Obama's First 100 Days Report Card: HuffPost Bloggers Give Their Grades

HuffPost bloggers give Obama their marks on foreign policy, national security, climate change, technology policy, GLBT issues, labor, political strategy, and much, much more.
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In his appointments at almost every agency, Obama has demonstrated a desire to receive a wide range of opinion. But at Treasury, the range of opinion goes all the way from Goldman to Sachs.

The first one hundred days in a presidency are roughly comparable to the first one hundred yards in a mile race. Our president may not have won anything yet, but he is off to a reassuring start.

Crises are too important to waste and the Obama administration is using the many crises it inherited not to go backward but to launch into the new century -- finally.

In his first 100 days, Barack Obama has consistently scored very highly on each of the nine qualities that voters use to evaluate leaders.

Not only have Obama's first 100 days been by far the best of any president of my lifetime, but they began not a day too soon. Ultimately, what stops Obama from getting an A is his approach to addressing finance and banking issues,

While I have some serious concerns, I think Obama deserves big credit both for being bold on many important issues and in establishing confidence in himself as a strong leader.

Obama has repeatedly declared that he would govern as a consensus builder. He wasn't lying. However, there are two ways of achieving consensus.

How each of us feels, lately, as we mull over our progress towards the American dream, is one of the best measures of Obama's job performance that I know, and it is one worth discussing at length instead of resting on the laurels of this or that poll of approval ratings.

Obama's critics can bark as loudly as they wish and continue playing the partisan rhetoric game, but the simple truth is that his first 100 days have achieved major progress.


In the area of financial policy, the Obama administration gets poor marks for its first 100 days. Instead of a letter grade, we'll just say: "needs improvement."

I asked some small business owners how they thought the Obama administration did for small business in its first 100 days. I got a lot of different answers.

Foreign Policy

I resolutely accord President Obama and his foreign policy team a well earned grade of "A" in the conduct of America's national security challenges in the first 100 days of his presidency.

Obama has had a remarkably productive first 100 days on the foreign policy front. It's hard not to like what I see. But let me try.

The task awaiting Obama was massive. And yet, there is a rush to decide how he's doing after 100 days. Donnie Walsh gets two years to revive the Knicks, but the president only gets 100 days to fix the country?

In 100 days, the Obama administration has taken more than 100 actions that are reshaping American foreign policy, reversing the failures of the Bush administration, and renewing America's standing in the world.

President Obama has dramatically re-established American relations with the UN through numerous steps. Overall, he deserves an A- grade for his first 100 days as regards the UN.

Obama has shown a refreshing willingness to discard foreign policy dogmas that no longer apply or have proven false.

National Security

If we kill people, we lose the war. The most significant achievement of the Obama Administration thus far is a consistent and systematic understanding that security as we know it has fundamentally changed.

Afghanistan and Pakistan

No one said this would be easy, and we can take heart that this administration -- as opposed to the last one -- has "shown up."

We haven't seen a president willing to break with his predecessor by prioritizing regional diplomacy and humanitarian aid above military escalation. Here's why Obama gets a 'D' for his first 100 days in Afghanistan.

The Environment and Climate Change

The media just keeps missing -- or messing up -- the story of the century. Future historians will inevitably judge all 21st-century presidents on just two issues: global warming and the clean energy transition.

Barack Obama: The first ______ president. Can we put the word "green" in that blank?

It is clear that the Obama administration does not have a road map for withdrawal from our disastrous dependence on coal, no grand plan for a regulated phase out of mountaintop removal or coal-fired plants.

Women and Reproductive Rights

For those in favor of women's rights, the first 100 days of the Obama administration has been like a honeymoon. We've continually been reminded why we fell in love in the first place. Here's a report card.

We are off to an incredible start, though as everyone involved in improving the long-term health of our nation knows, it's not just about the first 100 days.

NARAL Pro-Choice America will mark this milestone with another reminder of how electing leaders who support the values of freedom and privacy does make a difference in the lives of women and their families.

I've been working for women's rights in Washington, D.C. since the Carter days and I have never seen anything like these first days. The pace is fast, and the outreach is inclusive. It started during the transition.

Health Care

Is Obama behind schedule on defining his health policy? That's the wrong question. He's on a different schedule, one that favors process over policy.


In all three areas of veteran care, while there's a ton to still do, there's been dramatic improvement in Obama's first 100 days.

Technology Policy and the Internet

100 Days into his presidency, and Barack Obama is using online tools as if he was organizing a campaign.

Bogged down and becalmed largely by circumstances beyond its control, it may be months before the Obama team regains its full-power tech policy mojo. It may be longer before they regain the tech chops that made the campaign such a juggernaut.

As early as fall 2007, Obama made a strong commitment to a free-flowing, accessible and open Internet when he unveiled his new media agenda.


Gun Control

Over the last 100 days, the nation has suffered a string of mass shootings taking the lives of 57 people in less than a month. The president's direct response to this gun violence has been minimal.

The recent incidents of gun violence are just discrete examples of the estimated 84 Americans who die on average each day in our nation from guns. Yet in the White House, the response remains muted.


With the glaring exception of the troubled, potentially disastrous bank bailout plan that could undercut any economic recovery, the Obama administration deserves at least an A- when it comes to taking action on behalf of workers.

GLBT Issues

When it comes to actual change in the lives of LGBT people, nothing has been done. Obama has failed to hand in any of his assignments.

The president's hundred days of silence could mean many more years of it for gay troops -- and thousands more unaffordable discharges for our military.

New Orleans

What has Barack Obama meant to the city almost destroyed by federal malfeasance in 2005? The best, and the worst, one can say is that he's lived up to his campaign promises.

Political Strategy

The administration's political strategy isn't perfect, but it's about as close to perfect as any president in modern history. The administration hasn't suffered a single major setback on any legislative priority.

Managing the Media

Obama's ambitions depend on his ability to nudge the news cycle away from the cable network- and Drudge-driven obsession with transient panics and cultural outrages. He's been partially successful so far.


A report card issued this week by the Brennan Center's Liberty and National Security Project suggests that the administration's actions have not consistently lived up to this pledge.

The Media's First 100 Days

The media-driven "100 days" obsession assumes that we're passive actors in turning around the mess Obama has inherited. It assumes that we will wait and see what the administration will do for us.

Today, Media Matters is taking stock of the worst media moments of the first 100 days of the Obama Presidency.

Fox News has gone to tremendous lengths mainstreaming the sometimes violent, revolutionary doomsday rhetoric of the far right, which used to be confined to the extremist fringe.

It's been distressing to watch the emergence of the media's permanent -- preferred -- state of trivial pursuit.

Michelle Obama's First 100 Days

Only the most rigid of traditionalists or activists could assess Michelle Obama with anything less than an "A" grade as the new First Lady.

It wasn't all straight As for the First Lady. Here's why she even deserved a D!

Joe Biden's First 100 Days

Enough already about his first 100 days. What about my first 100 days? After all, who was it who capitalized on his 36 years in the Senate to sell Obama's $787 billion stimulus package.

The Next 100 Days

The next 100 days are likely to be the ones where Obama will have to make history -- or have events overtake him. Here's why.


Obama has demonstrated remarkable mastery of the powers of the presidency to lead the country. Have we mastered the power of the citizenry to empower the president?

As a yardstick of presidential accomplishment, the "First 100 Days" is surely a faulty measure. Lincoln's first one hundred days were miserable, and included the beginning of the Civil War.

Obama is well aware that the 100 days burden weighs heavier on him than any other president in modern times. He's young, liberal, untested, and black.

We have a very real opportunity right now amid the crisis and hope swirling around us to rebuild both the left and radical struggle in this country.

We are happy to say that the first 15 weeks of Obama's presidency have made us proud and have fulfilled his promise of much needed change for our country.

For millions of women, minorities and small business owners all across America it has become painfully clear, President Obama's promise to bring "an end to business as usual in Washington" may not include them.

The fact is that, since leaving office, Bush has graciously faded into the background. He has repeatedly refused to criticize Obama publicly, even as Obama and members of his administration soak in the adulation at his expense.

Today, we're focusing on how the conservatives have chosen to spend their first 100 days.

What is striking is how often the media gets it wrong when measuring up new presidents. Journalists should approach judging a president's first 100 days with some humility.

Obama's first days will be compared to FDR's first 100 days. And to a lesser extent JFK's first 100 days. But the better comparison is with his predecessor George W. Bush.

"It's pure journalistic olestra. The consistent barrage of 'first 100 days'-related news goes through people so quickly that their heads and now their bodies are unable to properly absorb or digest it all."

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