Looking at all the U.S. presidents since World War II, a survey by Harris Interactive revealed that one-quarter of Americans (25 percent) said Ronald Reagan is the best president, one in five (19 percent) said Franklin Roosevelt while 15 percent believed it is John Kennedy and 12 percent said Bill Clinton. The nine other presidents, including Barack Obama, were at 4 percent or less.
The online survey, conducted among 2,016 adults from Jan. 16 and Jan. 23, also offered a look at the flip side. The results showed that over one-quarter of U.S. adults (27 percent) said that George W. Bush was the worst president while just under one-quarter (22 percent) said Barack Obama is the worst. One in 10 (12 percent) voted against Richard Nixon while the ten other presidents were at 5 percent or less.
Although Reagan turned out to be the best U.S. president since World War II, he was not voted as the best in history.
If the list of presidents is expanded to include some of the founding fathers, such as Washington, Jefferson and Adams, as well as other presidents including Lincoln, Wilson and Jackson, the results of who is best change slightly, the survey report said.
After expanding the list, Abraham Lincoln was seen as the best president in history with one-third of Americans (32 percent) voting in his favor. Lincoln was followed by Ronald Reagan (26 percent), George Washington (21 percent), John Kennedy (21 percent) and Bill Clinton (19 percent).
History has shown us that a president is best judged years after he has left office. Decisions made while sitting in the Oval Office may be seen as the wrong decision by many Americans at that point in time, but as time passes, the wisdom of some of these hard choices becomes clear. And, the reverse is also true, the New York-based research firm said in a statement.
America’s Best President Since World War II. Harris Interactive
America’s Worst President Since World War II. Harris Interactive