Like anyone who has ever decided to run for president, Donald Trump is a man who makes promises. Some are bold and stunning: he'll build a 50-foot high wall along the United States' southern border -- and he'll get Mexico to pay for it! If he wins the presidency, in his first term, he'll knock out Obamacare, Common Core, the Environmental Protection Agency, and defund Planned Parenthood! He'll even force cookie company Nabisco to make its Oreos in America again!
It's hard to predict whether he will be able to deliver on those pledges after the election. But it might be instructive to look at the promises he's made that are purely operative during the campaign cycle. He has discarded some, deferred others, and kept only parts of others. Here are just a few of them:
He promised to back the Republican party's eventual nominee.
Back when GOP delegate counts still seemed remote and pro forma, Donald Trump signed a loyalty pledge to his party.
The pledge required that candidates, should they lose, would "endorse the 2016 Republican presidential nominee regardless of who it is." That was fairly meaningless. This was the key part -- the vow that if the candidate didn't win the GOP nomination, the loser would just go quietly into the night and "not seek or accept the nomination for president of any other party." It was aimed at stopping Donald Trump from going out and running as an independent, siphoning votes away from the GOP nominee and handing the election to the Democrat.
The signed piece of paper was hardly binding, but Trump swore he wouldn't go back on it, telling CBS News in September that "I see no circumstances under which I would tear up that pledge."
Yet months later, as the front-runner finds himself in an increasingly fraught race for the requisite 1,237 delegates for the GOP nomination, Trump seems ready to abandon his pledge.
In February, he complained on CBS' "Face the Nation" that the GOP was "not treating me right."
"You look at the way they stake the audiences in the debates," he said to host John Dickerson. "I signed a pledge and I will, you know, abide by the pledge unless [the GOP] default, but as far as I'm concerned they're defaulting."
Now, Trump appears to be waging an all-out war, accusing the RNC of a "rigged" election process. But on the key part of the pledge about not mounting a third-party bid: Trump has not implied he's about to go and run outside the party. Then again, he might just blow up the party if he doesn't win, a prospect not lost on the GOP poobahs who may be thinking wishfully, is there any way to get Trump to make a graceful exit from the race?
He pledged to pay legal fees for violent protesters.
As the GOP front-runner's rallies have at times become hotspots for violence and protests, Trump has pledged to look out for his supporters if they get in trouble.
At an Iowa rally in February, Trump warned: "There may be somebody with tomatoes in the audience."
"If you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of them, would you?" he told his supporters. "Seriously, okay? Just knock the hell -- I promise you -- I will pay for the legal fees."
Last month, a North Carolina man clocked a Trump rally protester in the face and was subsequently charged by police with assault and disorderly conduct.
Trump seemed willing, at first, to take some of the heat for his supporter-turned-sucker-puncher.
When he was asked on CBS' Face the Nation last month whether he would consider paying the 78-year-old man's legal fees, Trump said he was looking into the issue.
"I'm going to review it," Trump said. "I don't condone violence and I don't condone what happened to him and what he did because he got carried away and it's very unfortunate...But this kid was walking out, and I understand he had a certain finger up in the air as he's walking out, and this man became very angry."
On NBC's "Meet the Press," he confirmed that he had "actually instructed my people to look into it, yes."
But later that week, he seemed to have forgotten what he'd said, telling ABC News, "I didn't say that. I haven't looked at it yet. And nobody's asked me to pay for fees... I never said I was going to pay for fees."
He swore to be more "presidential."
In February, after he was repeatedly criticized for using expletives in stump speeches, Trump pledged to purge the profanity.
"I have said I will not do that at all. Because if I say a word that's a little bit off color, a little bit, it becomes a headline," Trump said at a Republican debate in Greenville, South Carolina. "I will not do it again. Not using, by the way, not using profanity is very easy."
It was just one instance of Trump promising a more "presidential" pivot. He's since sworn to Fox News that he would be "changing very rapidly" in time for a general election run against the Democratic candidate. He's repeated that to CBS' Face the Nation, promising that he would be a "much different" person as president.
After winning New York's primary Tuesday, he seemed to be on his way to fulfilling this promise.
Trump's victory speech in Manhattan didn't include rants against the Republican National Committee or his rivals. He even called his opponent by a respectful title: "Senator Cruz," Trump said, instead of his usual "Lyin' Ted."
Some media outlets hailed the new, "more presidential" language as a sign of a maturing Trump campaign. The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza even declared that "Donald Trump 2.0 made his official debut" at Trump Tower that night.
Less than 24 hours later, the old Trump was back.
"In the case of Lyin' Ted Cruz -- Lyin' Ted - he brings the Bible, holds it high, puts it down, lies," Trump crowed.
Thursday evening, he tweeted:
Trump's explanation seems to be that he'll have plenty of time to be presidential, and it'll be a piece of cake. "My wife always says 'be more presidential,'" he told supporters at a rally in Berlin, Maryland. "It's easy to be presidential, you know. Being presidential is much easier than being the way I am. Takes much less energy... You know what they mean by being presidential. Be more low-key. But we can't do that!"
He RSVP-ed to CPAC... and then he bailed.
The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), a veritable Mardi Gras for grassroots right-wingers, was scheduled for March this year, in the midst of the 2016 primary season.
Usually, candidates head out to the Washington gathering to woo their base and impress them with their pro-life commitments and other conservative bona fides.
The New York business mogul, who was scheduled to address the conference on a Saturday morning, pulled out at the last moment. Instead, ahead of Kansas' Republican caucuses, where 40 delegates were up for grabs, Trump chose to make a last-minute stop in the state and hold a rally.
CPAC organizers also tweeted out how "disappointed" they were about Trump's decision to skip out on the event, responding to the slight by saying that "his choice sends a clear message to conservatives."
The last-ditch efforts in Kansas didn't amount to much, though. Cruz, who made an appearance at a Friday CPAC session, won by a landslide, trumping the billionaire 48 percent to 23 percent.
Trump also skipped out on a Republican debate.
Trump's ghosting on CPAC isn't the first time he's left a Republican audience hanging.
In January, ahead of Iowa's kickoff caucuses, Trump agreed to a debate hosted by Fox News, then changed his mind and refused to attend, complaining that network anchor Megyn Kelly was "really biased against" him.
Instead, Trump scheduled another competing event at the last minute: a Des Moines fundraiser which Trump said, would direct all the funds would be distributed among 22 veterans groups.
That fundraising event, according to Trump, raised $6 million, to be given to 22 veterans groups. Now, over two months later, a recent analysis by the Wall Street Journal says that only "roughly $2.4 million has been received by the veterans organizations.
Trump's campaign did not respond to a request for comment regarding the missing money.
Where is that SCOTUS list?
Trump, just a few days after he won big in Florida's GOP primary in March, told a room full of Palm Beach County Republicans in March that he would submit a list of names that he would nominate for the late Antonin Scalia's vacant Supreme Court seat.
"So I'm going to get a list of anywhere from five to ten judges, and those are going to be the judges that I'm going to put in, it will be one of those judges, and I will guarantee it personally, like we do in the world of business, which we don't like to do too often," Trump said. "But I will guarantee it that those are going to be the first judges that I put up for nomination if I win. And that should solve that problem, and I think that's a good idea, right?"
Trump threw out two names during CBS News' Republican debate in February that he would consider -- "We could have a Diane Sykes, or you could have a Bill Pryor, we have some fantastic people," the billionaire said just hours after Scalia's death -- but he has not yet delivered that full list.
He also promised a series of policy speeches
The New York billionaire has promised repeatedly on the campaign trail that he would show off his policy chops with a series of serious speeches. But so far, the only speech that's come close -- coincidentally, the only one where Trump has used a teleprompter -- was Trump's address to AIPAC last month in Washington, D.C., where he expounded on how he would "send a clear signal" to Israel that the country was America's "most reliable ally."
We may be seeing this promise come to fruition in the coming weeks, though, as part of the effort undertaken by his new top manager, Paul Manafort. Trump will be in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday to deliver his foreign policy speech, and he also told the Associated Press that he's planning speeches on immigration policy and on the military.
for more features.