Open thread on Obama's 100th day in office

Please share any thoughts about President Barack Obama's first 100 days in office in this thread. Are you thrilled, satisfied, or disappointed? What have been his best and worst decisions so far, in your opinion?

Congress marked the occasion by approving the president's $3.5 trillion budget outline in the House and in the Senate.

I will update later with highlights from the president's press conference this evening.

UPDATE: The consensus seems to be that Obama did very well at the press conference. Over at Popular Progressive, Gark says the president hit a home run on the question about what surprised, troubled, enchanted and humbled him.

Huffington Post has the full transcript from the press conference here. I particularly liked his comments about bipartisanship, and I've bolded my favorite remarks:

I do think that, to my Republican friends, I want them to realize that me reaching out to them has been genuine. I can't sort of define bipartisanship as simply being willing to accept certain theories of theirs that we tried for eight years and didn't work and the American people voted to change.

But there are a whole host of areas where we can work together. And I've said this to people like Mitch McConnell . I said, look, on health care reform, you may not agree with me that I -- we should have a public plan. That may be philosophically just too much for you to swallow.

On the other hand, there are some areas like reducing the costs of medical malpractice insurance where you do agree with me. If I'm taking some of your ideas and giving you credit for good ideas, the fact that you didn't get 100 percent can't be a reason every single time to oppose my position.

And if that is how bipartisanship is defined, a situation in which basically, wherever there are philosophical differences, I have to simply go along with ideas that have been rejected by the American people in a historic election, you know, we're probably not going to make progress.

If, on the other hand, the definition is that we're open to each other's ideas, there are going to be differences, the majority will probably be determinative when it comes to resolving just hard, core differences that we can't resolve, but there is a whole host of other areas where we can work together, then I think we can make progress.

  • Satisfied to have reason, intellect, and compassion.

    I've been a strong Obama supporter since fall '07, and I'm sure there was a time when I was derided by some as nothing more than a kool-aid drinking, messiah-worshipping, Obamabot.  Watching the press conference this evening, though, validated the reasons behind my decision to support Obama.

    I never expected miracles; I didn't anticipate a president with whom I would agree 100%; I wasn't looking for the world to change over night.  I expected reasonable decision making, informed by facts and not ideology.  What a relief to see that and more behind that podium tonight.

    Best decisions?  Remains to be seen, but I'm intrigued to watch what Arne Duncan does as Sec. of Education.  I have a friend whose husband works on programming for a company that is developing electronic educational database records (similar to the concept of electronic medical records), and they're in talks with Duncan about running a possible pilot program in Iowa as early as next year.  Forward thinking education reform is one of my pet issues as an educator, and I'm seeing some promising signs from this administration.

    Also, the decision to publicly take responsibility for mistakes should not be underplayed.  As a political decision, I think it's brilliant.  I've never seen my conservative-leaning, 75-year old father quite as impressed as he was the day he heard Obama say, "I screwed up," (regarding administration appointees with tax problems).  Ethically, personal accountability in our leaders is quite the breath of fresh air.

    Worst decisions?  I wish I understood the complexities of the economy to feel like I was qualified to comment.  I don't like some of what I've seen, but I'm also not in the room and can't grasp the full implications of inaction, or even suggest better actions.  Maybe the worst decision they've made on the economy is not finding a way to explain their decisions so the average voter/taxpayer understands why some of the huge payouts have been necessary.

    Oh, and the shorts on the golf course thing...bad call there, Mr. President.  Your knees are really just too knobby to pull off that look.

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