You made me promises promises
You knew you'd never keep
Why do I believe
We looked at Obama's campaign promises last April, but it's never too soon to hold your President's feet to the fire again. ...Or, at least, you know, criticize him on a small blog he'll never hear of. We'll start with Obama's overall record for keeping or breaking promises, with a comparison to where he was last April.
Promises kept: 173 (+39)
Promises broken: 63 (+21)
Compromised promises: 52 (+12)
Promises stalled: 67 (-3)
Promises in the works: 151 (-67)
(The numbers don't zero out because a few promises haven't been rated.)
Now let's take a closer look at those promises. Specifically, what would the nation look like today if it were being led by Candidate Obama rather than President Obama:
20% - Capital gains tax for individuals earning over $200,000 or couples earning over $250,000. Currently still 15%. Kept as part of the Bush tax cut extension.
$50,000 - Income level below which senior citizens would not be taxed. No steps taken to keep this promise; seniors still taxed the same as those of us not responsible for ruining the economy.
$25,000 - Maximum value for no-bid contracts. No such instruction was issued by the White House Office of Management and Budget.
16,000 - Size of the Peace Corps in 2011, doubled from 8,000. Current plan will only raise the number to 11,000, and will take until 2016 to get there.
5 - Days of public comment on the White House website before signing any non-emergency bill. The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act was signed 2 days after being passed with no White House hosted public vetting. The State Children's Health Insurance Program was signed hours after being passed. The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act was signed 2 days after being passed.
2020 - Year man returns to the moon. The moon-capable Constellation program was canceled in 2011. With the retirement of the Space Shuttle program (which was capable only of low orbit and never able to embark on a lunar mission), we will have no manned space flight program at all.
$500 - The amount each individual received for relief from high gas prices, funded by a windfall tax on oil companies. The Obama administration has since dropped the proposal. Gas prices were at a then-record high of $4.11 per gallon.
1.5 million - Number of Armenian genocide victims recognized by the government. Obama had previously criticized Condoleeza Rice for firing an ambassador who referred to the Post WWI slaughter as a genocide and promised to give the event its due recognition. After the House Foreign Affairs Committee passed a resolution to recognize the genocide, the Obama administration worked to kill it and Obama now avoids using the term 'genocide' in referring to the killings.
9 million - Foreclosures prevented through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). During his campaign, Obama promised to create a $10 billion dollar fund to help homeowners avoid foreclosure through loan modifications. Obama followed through on creating the fund, and then some. TARP got a whopping $75 billion. However, TARP managed to only help 500,000 homeowners avoid foreclosure.
$9.6 billion - Federal funding for cancer research. Obama promised to double federal funding, then at $4.8 billion. It has increased, up to $5.2 billion, but is still far short of the original promise.
7 - Minimum days of sick leave employers must provide employees. The Healthy Families Act would have provided 1 hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked (good news lawyers, you get to go home for 3 hours each weekend!), but died in committee.
5 million - Number of displaced Iraqi refugees who have been able to return home. No action was ever taken on this promise.
200,000 - Number of fuel efficient cars purchased by the federal government. On the campaign trail, Candidate Obama promised that every car purchased by the federal government would have a flex-fuel tank, meaning it could run on a gas/ethanol blend with up to 85% ethanol. This conflicted with his simultaneous promise to convert the entire White House fleet to plug-in cars within his first year of office. While both types of cars are fuel efficient, plug-ins are not flex-fuel. Roughly half the vehicles purchased under the Obama administration have been flex-fuel. The White House still does not have a plug-in fleet.
2 - Days each year all major news networks are preempted with mind-numbing boredom. Obama promised each year to give a State of the World and State of Our Energy speech. Sometimes breaking promises is okay.