President George W. Bush enters his 100th day in office today, and pundits and politicians are rating his presidential performance.
So far, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle give the president credit for his ability to set an agenda — and stick to it.
"He's understood the key matter, which is, you have the ability to set a vision for the country, an agenda," said Rep. Brad Carson (D-Okla.).
However, Carson believes that Bush will need to start putting more emphasis on other issues, not just his tax cut package.
"We should be dealing with health care. We should be dealing with China. We should be dealing with trade," he said. "We should be dealing with our seniors, the nursing homes, Medicare, social security, and we're not doing anything like that."
Bush in the White House
White House chief of staff Andrew Card, appearing on ABCNEWS' This Week, said Bush has "changed the civility" in Washington, D.C.
"I think the president does understand America's problems," Card said. "Not only that, he can lead America into the right solutions. And this man is a terrific listener. He's a great learner. He does his homework, and he is going to guide Congress to the right solutions."
A Shrinking Violet?
Pundits agree that Bush still has yet to show that he's the "can-do" guy that he promised to be during the campaign.
"He needs to have some signing ceremonies in the Rose Garden and demonstrate to the American people what was the theme of his campaign— that he can get things done," said Marshall Wittman, a political scientist.
Bush says that he doesn't want to hog the spotlight, which is an unusual trait for the world's No. 1 leader. On Saturday, Bush dismissed the milestone of his first 100 days as a "media marker," but said he has brought civility to White House..
While many political experts believe it's still too early to judge the president's performance, some assert that Bush must become more personally involved if he expects results.
"Over the next few months, we're going to see his legislative package go through Congress, and we're also going to see if he starts chalking up successes," Wittman said. "You know, Texans have an old traditions, going back to President Johnson. It's called the treatment, where a president gets right up front in a legislator's face and puts his arm around them, cajoles them and threatens them to do business with the White House.
"That's what President Bush is going to eventually have to do. That's what all presidents have to do," he said.
ABC Radio contributed to this report.