www.businessinsider.com/donald-trump-bomb-isis-2015-11  
Send 20,000-30,000 ground troops to fight ISIS “We really have no choice. We have to knock out ISIS. I would listen to the generals, but I’m hearing numbers of 20,000 to 30,000.” – http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/11/politics/donald-trump-30000-troops-isis/  
Send very few troops to Syria “I am going to have very few troops on the ground. We’re going to have unbelievable intelligence, which we need; which, right now, we don’t have. We don’t have the people over there.” – http://www.npr.org/2016/05/15/477967990/donald-trump-is-about-to-start-getting-intelligence-briefings  
Renegotiate defense arrangements with Korea, Japan, and other U.S. allies “I would renegotiate so much of everything. I’m going to renegotiate our trade deals where we’re losing with everybody. I’m going to renegotiate our military deals where we’re protecting countries and they’re not living up to the bargain.” – http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/news/2016/07/28/0200000000AEN20160728000400315.html South Korea’s administration claims Trump pledged to defend Korea in a post-election phone call – http://www.dw.com/en/seoul-trump-pledges-south-korea-defense/a-36335014
Force NATO allies to pay more for defense “I think NATO’s great. But it’s got to be modernized. And countries that we’re protecting have to pay what they’re supposed to be paying.” – http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/news/2016/07/28/0200000000AEN20160728000400315.html  
Place Syrian refugees in the U.S. “I hate the concept of it, but on a humanitarian basis, you have to. … But you know, it’s living in hell in Syria. There’s no question about it. They’re living in hell, and something has to be done.” – http://www.politico.com/story/2015/09/donald-trump-syrian-refugees-213430  
Send Syrian refugees in the U.S. back “I’m putting people on notice that are coming here from Syria as part of this mass migration, that if I win, they’re going back! … A 200,000-man army maybe, or if you said 50,000 or 80,000 or 100,000, we got problems and that could be possible. I don’t know that it is, but it could be possible so they’re going back — they’re going back.” – http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2016-election/donald-trump-new-hampshire-syrian-refugees-are-going-back-n436616  
Establish “safe zones” in the Middle East for refugees “For the price of resettling 1 refugee in the United States, 12 could be resettled in a safe zone in their home region.” – http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/donald-trump-immigration-address-transcript-227614  
Bring back waterboarding He also said on that show he would bring back waterboarding. At a debate in February, he doubled down, saying he would do “a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding.” Trump’s nominee for attorney general, Jeff Sessions, said during a confirmation hearing that he felt waterboarding was illegal.

Trump said in an interview published November 23 interview with the New York Times that Gen. James Mattis advised him that torture doesn’t work, but Trump, while expressing respect for Mattis, didn’t appear convinced. He said: “I’m not saying it [Mattis’ answer] changed my mind. Look, we have people that are chopping off heads and drowning people in steel cages and we’re not allowed to waterboard. But I’ll tell you what, I was impressed by that answer. It certainly does not — it’s not going to make the kind of a difference that maybe a lot of people think. If it’s so important to the American people, I would go for it.”

Vice president elect Mike Pence said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” Nov. 20 that nothing is off the table: “We’re going to have a president again who will never say what we’ll never do.”

Kill civilian family members of suspected terrorists At the same debate Trump defended his previously-stated plane to kill family members of terrorists.  
Keep the Guantanamo Bay military prison open In February, Trump issued a statement promising to keep “Gitmo” open: http://www.donaldjtrump.com/media/donald-trump-vows-to-keep-gitmo-open-while-in-hanahan At a campaign rally around that time, he said, “Guantanamo Bay — which by the way, we are keeping open! And we’re going to load it up with some bad dudes. We’re going to load it up.”  
Consider imprisoning American citizens in Guantanamo Bay Trump said in August 2016 that he’d be open to the idea of holding American citizens accused of terrorism at the Guantanamo Bay prison and trying them in military tribunals. “Well, I know that they want to try them in our regular court systems, and I don’t like that at all, I don’t like that at all. I would say they could be tried there, that’ll be fine,” he said in an interview with the Miami Herald. – http://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics-government/election/donald-trump/article95144337.html


Promise Source Status
Ban Muslim’s from enterring the U.S. “Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” – https://www.donaldjtrump.com/press-releases/donald-j.-trump-statement-on-preventing-muslim-immigration At his confirmation hearing, Trump’s choice for attorney general said he opposed the proposal made by Trump to ban Muslims from coming to the United States. Trump’s administration has previously talked about reinstating a Bush-era program that required visitors from certain countries to report to government offices. The Bush-era program didn’t ban Muslims.
Ban immigration from “terrorist countries” “He also promised as president to “suspend immigration from areas of the world where there is a proven history of terrorism against the United States, Europe or our allies, until we fully understand how to end these threats.” – NBC News http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2016-election/donald-trump-scotland-muslim-ban-i-dont-want-people-terror-n598956 Trump’s administration has said it would apply a program similar to a Bush-era program that required extra scrutiny on visitors from certain countries, but it didn’t ban visitors from those countries.
Institute an ideological screening test for immigrants “In the Cold War, we had an ideological screening test. The time is long overdue to develop a new screening test for the threats we face today. I call it extreme vetting. I call it extreme, extreme vetting.” – http://edition.cnn.com/2016/08/14/politics/donald-trump-isis-fight/index.html “Another reform involves new screening tests for all applicants that include an ideological certification to make sure that those we are admitting to our country share our values and love our people.” – http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/donald-trump-immigration-address-transcript-227614 During Kris Kobach’s November 21 meeting with Trump, the document Kobach shared included a proposal to “add extreme vetting questions for high-risk aliens.” The questions would ask them about “support for Sharia law, jihad, equality of men and women, the United States Constitution.” – https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/11/21/trump-adviser-accidentally-reveals-border-wall-immigrant-tracking-ideas/
Build a wall The highlight of his platform, he noted he would “build a wall” at the Mexican border at most of his campaign events. He often said it would be a “big, beautiful wall” and emphasized how tall it would be. At a primary debate, he said, “The wall just got 10 feet higher” in response to Mexico’s president’s refusal to pay for it. On August 25, 2015, his campaign issued the following statement: “Jeb Bush just talked about my border proposal to build a ‘fence.’ It’s not a fence, Jeb, it’s a WALL, and there’s a BIG difference.” Trump’s administration is reportedly arranging with the Republican Congress to appropriate funds for some kind of structure on the border. Trump hasn’t said whether it will be a wall or fence. In his first interview after being elected, he said to CBS’s “60 Minutes” that it could be a fence “in some places.” The administration is arguing that they don’t even need to pass a law; a 2006 law called for the construction of a fence (which is already mostly built).
Get Mexico to pay for it The other highlight of his platform, which always followed his refrain about building a wall. Mexico says it won’t pay for any structure on the border. Trump is calling on U.S. Congress to appropriate funds for the structure. Although Americans will be paying for the “wall”, Trump supporter Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY) argued that the U.S. could force Mexico to pay by exerting economic pressure.
Deport all 11-12 million illegal immigrants from U.S. Original plans called for deporting all illegal immigrants (estimated to be 11-12 million, or more if minor children are included). – http://edition.cnn.com/2015/11/11/politics/donald-trump-deportation-force-debate-immigration/index.html – https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/aug/27/donald-trump-deport-11-million-migrants-is-that-even-possible On “60 Minutes” Trump pledged to initially deport illegal immigrants with criminal records. See below.
Deport millions of illegal immigrants who committed crimes In August Trump began focusing primarily on deporting illegal immigrants convicted or suspected of crimes. He identified the number being in the millions. “What we are going to do is get the people that are criminal and have criminal records, gang members, drug dealers, where a lot of these people, probably 2 million, it could be even 3 million, we are getting them out of our country or we are going to incarcerate,” he said on “60 Minutes”, although it is unclear how many illegal immigrants actually have a criminal record, and the 2-3 million number he cites is vastly exaggerated, according to FactCheck. – https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/11/13/donald-trump-plans-to-immediately-deport-2-to-3-million-undocumented-immigrants/ – http://www.factcheck.org/2015/08/trumps-immigration-plan/
Pass mandatory minimum sentence law for illegal immigrants “On my first day in office, I am also going to ask Congress to pass “Kate’s Law” – named for Kate Steinle – to ensure that criminal aliens convicted of illegal reentry face receive strong mandatory minimum sentences.” – http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/donald-trump-immigration-address-transcript-227614  
Triple the size of the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement force “We are going to triple the number of ICE deportation officers.” – http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/donald-trump-immigration-address-transcript-227614  
Create a Deportation Task Force “Within ICE, I am going to create a new special Deportation Task Force, focused on identifying and removing quickly the most dangerous criminal illegal immigrants in America who have evaded justice.” – http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/donald-trump-immigration-address-transcript-227614  
Rescind executive orders giving temporary legal status to some young illegal immigrants “We will immediately terminate President Obama’s two illegal executive amnesties, in which he defied federal law and the constitution to give amnesty to approximately 5 million illegal immigrants.” – http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/donald-trump-immigration-address-transcript-227614


Promise Source Status
Renegotiate the national debt “I would borrow, knowing that if the economy crashed, you could make a deal…And if the economy was good, it was good. So, therefore, you can’t lose.” – http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/07/us/politics/donald-trumps-idea-to-cut-national-debt-get-creditors-to-accept-less.html  
Repay the national debt in 8 years https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/in-turmoil-or-triumph-donald-trump-stands-alone/2016/04/02/8c0619b6-f8d6-11e5-a3ce-f06b5ba21f33_story.html – https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2016/04/02/transcript-donald-trump-interview-with-bob-woodward-and-robert-costa/?hpid=hp_rhp-top-table-main_trumppresidency-7pm%3Ahomepage%2Fstory  
Would sell off government assets “The United States government owns more real estate than anybody else, more land than anybody else, more energy than anybody else. We can get rid of government buildings we’re not using, we can extract the energy from government lands, we can do all kinds of things to extract value from the assets that we hold.” – Trump economic advisor Barry Bennet http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2016-election/donald-trump-s-unusual-plan-lower-national-debt-sell-government-n549946  
Threaten to raise tariffs to between 30-45 percent ” I would do a tax, and the tax — let me tell you what the tax should be. The tax should be 45 percent.” – http://www.nytimes.com/politics/first-draft/2016/01/07/donald-trump-says-he-favors-big-tariffs-on-chinese-exports/ “What I said to the New York Times, is that, we have great power, economic power over China and if we wanted to use that and the amount — where the 45 percent comes in, that would be the amount they saw their devaluations that we should get.” – http://bombsdollars.com/index/index.php/2016/01/15/donald-trump-is-wrong-chinese-imports-to-the-u-s-are-taxed/ – http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-trump-trade-idUSKCN0WQ0WG Trump has picked China critic Peter Navarro as a trade advisor. Navarro advocates changing policy with China.

Trump is floating a 5% tariff on trade that he might try to enact via executive order.

Renegotiate trade deals “I’m renegotiating all of our deals, the big trade deals that we’re doing so badly on.” – https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/in-turmoil-or-triumph-donald-trump-stands-alone/2016/04/02/8c0619b6-f8d6-11e5-a3ce-f06b5ba21f33_story.html A memo from Trump’s transition team outlines a plan of reviewing and attacking NAFTA and Chinese trade. The process would begin with a review of NAFTA and by day 200 Trump would supposedly be considering whether to withdraw from NAFTA. At the same time the administration would be considering whether to label China a currency manipulator. http://www.cnn.com/2016/11/15/politics/donald-trump-trade-memo-transition/index.html

According to Brad Setster, Senior Fellow and Acting Director of the Maurice R. Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies, “[I]f China stopped all management (“e.g. manipulation”) and let the yuan float against the dollar, China’s currency would drop. Possibly precipitously. China’s export machine would get a new boost.” – http://blogs.cfr.org/setser/2016/11/15/china-manipulation-day-one-the-1988-trade-act-and-the-bennet-amendment/

In a video statement, Trump said that withdrawing from the TPP, an Asian trade deal that has not yet been formally ratified, would be one of his first acts. Japan is responding by considering joining an Asian trade arrangement led by China. – https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/21/donald-trump-100-days-plans-video-trans-pacific-partnership-withdraw

Have factories “moved” or built in the U.S. “I’ll bring back our jobs from China, from Mexico, from Japan, from so many places. I’ll bring back our jobs, and I’ll bring back our money.” – https://www.yahoo.com/news/economists-dump-trump-boast-bring-jobs-back-china-072657240–finance.html?ref=gs “I would call up the head of Ford, who I know. If I was president, I’d say, ‘Congratulations. I understand that you’re building a nice $2.5 billion car factory in Mexico and that you’re going to take your cars and sell them to the United States, zero tax. So I would say, ‘Congratulations. That’s the good news. Let me give you the bad news . . . we’re going to charge you a 35 percent tax.’ ” – https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/the-trump-platform-because-i-said-so/2015/08/01/4684802c-36f7-11e5-9739-170df8af8eb9_story.html Trump held a press conference at Carrier and claimed he saved 1,100 jobs. Later the union rep pointed out that the deal Carrier struck resulted in 800 jobs remaining in Indiana, not 1,100, and a plant was still being opened in Mexico. Trump attacked the union rep on Twitter.
Approve the Keystone XL pipeline and appropriate profits for the government “When they do this pipeline, it’s going to be a very profitable thing and it’s really Canada oil coming down — so it’s not — I like Canada, I want these people to be happy, but I want the developers of the pipeline to give the United States a big, big chunk of the profits or even ownership rights, like I do in business.” – https://www.thestar.com/news/world/2016/01/24/donald-trump-demands-big-chunk-of-keystone-xl-profits-for-the-us.html  
Massive infrastructure program In August 2016, Trump promised to spend over $500 billion over five years on new infrastructure. – http://www.foxbusiness.com/politics/2016/08/02/trump-promises-to-double-clinton-infrastructure-spending-plan.html  
Repeal Obamacare Trump has often proposed repealing or eliminating Obamacare, although he also says that he will keep certain elements of Obamacare. Republicans in Senate are having trouble repealing Obamacare. They lack the 60 votes required to break a filibuster, so they will not be able to repeal many regulations imposed by Obamacare. However they can repeal the subsidies and some other fiscal parts of Obamacare with 50 votes via the reconciliation process. However, they are having trouble getting all 52 members on board, as some members fear the healthcare markets will be destroyed by repealing subsidies and parts of Obamacare, while continuing to require people to purchase healthcare and health insurance companies to cover people with preexisting conditions. Republicans are also far from agreement on a plan to “replace” Obamacare.
Mandate health insurance companies cover people with pre-existing conditions At the CNN-Telemundo primary debate on February 25, 2016, Trump said, “The insurance companies are making an absolute fortune. Yes, they will keep preexisting conditions, and that would be a great thing.” He continued to state that his plan would cover people with pre-existing conditions for the entire campaign. At a late campaign rally, Mike Pence said, “Donald Trump and I will protect Americans with pre-existing conditions so that they’re not charged more or denied treatment just because they’ve been sick. As long as they pay their premiums consistently.”  
Cover everyone On “60 Minutes” in September 2015, Trump argued for universal coverage: “Everybody’s got to be covered. This is an un-Republican thing for me to say because a lot of times they say, ‘No, no, the lower 25 percent that can’t afford private.’ But… … I am going to take care of everybody. I don’t care if it costs me votes or not. Everybody’s going to be taken care of much better than they’re taken care of now.” On multiple occasions thereafter, including at a debate and on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”, he said, “We’re not going to let people die in the streets.” Trump advisor Kelly Anne-Conway said in an interview that no one who has coverage now will lose coverage due to the repeal of Obamacare. But Republicans have said many times that they will repeal provisions of Obamacare, including the expansion of Medicaid and subsidies for the poor and lower class. Those provisions help cover some people. Republicans in the House would not answer whether or not their plan would cover everybody. – http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/312934-gop-wont-promise-obamacare-fix-will-cover-all
Allow consumers to purchase health insurance plans outside their home state At the CNN-Telemundo debate, Trump also said, “We should have gotten rid of the lines around the state so there’s competition. … You get rid of the lines, it brings in competition. So, instead of having one insurance company taking care of New York, or Texas, you’ll have many. They’ll compete, and it’ll be a beautiful thing.”


Promise Source Status
Prosecute Clinton During debate, Trump asserted that Clinton got off the hook when the FBI cleared her of any crime with regard to her use of a private email server and asserted that if he were president she would be in jail. Since his election, Clinton has told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that he “didn’t give much thought” to the question of prosecuting Clinton. In another interview with 60 Minutes he went further, saying, “I don’t want to hurt them [the Clintons]. They’re good people.” – http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/trump-backs-off-clinton-prosecution-i-dont-want-to-hurt-them/article/2607293
Implement stop ‘n frisk “I would do stop-and-frisk. I think you have to. We did it in New York, it worked incredibly well and you have to be proactive and, you know, you really help people sort of change their mind automatically, you understand, you have to have, in my opinion, I see what’s going on here, I see what’s going on in Chicago, I think stop-and-frisk.” – http://www.nbcnews.com/card/trump-stop-frisk-needed-stop-violence-black-communities-n652121 Confronted at a presidential debate with Clinton about the fact that stop ‘n frisk, the practice of stopping and searching people on the street, was ruled unconstitutional, Trump defended the practice and argued that a different court might come to a different outcome.  
Prevent suspected terrorists from purchasing guns “If somebody is on a watch list and an enemy of state and we know it’s an enemy of state, I would keep them away, absolutely,” Trump said on ABC’s “This Week” in November 2015.  
Keep abortion legal (Don’t change present law) In an interview with CBS on April 1, 2016, Trump said, “I would’ve preferred states’ rights. I think it would’ve been better if it were up to the states. But right now, the laws are set…. At this moment, the laws are set. And I think we have to leave it that way.” Trump has flip-flopped, saying now that he will appoint anti-abortion justices to the Supreme Court, with the intent of having Roe v. Wade overturned.
Ban abortion On April 1, 2016, the Trump campaign released the following statement: “Mr. Trump gave an accurate account of the law as it is today and made clear it must stay that way now — until he is president. Then he will change the law through his judicial appointments and allow the states to protect the unborn. There is nothing new or different here.” In a post-election interview with “60 Minutes,” Trump once again said that he would appoint anti-abortion justices who might overturn Roe v. Wade: “Having to do with abortion, what it– if it ever were overturned, it would go back to the states, so it would go back to the states.”
Allow abortion in the cases of rape and risks to life “Ronald Reagan had those same exceptions. And many Republicans have those same exceptions,” Trump said on “Meet the Press” in August 2015. If Roe v. Wade is overturned, the possibility exists that some states would not allow abortion in the cases of rape or risks to the life and health of the mother.
Appoint judges who would overturn abortion rights In May 2016, Trump said he would appoint anti-abortion judges to the Supreme Court: “I will protect it and the biggest way to protect it is through the Supreme Court and putting people in the court.” At a presidential debate with Clinton in October, Trump reaffirmed his goal of having abortion rights (Roe v. Wade) overturned at the Supreme Court: “If we put another two or perhaps three justices on, that will happen. And that will happen automatically, in my opinion, because I am putting pro-life justices on the court.” The Roe v. Wade decision from 1971 established that the right to abortion is a constitutionally-protected right. Social conservatives have often wanted to see a new court overturn the long-established ruling. If it is overturned, state governments could ban abortion in their own state. Currently there is one opening on the Supreme Court to be filled, and Trump continued to say that he would appoint an anti-abortion justice.
Stop government funding to Planned Parenthood At the CNN-Telemundo primary debate on February 25, 2016, Trump said, “But millions and millions of women — cervical cancer, breast cancer — are helped by Planned Parenthood. So you can say whatever you want, but they have millions of women going through Planned Parenthood that are helped greatly. And I wouldn’t fund it. I would defund it because of the abortion factor, which they say is 3 percent. I don’t know what percentage it is. They say it’s 3%. But I would defund it, because I’m pro-life.”  
Eliminate environmental protection agency When asked by Sean Hannity whether he would eliminate any federal agencies, he answered, “Department of Environmental, I mean, the DEP is killing us environmentally, it’s just killing our businesses.” The federal environmental agency is the EPA.  
Eliminate or cut the size of the Department of Education On the same episode of Hannity’s show, Trump also mentioned eliminating the Department of Education. At a Fox News primary debate in March, he suggested the possibility of eliminating the DOE, but he was not definite: “I may cut Department of Education.” But he has often been in favor of at least cutting the DOE. He said at the South Carolina Tea Party Convention in January 2015, “You could cut that way, way, way down,” and he has also said in August 2015 that it could be left in “little pieces.”