Only four of Morsi’s 64 promises for the first 100 days have been carried out, said Amr Sobhi, a co-creator of the Morsi Meter, a Web site inspired by the U.S.-based Obama Meter site that aims to track the president’s success.
Piles of garbage continue to line some streets of the capital. Strikes over wages and overdue benefits have halted some public-sector services, particularly in Egypt’s woefully underfunded hospitals. One man even filed a police report against Morsi for failing to implement all of his 100-day promises, according to the Egypt Independent, an English-language daily.
But in newspaper headlines and on street corners, Morsi’s administration and its backers in the Muslim Brotherhood have been pushing back. Not only did Morsi do well in his first three months, they argue, but he also did all that could have been expected, given the cards he was dealt.
“I think his performance has been great,” said Rashad Bayoumi, a spokesman for the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party. The president inherited a crippling national debt, Bayoumi said, but he has also made important strides to shift the balance of power away from the military, which held sway even after the toppling of Hosni Mubarak in the uprisings of 2011.
Morsi’s first term marks a major experiment in elected Islamist rule in the Arab world after decades of repression. The stakes are high, particularly in Egypt, where Egyptians are expected to head to the polls in the coming months to approve a new constitution and then elect a parliament.
Omar Ashour, a professor at Exeter University in Britain and an expert on Islamist movements, said the Brotherhood learned a hard lesson at the polls this year and is maneuvering carefully past the 100-day mark.
The group, together with more conservative Salafist parties, pulled off a landslide Islamist victory in the first national election after Mubarak’s fall, he said. But while 70 percent of voters chose Islamist candidates for parliament, only 50 percent were still voting Islamist by the time the presidential election rolled around four months later.
Public opinion took its toll, Ashour said. The seated parliament had almost no authority — but that didn’t matter to the country’s newly empowered voters who wanted fast solutions for a gutted economy and worsening security in the streets.
“The perception was: You guys had your chance and you didn’t do much,” he said. In the end, Morsi beat his runoff competitor, former military man Ahmed Shafik, by only a narrow margin.
Morsi’s 64 campaign promises, which addressed matters of security, fuel, cleanliness, traffic and bread — with no mention of the Brotherhood’s traditional religious rhetoric — were in turn rooted in the group’s growing understanding of an increasingly powerful electorate, analysts and Brotherhood officials said.