Donald Trump's first 6 months

Photos via Gage Skidmore/Flickr (CC-BY-SA)

Trump’s first 6 months: The 189 moments you need to remember

Here are the highs, lows, and gaffes from Trump's first 181 days in office.


Andrew Couts


Andrew Wyrich


Posted on Jul 20, 2017   Updated on May 22, 2021, 11:19 pm CDT

Has it really only been six months?

The first stretch of President Donald Trump‘s presidency has been an exhausting roller coaster of controversies, gaffes, missteps, and scandals. Indeed, it may be difficult to remember every twist of the past week, let alone those of the past 181 days. But oh, what a trip it’s been, this democracy of ours.

Below, we’ve attempted to catalog all the most notable moments—some serious, some ridiculous, some silly, some downright strange—that have occurred during Trump’s first six months in the White House. As you skim through the whirlwind of memories, remember: This carnival has only just begun.


1. Against all odds, Trump becomes president of the United States.

2. White House removes the climate change page from its website.

3. Trump deletes all previous ‘We the People’ petitions.

4. For the entirety of the Trump administration’s first-ever press briefing, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer lies about the size of Trump’s inauguration crowd.

5. Trump repeats his false claim of widespread voter fraud in his first meeting with Congress.

6. Photos reveal that Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway punched a man in the face at an inauguration party.

7. White House uses debunked 2012 study to justify Trump’s errant belief that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election.

8. Conway says on live television that the Trump administration operates on “alternative facts.” Sales of 1984 soar.

9. Trump’s nominee for budget director, Mick Mulvaney, is forced to admit to members of Congress that former President Barack Obama’s 2009 inauguration crowd was bigger.

10. Trump orders the Environmental Protection Agency to delete climate change information from its website.

11. Trump promises a “major investigation” into the non-existent problem of widespread voter fraud.

12. Spicer tweets his password.

13. Trump proposes a 20 percent tax on imports from Mexico to pay for his border wall.

14. Reports reveal that Trump personally called the National Parks Service to complain about it tweeting photos showing the size of his inauguration crowd.

15. Trump bans all travelers from seven Muslim-majority nations, sparking chaos. (A federal court would block the ban a day later.)

16. Trump appoints adviser and former Breitbart executive Steve Bannon to the National Security Council.

17. Trump blames an airline system malfunction and liberals for the disastrous rollout of his travel ban.

18. Trump fires Actin Attorney General Sally Yates after she refuses to defend his travel ban.

19. Some 900 State Department officials resign over Trump’s travel ban.

20. Trump picks conservative judge Neil Gorsuch as his Supreme Court nominee.


21. Trump threatens to defund the University of California, Berkeley following violent protests between alt-right and anti-fascist protesters on the school’s campus.

22. Trump puts Iran “on notice,” via Twitter, after the country tests a ballistic missile.

23. Trump starts a fight with Australia, of all places, over refugees.

24. Conway makes up a fake “Bowling Green massacre” to justify Trump’s travel ban.

25. Another federal judge shuts down Trump’s travel ban.

26. Trump says polls that show negative sentiment against him are “fake.”

27. Trump ramps up his war on the media after calling the New York Times “total fiction” and “fake news,” a term he co-opted in January.

28. White House releases a typo-ridden list of “78 terrorist attacks” it says the media failed to report.

29. Vice President Mike Pence casts the tie-breaking vote to confirm Betsy DeVos as the education secretary.

30. Spicer cites an imaginary terrorist attack to justify Trump’s travel ban.

31. Conway plugs Ivanka Trump’s clothing line on Fox News. (She was later hit with a formal ethics complaint about the de facto advertisement.)

32. Then-National Security Adviser Michael Flynn is accused of violating federal law for discussing sanctions with Russia’s ambassador during Trump’s transition.

33. Trump pretends to understand Japanese.

34. Trump gets into a Twitter fight with Mark Cuban.

35. Trump administration promotes official inauguration poster (with a typo).

36. Trump receives a briefing on a North Korean missile launch while surrounded by guests at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, sparking national security concerns.

37. Flynn resigns as national security adviser after reports reveal he lied about his chats with Russia’s ambassador to Pence.

38. Reports reveal Trump knew about Flynn’s contact with Russia’s ambassador for weeks before forcing him to resign.

39. Conway tweets, “I love you back,” to a white supremacist account; she later deletes tweet.

40. Members of Congress call for an investigation into Trump’s ties to Russia in light of Flynn’s resignation.

41. Trump announces his first 2020 re-election campaign rally.

42. U.S. intelligence agents reportedly express distrust of the White House’s handling of classified information.

43. Trump goes all out in his first press conference as president.

44. Trump administration scraps first travel ban executive order.

45. White House document shows officials considered using National Guard troops to round up undocumented immigrants.

46. Trump accuses the mainstream media of being the “enemy of the people.”

47. Trump makes up a terrorist attack in Sweden at his first 2020 campaign rally.

48. White House orders all federal law enforcement agencies to detain and deport all undocumented immigrants.

49. Trump attacks anonymous sources leaking information to the media.

50. Trump condemns “leakers” after reports that he asked top U.S. intelligence officials to refute claims that he or his campaign had ties to Russia.

51. White House relaunches a war on weed.

52. White House bans the New York Times, BBC, CNN, Los Angeles Times, BuzzFeed News, and Politico from a press briefing.

53. Pence shows support for Israel by tweeting the flag of… Nicaragua.

54. Trump says he will skip the annual White House Correspondents Dinner.

55. Spicer surprises staff with a search of their phones to catch leakers, a fact that is immediately leaked.

56. Trump’s love of ketchup on steak revealed, ridiculed.

57. Trump blames Obama for leaks to the press.

58. Trump orders a raid in Yemen that results in the death of a U.S. Navy SEAL, 29-year-old Chief Petty Officer William Owens. The raid resulted in no actionable intelligence.

59. Justice Department announces it will “pull back” on investigating police wrongdoing.

60. Trump holds his first address to a joint session of Congress, is widely praised as appearing “presidential.”


61. Reports reveal Attorney General Jeff Sessions failed to mention multiple meetings with Russia’s ambassador during his Senate confirmation hearing.

62. Spicer accidentally announces Trump as the new secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

63. Sessions recuses himself from all investigations related to Russia’s efforts to influence the 2016 election.

64. Reports reveal that three additional Trump campaign advisers—J.D. Gordon, Carter Page, and Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner—met with Russia’s ambassador during the campaign.

65. Trump misspells the word “hereby” twice in now-deleted tweets calling for investigations into Democratic leadership.

66. In a Twitter rant, Trump accuses Obama of wiretapping his phones at Trump Tower. To date, there is no evidence this is true.

67. Trump gets in a Twitter fight with Arnold Schwarzenegger over Celebrity Apprentice.

68. Trump calls on Congress to investigate his unfounded claim that Obama wiretapped him.

69. Trump rejects then-FBI Director James Comey’s assertion that Obama did not, in fact, wiretap him.

70. Trump signs a new travel ban, this one on six Muslim-majority countries. (Iraq was removed from the list.)

71. Trump falsely accuses Obama of releasing 122 former Guantanamo detainees who returned to terrorism. (Former President George W. Bush released 113 of them.)

72. HUD Secretary Ben Carson implies that slaves in the U.S. were immigrants.

73. Trump roundly mocked for touting his “tremendous respect for women” on International Women’s Day.

74. Report reveals Trump met Russia’s ambassador despite denying he did.

75. Congress tells Trump to stop deleting tweets.

76. White House releases bizarre press release about women entrepreneurs.

77. Trump fires Preet Bharara, a U.S. attorney known for fighting corruption.

78. Conway claims that microwaves can be used to film people in an attempt to justify Trump’s unfounded wiretap claims against Obama.

79. Trump gets in a Twitter fight with Snoop Dogg over a music video depicting the president’s assassination.

80. Sessions falsely claims heroin is just “slightly” more dangerous than marijuana.

81. A federal judge in Hawaii blocks Trump’s second travel ban.

82. The Senate Intelligence Committee says there’s no evidence Obama wiretapped Trump Tower.

83. Records obtained by the House Oversight Committee show Flynn failed to disclose $56,000 in payments from Russian companies.

84. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says a U.S. military strike against North Korea is “on the table.”

85. While meeting with Ireland’s prime minister, Trump reads aloud an Irish proverb that is actually Nigerian.

86. Trump says stories about his possible collusion with Russia are “fake news.”

87. Former FBI Director James Comey confirms a federal investigation into the Trump team’s potential ties to Russia.

88. Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Intelligence Committee—which is investigating Russia’s election meddling—claims the U.S. intelligence community collected “incidental” intelligence on Trump’s transition team based on documents given to him by an unnamed “source.”

89. Trump lies during interview with Time magazine for an article about how much he lies.

90. House Republicans’ first attempt to pass legislation to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act dies.

91. Trump has a blast sitting in a large truck.

92. Rep. Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, accuses the White House of pushing Nunes to cancel the committee’s hearing on Russia.

93. The House’s second move to pass an Obamacare replacement fails.

94. Kushner, a White House adviser, calls American citizens “customers” of the federal government.

95. Sessions announces plan to withhold federal funding from “sanctuary cities” that refuse to enforce federal immigration law.

96. Trump says he will “fight” Republicans who refuse to support his agenda.

97. Reports reveal Nunes source for the intelligence documents was actually the White House.

98. Flynn asks for immunity in exchange for testifying.


99. Trump starts beef with NBC’s Chuck Todd over his reporting on Russia.

100. Trump donates the first three months of his presidential salary to the National Parks Service.

101. Trump signs bill killing FCC privacy protections for internet users.

102. Bannon gets kicked out of the National Security Council.

103. Trump blames Obama’s foreign policy for a deadly chemical weapons attack Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad launched on his own people, including children.

104. Trump accuses Obama administration National Security Adviser Susan Rice of breaking the law by unmasking the names of Americans included in incidental intelligence collection. There is still no evidence Rice committed any crime.

105. Nunes steps down from the House Intelligence Committee’s probe into Russia amid an ethics investigation for his conspiring with the White House.

106. Senate Republicans eliminate the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees—the so-called “nuclear option,” a drastic move that some say changes the nature of the upper chamber.

107. Trump launches a missile strike on a Syrian airfield, angering his own supporters, igniting tensions with pro-Assad Russia, and polarizing the international community.

108. Reports reveal Kushner failed to include his meetings with foreign leaders, including Russia’s ambassador, on his security clearance form. His attorneys would later add some 100 names to his list of foreign government officials with whom he had contact.

109. Eric Trump, the president’s son, says his sister Ivanka’s “heartbroken and outraged” reaction to Assad’s chemical weapons strike inspired Trump to launch a missile attack on the country.

110. North Korea threatens to nuke the United States.

111. The Government Accountability Office launches an investigation into the funding of Trump’s White House transition.

112. Spicer attempts to justify Trump’s missile strike on Syria by claiming that Adolf Hitler “didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons” during World War II—failing to mention the horrors of the Holocaust.

113. Trump says in an interview that he was enjoying “the most beautiful piece of chocolate cake” with China’s president as he bombed Syria.

114. Reports reveal the FBI obtained a warrant to monitor former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page on the grounds that he was acting as an agent of a foreign power.

115. Trump falsely claims he only recently met Bannon, whom he has known since at least 2011.

116. U.S. drops the “mother of all bombs” on an ISIS target in Afghanistan.

117. Trump signs legislation that allows states to defund Planned Parenthood.

118. White House announces it will keep visitor logs secret.

119. Following widespread protests, Trump doesn’t understand why people still want to see his tax returns.

120. White House misspells “Secretary of Education” on Snapchat.

121. Trump, speaking with Fox & Friends, seems to forget who the leader of North Korea is.

122. Trump congratulates Turkey’s president for winning an election the State Department says may not be legitimate.

123. The White House appears to have accidentally claimed that an “armada” of U.S. Navy ships was heading into the waters off North Korea. It was actually off the coast of Indonesia.

124. Spicer struggles to name a single legislative victory during Trump’s first 100 days in office.

125. South Korea condemns Trump’s “shocking ignorance” after he repeats the false claim that “Korea actually used to be a part of China”—a fake detail he may have been told by China’s president.

126. Trump invites Sarah Palin, Ted Nugent, and Kid Rock to the White House. The trio later trolled Hillary Clinton with a mocking photo next to her portrait.

127. Sessions implies Hawaii isn’t a legitimate state in the union after a federal judge from Hawaii knocked down Trump’s second travel ban.

128. Despite his own embrace of a president’s first substantial period in office, Trump claims the 100-day benchmark is “ridiculous.”

129. With zero sarcasm, Trump’s attorneys claim protesters “have no right” to demonstrate at political rallies because doing so infringes on the candidate’s—in this case, Trump’s— First Amendment rights.

130. Trump tweets an odd video celebrating imprisoned Egyptian-American Aya Hijazi’s return to the U.S.

131. Trump’s remarks remembering the Holocaust are suspiciously similar to those on the Holocaust Museum’s “Introduction to the Holocaust” webpage.

132. Trump sparks an uproar after signing an executive order to review the status of some 30 national monuments, which are comprised of millions of acres of protected land.

133. Trump claims he thought being president “would be easier.”

134. Five months after his election, Trump hands out 2016 electoral map to reporters.


135. Trump hires a family planning official to the Department of Health and Human Services who is anti-abortion, anti-contraception, and anti-family planning.

136. Churches can now engage in political activism after Trump signs a “religious freedom” executive order.

137. Even the FDA isn’t safe from Trump’s preference of cable news network.

138. Former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates testifies that Michael Flynn was susceptible to “blackmail” by the Russian government.

139. Shocking nearly everyone, Trump fires FBI Director James Comey—a decision that would send American politics into a seemingly never-ending maelstrom.

140. In the midst of a Comey-related Twitter tirade, Trump retweets a CNN story despite repeatedly calling the network“fake news.”

141. Amid the growing frenzy over Trump firing Comey, the president meets with Russian officials in the Oval Office and bars any United States media members from attending.

142. Trump claims he invented the phrase “priming the pump,” seemingly unaware that the phrase has been used for decades.

143. Trump calls Comey a “showboat” during an interview with NBC News while also admitting that he fired him in part due to the FBI’s investigation into Russia.

144. As the Comey controversy continued to envelop Washington, Trump threatens Comey on Twitter by suggesting he has “tapes” of the two of them speaking.

145. The Washington Post reports that Trump shared sensitive information with Russian officials when they came to the Oval Office the week before. Trump then confirmed the report on Twitter.

146. Memos written by Comey suggest that Trump asked him to end the FBI’s investigation into Flynn, spurring calls that Trump obstructed justice.

147. Reports reveal Trump allegedly told Comey that he should consider jailing reporters.

148. Rep. Al Green (D-T.X.) calls for Congress to impeach Trump, the first lawmaker to do so on the House floor.

149. A special counsel is named to head the investigation into whether Russia worked with the Trump campaign and if the country meddled in the 2016 election. Former FBI Director Robert Muller is tapped to lead the investigation.

150. Before embarking on his first trip abroad, Trump’s team reportedly demands that steak and ketchup (Trump’s favorite meal) be served in Saudi Arabia.

151. The New York Times reports that Trump called Comey a “nut job” during his meeting with Russian officials in the Oval Office and told them that firing him relieved “great pressure” off of him.

152. A picture of Trump touching a glowing orb in Saudi Arabia spawns a million memes.

153. Trump inadvertently leaks the name of the country that gave the United States information that he subsequently told to the Russians: Israel.

154. Trump praises the brutal actions (such as government-sanctioned attacks on suspects) taken by the Phillippines to tackle its drug problem, telling the country’s president that he is doing an “unbelievable job.”  

155. French President Emmanuel Macron destroys Trump at his own masculinity-testing handshake thing he does all the time.

156. Reports surface Kushner allegedly attempted to set up a back-channel with Russia.

157. Officials claim Trump reportedly prefers pictures in his daily intelligence briefing.

158. Comedian Kathy Griffin poses in a photoshoot with Trump’s severed head. It sparks a tremendous firestorm online.

159. Trump loves bragging about the size of his online audience. The Daily Dot finds that many of  his followers are actually fake.

160. Covfefe.

161. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer makes Covfefe-gate worse by implying that some people knew what Trump meant when he typed the nonsensical series of letters.

162. Trump announces that the United States will exit the landmark Paris Climate Accord, an international agreement that excludes just three countries—now including the U.S.


163. The Intercept reports that Russian military intelligence executed a cyberattack on voting software in the United States days before the presidential election.

164. During a must-watch testimony before Congress, Comey says he orchestrated a leak of his memos to the New York Times and also uttered the now-famous line, “Lordy, I hope there are tapes,” in reference to Trump’s earlier threat.

165. Trump surprisingly refrains from tweeting about Comey’s testimony on the day of it occurs. He returns with a fury the following day, saying he felt “total and complete vindication” and accused Comey of committing perjury.

166. Dan Scavino Jr., the White House director of social media, is found to be in violation of federal law for tweeting about an election in Michigan while a member of the government. He receives a warning.

167. Covfefe returns—this time in the form of legislation.

168. Reports surface that Special Prosecutor Robert Muller is investigating whether Trump obstructed justice.

169. Trump appoints a family planner with no experience in housing to oversee federal housing programs in New York and New Jersey.

170. In a somewhat tone-deaf move, Trump says he doesn’t think poor people should serve in his cabinet.

171. Trump draws thunderous cheers from people in Iowa for saying he is going to enact an immigration law that has already been on the books for 20 years.

172. Trump admits he was lying about having recordings of his conversations with Comey.

173. While on a golf course, Trump commits an ultimate sin.

174. Amid allegations that Trump obstructed justice by firing Comey, he pivots by saying Obama “colluded or obstructed” during the 2016 election.

175. The Washington Post discovers that Trump has a fake Photoshopped cover of Time magazine with him on it framed in several of his golf resorts.

176. The Supreme Court rules on Trump’s travel ban, allowing parts of it to proceed. However, it said that anyone with “close” family ties must be allowed to enter the country, which the Trump administration believes doesn’t include grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, or fiancées.

177. Trump starts what would become a days-long saga when he tweets sexist and vulgar things about the hosts of MSNBC’s Morning Joe. In the tweets, Trump says co-host Mika Brzezinski was “bleeding badly from a facelift” during a meeting around New Year’s Eve. This is proven to be false.

178. Despite calls to stop tweeting about the hosts, Trump continues his Twitter tirade over the next few days.


179. Reports indicate that the Trump administration is considering shutting down the White House Council on Women and Girls, which tries to “ensure that federal programs and policies address and take into account the distinctive concerns of women and girls, including women of color and those with disabilities.”

180. Trump can’t stop tweeting about Morning Joe.

181. Twitter continues to land Trump in hot water. This time, he tweets out a GIF of him body slamming someone with CNN’s logo on their face during a WWE segment he was featured in.

182. Someone in Trump’s administration forgot to book him a hotel room for the G20 Summit.

183. During a highly anticipated meeting between Trump and Putin, Trump apparently agreed to form a joint working group between the two countries to fight cybersecurity issues—despite the U.S. intelligence community concluding that Russia was using cyber tactics to influence the 2016 election.

184. Trump is sued for blocking Americans on Twitter. The lawsuit argues that by doing so, Trump is violating people’s First Amendment rights.

185. The White House releases comments it has received on its much-debated collection of personal information on American voters as part of its “election integrity” commission. In doing so, the White House exposes the personal information of hundreds of people. One of the comments is a link to the infamous shock-site photo “goatse.”

186. Trump says he wants his border wall to be transparent because of flying bags of drugs.

187. Donald Trump Jr. confirms that he was involved in a meeting between Trump campaign officials and a Russian lawyer by posting the email chain setting up the meeting on Twitter. The British publicist who arranged the meeting promised damaging information on Hillary Clinton. The meeting is the first proof that Trump’s campaign was at least willing to have help from Russia in the campaign.

188. Trump seems to dismiss the magnitude of the meeting, saying, “That’s politics!

189. Several outlets report that Trump had a second, undisclosed, meeting with Putin at the G20 Summit.

Share this article
*First Published: Jul 20, 2017, 8:15 am CDT