February 23, 2011

Presidential polling

By Presidential polling

Author: Daniel Himebaugh

This is a few days old, but still fun.  Last Friday, Gallup released the results of a poll in which pollsters asked a random sample of Americans to name the greatest U.S. president.  Here are the top ten by percentage:

1. Ronald Reagan (19%)

2. Abraham Lincoln (14%)

3. Bill Clinton (13%)

4. John Kennedy (11%)

5. George Washington (10%)

6. Franklin Roosevelt (8%)

7. Barack Obama (5%)

8. Theodore Roosevelt (3%)

9. Harry Truman (3%)

10. George W. Bush (2%)

No other president received more than two percent of the vote, although Thomas Jefferson almost tied George W. Bush for tenth place.  Gallup notes that the "greatest president" question is open-ended, meaning that respondents are asked to name a president off the top of their head.  This format tends to increase the mention of recent presidents.

Readers are free to draw their own conclusions about the meaning (if any) of this poll.  But we are certainly happy to see that many Americans appreciate President Reagan's legacy as much as we do.

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