At 4 pm ET today, it will mark exactly 100 hours since Barack Obama became the 44th President of the United States. The first week on the job has been a very busy one for the new White House, as the Obama administration has worked quickly to repair the damage done under the last eight years of President Bush.
As President Obama indicated in his inauguration speech, he is seeking to chart a new way forward in domestic and foreign policy. Obama has made a clean break from the Bush legacy in his early going, undertaking a number of actions that the former President would never have considered. ThinkProgress has compiled a report documenting Obama’s record so far:
The Bush Record: In his final months, the Bush administration issued a series of “midnight regulations” that gutted safeguards protecting health, safety, the environment, and the public’s general welfare.
Obama’s Clean Break: Hours after his inauguration, Obama ordered a freeze on new regulations at all government agencies and departments and the withdrawal of all final or proposed regulations not yet published in the Federal Register.
Obama’s Clean Break: Two days into his presidency, Obama called on U.S. military leaders to start to plan for a responsible withdrawal.
The Bush Record: In his first term, Bush — in contrast to President Bill Clinton — “generally avoided robust efforts” to resolve the Middle East conflict. Bush demeaned diplomacy with “terrorists and radicals,” likening it to the “appeasement” of Nazi Germany.
Obama’s Clean Break: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton rejected the “rigid ideology” of Bush and pledged to exercise “smart power.” Stressing diplomacy, Obama and Clinton “appointed high-level emissaries to handle the Arab-Israeli issue and Pakistan and Afghanistan.”
The Bush Record: Torture began with the drafting of a secret legal memo holding that Bush could authorize interrogators to violate anti-torture laws. Bush’s senior-most officials approved torture that, in some cases, lead to death.
Obama’s Clean Break: Obama signed executive orders ending the CIA’s secret prisons and ending torture by requiring interrogations to abide by the Army Field Manual.