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The First 100 Days of President Trump

On Friday, May 12th, we went to the City Club for a panel discussion regarding "The First 100 Days of President Trump" as the program was entitled. The panel consisted of Dr. David B. Cohen, Professor of Political Science and Fellow at the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron; Mr. Rob Frost, Chairman of the Cuyahoga Republican Party; Mr. Don Gonyea, National Political Correspondent at NPR; Ms. Jessica Wehrman, Washington Correspondent at "The Columbus Dispatch" and it was moderated by "Ideastream" reporter/producer Ms. Danielle Snipes who said that there has never been a dull moment during these 100 days which was one thing that all of the panelists as well as the City Club audience agreed on.

Another thing that we all agreed on was we wished that there was more time for an even more in-depth discussion of very encompassing happenings that have occurred since the President took office in January but within a half hour/45 minutes quite a few points were touched upon including the firing of F.B.I. Director Comey and the timing of it; how the investigation of the President's ties to the Russians will be conducted; the steadfast loyalty of President Trump's ardent supporters (still strong although independents are wavering a bit and the democrats do not like him at all); his popularity ratings (not so good); the President's accomplishments (the Gorsuch appointment, Keystone XL Oil Pipeline approval, bombings in Syria and Afghanistan); the opposition to the President which is very much in evidence (i.e. the Women's and the Science marches) but still not unified; his relations with the legislative branch of the Federal government; and how the 2018 elections might impact the future.

What we really enjoyed, though, was what was said about the President's bold personality and his use of twitter:

***Ms. Wehrman said his tweets have caused great confusion because he sometimes contradicts his staff.

***Likewise, Dr. Cohen said that he believed the White House Chief of Staff would probably like to take the President's phone away from him because not only does he contradict his staff; he contradicts himself.

***Mr. Frost said that the President is "intentionally disruptive" because he wants to draw attention to important matters and he distrusts the official media with good reason. Mr. Frost went on to compare President Trump's tweets with F.D.R.'s fireside chats and believed that the President had often made fine use of them to, in fact, clear up confusion. Let us say that even though we do not always agree with Mr. Frost, he is a very articulate spokesperson for what he believes in and he certainly was on this day.

***Mr. Gonyea said that the President Trump'stweets are a "window into his psyche."

Unfortunately, President Trump's immigration policies were not discussed and we were not able to get a question in during the Q and A. We did talk to a couple of the panelists afterwards about the possibility of Congress/the Senate challenging the President in this area and they indicated that such a thing remained to be seen.

During lunch, we sat with Mr. Robert B. Weltman, Mr. Scott Weltman, and Mr. David S. Brown all from "Weltman, Weinberg, & Reis Co. LPA" who said to give their best to Ms. Margaret W. Wong.

Before lunch we visited with two relatively new City Club members who were Professor Kitty Jarisian (now retired) who has taught music education at Baldwin-Wallace College and the Cleveland Institute of Music and Ms. Donna Rae Smith, Founder and CEO of "Bright Side, Inc."

In addition, we had a great conversation with a young student of Dr. Cohen's who recently attended a Fox News gathering regarding President Trump's First 100 Days that took place at "Stolle Machinery" a manufacturing plant in North Canton. The audience was composed of working class people whomostly seemed supportive of President Trump.

Overall, she believed the event was quite staged because surveys were distributed and it seemed like those who got to talk on-camera were the ones who answered essay questions in a way that reflected a certain viewpoint. Nevertheless she was very glad that she went because she found it interesting to listen to the people's perspectives and "I wanted to understand why they felt the way that they did."


Michael Patterson

Community Liaison,

Margaret W. Wong & Assoc. Co., LLC