Obama made 510 campaign promises

The number is more than double those made by candidates before. And guess what? Someone will be watching.

I love the Obameter. I’ll be putting it on the site links to the left.

510. Dang! Maybe we should start a pool on which ones are actually accomplished.


  1. This is neat, I like it. Anything in the name of transparency, and it seems pretty fair also.

  2. Randy in Richmond says:

    One of his promises was to close Gitmo. Did anybody else see the ‘smooth signing ceremony’ today on this issue. I feel safer, don’t you.
    And anybody who really thinks the facility will actually be closed in a year is dreaming.

  3. The Lorax says:

    It’s not about personal safety, it’s about the rule of law and rejecting torture. My, you are hugely partisan.

  4. Well if that isn’t the pot calling the kettle black. (We can still use the word black, can’t we?)

  5. Randy in Richmond says:

    Than I misunderstood the President’s spokesman , I think his name is Gibbs, when he just said because of closing Gitmo America will be “safer and stronger”. I guess I’m not supposed to comment on current events or it makes me partisan. And it’s politics at work here, not the law.


  6. I must say I love the Obameter. We should have one of these for all politicians! Very cool… Hey just because I support Obama doesn’t mean his feet shouldn’t be held to the fire, if anything it means we have to watch even closer.

  7. I heard a clip of the signing ceremony. Can’t say I recall a president asking, is that right, —-? (I couldn’t make out the name) or getting so much clarification on something he supposedly crafted. It rather reminded me of a husband telling a story but deferring to his wife for the details.
    I later Googled it and got this link http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28788175/

    It doesn’t seem that they really know what they are going to do with the detainees, just that they are closing the prison. I would have preferred a plan first, then the fulfillment of the promise.

    I agree that every politician should have a Promise-o-meter–even the local ones.

  8. Randy in Richmond says:

    You describe what went on very well.

  9. The rule of law is about personal safety. Do you remember this: “In Germany they came first for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time no one was left to speak up.”

    Me, I feel safer.

  10. Randy in Richmond says:

    How do you feel safer? The rule of law, US Constitutional law, has never applied to alien, unlawful enemy combatants. The rights we have as American citizens do not apply to our enemy-thus the detention of the Japanese during WWII by a liberal president FDR. Sure, you can ‘feel’ safer because you want it to be Sept. 10th but we can’t go back as much as we would all like to. The US has tried to place many of these combatants back in their country of origin but they won’t take them. During the War between the States, President Lincoln, the current Obama du jour, suspended habeas corpus even against Americans-the only time that’s ever been done.

    I have always liked the quote you use above but fail to see it’s relevence here. In Germany the Jews, communists, unionists, Catholics, and Protestants were all Germans. No American has lost any right relevant to Gitmo-yet.

  11. By necessity, at least a third of those promises should be impossible to obtain. Obama did promise both sides of a lot of issues.

  12. Randy, I don’t know where to begin, so I’ll be brief. The fact that the US government has determined ANYONE to be without legal rights is disconcerting to say the least. We may not have suspended habeas corpus, but we’ve certainly ignored the principle at will.

  13. The idea that the Gitmo prisoners should receive US Citizen rights/trials baffles me. I don’t think the military read them their rights when captured! (Miranda)

    Heard Murtha said the detainees could come to Penn. Wonder how his constituents feel about that!

  14. I’m not suggesting we naturalize them, Kyle, just that we should respect our own military standards of conduct and international conventions regarding prisoner rights. I believe the President formed a panel of military people to sort that out.

  15. Randy in Richmond says:

    As a college freshman I learned a valuable lesson from my English professor. I handed in what I thought was a well researched paper and the professor called me in to discuss it. He asked me about several books on my bibliography and then about their authors. I didn’t have a clue what the authors believed or their backgrounds. He gave me a ‘C’ on the paper for not checking this out. I thought of this today as I wondered how easily everyone in differing camps liked the Obameter. I like the idea too. But as I read the promises kept, I got suspicious. The Obameter shows Promise No. 125 as kept, so we can mark that one off, right? It reads, “Direct Military leaders to end war in Iraq”. Here is Obama’s statement after meeting with the Ambassador to Iraq and military leaders:

    “This afternoon, I met with our Ambassador to Iraq, the commander in Iraq, and the overall theater commander in the region in order to get a full update on the situation in Iraq. Key members of my cabinet and senior national security officials also participated in this meeting.

    “The meeting was productive and I very much appreciated receiving assessments from these experienced and dedicated individuals. During the discussion, I asked the military leadership to engage in additional planning necessary to execute a responsible military drawdown from Iraq.”

    President Bush and General Petraeus have already put this process in motion, at least in part.


    Obama’s statement gives no numbers, no timelines, no dates. “Additional planning” for a “responsible drawdown” can be a great thing if agreed to by our military experts and I would support it wholehardily. It’s probably already in the works. But for the St. Pete Times to mark Promise No. 125, ‘direct military leaders to end the war in Iraq’, as a kept promise is more than a bit premature-at least for me.
    So I looked into who’s keeping score. The St Pete Times is a very liberal paper and here is what Media Matters, a liberal watchdog group says about the paper:

    “So what do the numbers tell us? The liberal media myth certainly doesn’t hold up much in Florida. With the exception of the independently owned St. Pete Times and a handful of larger or more liberal areas, the newspapers in Florida don’t have much of a liberal bent.”

    And this:


    To finish my original point about knowing the author–as in golf, I’ll keep my own score on Obama.

  16. Nah. I still like it. It’s better than nothing. How else would I have known Obama made 510 campaign promises?

    Ending the war is going to be open for interpretation well past announcement Obama will make someday for taking the credit. I don’t need to split hairs on this one.

  17. Randy in Richmond says:

    How are you safer? If you are safer then so am I. But I want to know how. Thank you.

  18. Tinkerbell says:

    I agree with Randy that absent a plan for assessment of the progress, accountability is a nebulous concept.

    I agree with Cindy that transparency at least affords the opportinity to examine and compare their idea of “done” with our perception of degree of walking the talk.

    I agree with steveegg because I also spent some time reading these. For several I clicked the “>>more” tab to find the source material unavailable. [example#34PAYGO] Possibly the Obameter could come under attack for lack of verifiable resources and be edited or disbanded? It might be nice to have a list.

    I think we are all agreeing we want to be accurate scorekeepers. But I wonder how Dave Reid thinks one might actually hold Obama accountable (please don’t say hold his feet to the fire or next thing you know, some overzealous security agent may think you are a threat).

    On the surface #234 sounds promising: Allow 5 days of public comment before signing bills. But it does not make clear what will be done with this public comment. Does this mean the public input will be taken into account, influencing decisions? Or does this mean those who dare to comment will have their information recorded in a data base and be treated as enemies of the government?

    I appreciate having the Obameter even though I think it may take a whole term to really delve into it and understand it.

  19. I think we have like 4 discussions going on at once. I’m with Kathryn on this one (surprise, surprise).

    Here’s one, “Do unto others.” Or as Ghandi used to say, “I like your Christ, but I do not like your Christians.”

    Being baffled that someone wants to give prisoners rights is a disservice to the story of Christ.

    And if the detainees are guilty of a crime? Justice will prevail. That’s the American way.

  20. @Tink “Or does this mean those who dare to comment will have their information recorded in a data base and be treated as enemies of the government?”

    You mean, like, illegally wiretapped?

  21. Randy in Richmond says:

    Who said prisoners don’t get rights? I said alien enemy combatants don’t have the same rights as an American citizen and thus no right to the American court system.

  22. Tinkerbell says:

    @Lorax: 4 conversations at once? Like “The View”!

  23. Except everyone is a little more Elisabeth Hasselbeck and a little less Barbra Walters.

    Can I be Joy?

  24. Tinkerbell says:

    Yes, Lorax, you are a Joy!
    Would Kathryn be Barbara?
    I thought perhaps I might be Whoopi?

  25. No, you’re Elisabeth.

  26. Randy in Richmond says:

    Can I make whoopi with Elisabeth? Sorry, I digress.

  27. Tinkerbell says:

    Randy, no. Your higher level thinking is extraordinary. But this does not bring out the best in people. Or even me.

    Amongst our 4 or so conversations we had going here at once, I wonder if they underscored a need to bring forth candidates at every level, fill a pipeline, have a succession plan in place. Cindy has mentioned this before. Unfortunately we tend to give people more than the Joe-The-Plumber routine as a hazing ritual. Then we put ’em through the Cuisinart. I wonder if are doing ourselves a great disservice? Opening the door for others with take over and lead us anywhere? Cindy, maybe I coud join your bookclub… maybe bookclub could become code for a secret grassroots meeting?

  28. Randy in Richmond says:

    Well, I’m curious. What was promise No. 13?

  29. Require taxpayers to report more detail on capital gains taxes

    Require taxpayers to report the initial value of the investment, called the basis, on which they pay capital gains tax. This measure is expected deter underreporting of capital gains and increase tax revenues.

    Even before he took office

    Updated: Tuesday, January 13th, 2009 | By Angie Drobnic Holan

    Congress actually passed this before Obama was elected.

    The measure, which will take effect in 2011, is intended to stop underreporting of capital gains taxes. It was passed with the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, which the Senate passed on Oct. 1, 2008. The House passedit on Oct. 3, and President Bush signed it into law the same day.

    Even though it happened before he took office, we’re going to give him credit for it. He promised it, and it is now the law of the land. Promise kept.

    (Good grief that took me a long time to find!)

    For a little while you can see the scrubbed page here.

  30. Randy in Richmond says:

    Like I said before, with liberals it’s the intentions that matter, not the results. This is another example of that axiom in action. Whose signature is on the bill? If McCain had won would he have gotten the credit for the bill?

  31. Randy, I think you are right when you say it’s the intentions that matter with liberals. It tends to be the same way with Republicans and anybody else you can form into a group. In for a penny, in for a pound.

  32. The Lorax says:

    Randy, Republicans intend for smaller government and balanced budgets, but we sure didn’t get that did we?

  33. Randy in Richmond says:

    No we didn’t and therefore they have not been voted back in office either, or put another way rewarded for their intentions. Although compared to what’s coming down the pike now, in a relative sense, there was less government. It started changing in 2006 when the Dems took over Congress. However, I don’t necessarily think a President of one party and a Congress of another is a bad thing. And I don’t automatically associate Republicans as conservatives. I agree the Repubs did a poor job with their fiscal responsibilities and we conservatives give them no quarter for their intentions. But the liberal St. Pete. Times does give Obama credit because he intended to enact Rule 13 in the Obameter. Just as it gives him credit for ” directing the military leaders to end the war” when in reality he did no such thing.

    In my life choices, as with my political view, I don’t receive credit for intentions. If that was the case I would have played in the major leagues and I would be able to dance, among many other things. Neither happened in my life. And as an owner of a business if I rewarded intentions my business would have failed. Tim Geithner didn’t intend to cheat on his taxes for four years, Eric Holder didn’t intend to pardon a fugitive with a warrant, and Charlie Rangel didn’t intend to lie about income from his properties for decades, so they therefore get a pass. I do believe Sen. Stevens misused his position and thankfully he was voted out of office.There’s nothing wrong with intentions, but is is wrong to reward them regardless of the outcome. My statement is a generality but I stand by it.

  34. The Lorax says:

    Ok, you said what I had hoped you would say (not what I expected).

  35. I’m sure you mean well.

  36. Randy in Richmond says:

    I’m still waiting for you to tell me how you feel safer.