How GOP Women Grade Trump's First 100 Days In Office Might Surprise You

As President Trump hits the the 100-day mark, many polls and pundits are giving the commander-in-chief marks of their own.
His report card from young Americans isn’t destined for the fridge: 41% of 18 to 29 year olds would give him an F so far. That’s according to a new national poll from the Harvard Kennedy School's Institute of Politics. Just 10% of those surveyed gave Trump an A.
Throughout the campaign season last year, Refinery29 talked to young Republican women from across the country about their party’s nominee and the political issues they cared about most. (Their views at the time were far from unanimous.) Six-plus months later, and with Day 100 around the corner, we checked back in to find out how they feel now and what they want to see next from the White House.
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PHOTOGRAPHED BY NATHANIEL WELCH.
Katie Frost isn't thrilled with Trump's first 100 days in office.
The #NeverHillary Republican Who Wants Trump Off Twitter
Name: Katie Frost
Age: 24
Home State: Georgia
How would you grade Trump's first 100 days?
“ B-. Signing executive orders that were in line with his campaign promises, and confirming [Supreme Court] Justice Gorsuch added points. I deducted points for unforced errors, and having to pull the healthcare bill for lack of support.”
You told us at the convention that while you weren't for Trump, you were #NeverHillary. Who did you end up voting for in November?
“Like 55% of Republicans, I supported someone else in the primary. But once we had a nominee, I joined my fellow Republicans on Election Day to defeat Hillary Clinton and elect Donald Trump.”
Have your views of Trump changed since the election?
“Not really. I still think he is a strong, yet unpredictable, leader.”
What surprised you most during the first 100 days?
“That the White House staff hasn't changed the password on his personal Twitter account.”
Fill in the blank: I am _____ about the future at this time.
“Cautiously optimistic.”
PHOTOGRAPHED BY NATHANIEL WELCH
Leah Le'Vell went from the campaign trail to 1600 Pennyslvania.
The Campus Campaign Surrogate Who Got A Job In The White House
Name: Leah Le’Vell
Age: 22
Home State: Virginia
How would you grade Trump's first 100 days?
“A! The president has taken more action to get rid of overreach in the federal government than any other president in history. Beyond that, he’s the first president since the 1800s to have a Supreme Court nominee confirmed in his first 100 days.”
Is there anything that disappointed you?
“The president receives far more negative criticism and not nearly as much credit as he deserves. There are constantly negative news stories that dominate air coverage and refuse to talk about where the American people are supportive of him: on issues such as terrorism, leadership, and the economy.”
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What's the most important political issue for you right now?
“The president’s Buy American Hire American initiative. Getting our economy on the right track, so we can have more and better paying jobs for my peers is one of my top priorities. One of the main reasons why I campaigned for Donald Trump was his vision for bringing jobs back to America.”
You now work in the White House communications office. Tell us what that's like.
“It is a true blessing and honour of a lifetime to have the opportunity to be a millennial serving in the White House. Every day, I walk into the gates with such pride knowing this is an experience that I never imagined could happen to me. The people you see on TV or in the news are my colleagues, and we work so hard seven days a week, 24 hours a day to help our country. Each day is nothing like the day before. Even the movies and pictures don’t do the experience of working here justice. It’s truly amazing!”
Fill in the blank: I am _____ about the future at this time.
"Enthusiastic!"
Photo: Courtesy of REBEKAH JOHANSEN BYDLAK.
Rebekah Johansen Bydlak ran for Congress as a fiscal conservative — and now she wants to see Trump embrace those issues more.
The Former Congressional Candidate Who Wants More Focus On Fiscal Issues
Name: Rebekah Bydlak
Age: 26
Home state: Florida
How would you grade Trump's first 100 days?
“ Incomplete. Until this week, there's been little movement from Congress on any substantive bills — they passed only two bills that the Congressional Budget Office even scored. Especially for fiscal conservatives, it's too early to tell how this administration will do on our issues. One-hundred days is a very short time in Washington, D.C. We'll have a much better idea in the near future.”
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What have you been most excited about?
“I've been honestly thrilled by several cabinet picks. People like Rep. Mick Mulvaney and Rep. Tom Price are terrific leaders, and it's great to see them in the administration.”
What disappointed you?
“Lack of movement on small-government priorities like repealing the [Affordable Care Act] is very frustrating for those of us who, quite frankly, still struggle to deal with healthcare costs and were hoping for relief. It looks like things are moving in the right direction now, but there's so much to be done.”
What do you want to see the administration do differently?
“There's been little focus on fiscal issues so far, and continuing in that direction would be a mistake that could hold back other policy priorities. There's all this talk of how to 'pay for' tax reform, but right now, the option of cutting wasteful spending is rarely even mentioned. That needs to change.”
Fill in the blank: I am ______ about the future at this time.
"Cautiously optimistic."
The #NeverTrump Conservative Who’s Just Happy The World Hasn’t Exploded — Yet
Name: Katrina Jørgensen
Age: 31
Home State: South Carolina
How would you grade Trump's first 100 days?
“Ugh. I guess a D, because the world hasn’t exploded yet. I’m not happy with almost anything he’s done.”
Is there anything he’s done that does make you happy?
“I’m pleased with some of his picks for certain positions, picks that any smart conservative would have done. At least he didn’t throw that advice out the window. We haven’t, as some people thought, ended up in a World War.”
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What’s surprised you most?
"That he followed through more than I thought he would [on campaign promises]. Unfortunately, a lot of his follow-through has been on things I wish he wasn’t following through on, like the refugee ban and cracking down on immigration. And just his choice of rhetoric within the White House — any hope that he was going to change his style and be more presidential definitely didn’t materialize.”
You resigned from your role in the Young Republicans National Federation as a stand against Trump’s candidacy. How do you see yourself within the larger context of the Republican Party today?
“I don’t see myself in the Republican Party anyone. None of my beliefs have changed. I’m still strongly fiscally conservative and more socially moderate. However, the response from the party, and the party’s continued support of a candidate like this, shows me that what I perceived the party to be and what the party is in reality is two very different things.”
Who did you end up voting for in November?
“I voted third-party, for Evan McMullin.”
So seeing how things have gone, would you rather have Hillary Clinton in the White House than Donald Trump right now, if you had to pick between just those two?
"Well, he didn’t get my vote."
But she didn’t either.
“Right, and I really can’t see myself as a Democrat or even honestly as an Independent. I’m a conservative and always have been. But do I think she might have done a better job on some policies? Maybe foreign policy. But on social policy, I don’t like what Trump’s doing, but I don’t think she would have done much better.”
Fill in the blank: I am _____ about the future at this time.
"Very concerned."
Interviews have been edited and condensed for length and clarity.
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