Historians have already reached an agreement on where Donald Trump
ranks among US presidents, and it is not near the bottom.
It's not quite there yet, but it's getting there.
The C-SPAN poll of historians ranked Trump 41st out of 44, trailing only three 19th-century presidents: Franklin Pierce (1853-57), Andrew Johnson (1865-69), and James Buchanan (1857-61). Trump even trailed William Henry Harrison, who died of pneumonia just 32 days into his presidency.
C-SPAN previously conducted the survey in 2000, 2009, and 2017, with Abraham Lincoln finishing first in all three. George Washington
finished second and Franklin D. Roosevelt
third in each of the last three surveys, except in 2000, when Roosevelt finished second and Washington third, and Theodore Roosevelt finished fourth in each.
According to C-SPAN, 142 historians and “professional observers of the presidency” took part in the survey, a 50 percent increase from 2017.
Rather than simply ranking each president, historians were asked to rate each one on ten different leadership characteristics, with the results used to calculate a score for each.
finished eighth among all presidents in the last half-century, with Barack Obama
in ninth, Bill Clinton
in 19th, George H.W. Bush
in 21st, Jimmy Carter
in 26th, Gerald Ford in 28th, George W. Bush in 29th, and Richard M. Nixon in 31st.
“This year, people
compared which is worse: Watergate or the Trump impeachment
?” presidential historian Douglas Brinkley of Rice University
said in a news
release. “The word ‘impeachment’ probably cost Nixon a few spots lower this year, and maybe Clinton as well.”
Ulysses S. Grant, who debuted at #33 in the 2000 poll, has moved up to 20th place.
Brinkley was quoted as saying, “Grant is having his Hamilton
The complete list of rankings can be found right here.