US Presidential Rankings


A. B. C. D. E. F.
Brookings Institution
Apr. 2, 20151
Siena Research Institute (SRI)
July 1, 20102
C-SPAN
2009 3
The Times
Oct. 28, 2008 4
Wall Street Journal & Federalist Society
Feb.-Mar. 20055
Arthur
Schlesinger, Jr.

1996 6
1 Abraham Lincoln Franklin Roosevelt Abraham Lincoln Abraham Lincoln George Washington Abraham Lincoln
2 George Washington Theodore Roosevelt George Washington George Washington Abraham Lincoln George Washington
3 Franklin Roosevelt Abraham Lincoln Franklin Roosevelt Franklin Roosevelt Franklin Roosevelt Franklin Roosevelt
4 Theodore Roosevelt George Washington Theodore Roosevelt Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson
5 Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson Harry Truman Theodore Roosevelt Theodore Roosevelt Andrew Jackson
6 Harry Truman James Madison John F. Kennedy Dwight Eisenhower Ronald Reagan Theodore Roosevelt
7 Dwight Eisenhower James Monroe Thomas Jefferson Harry Truman Harry Truman Woodrow Wilson
8 Bill Clinton Woodrow Wilson Dwight Eisenhower Ronald Reagan Dwight Eisenhower Harry Truman
9 Andrew Jackson Harry Truman Woodrow Wilson James Polk James Polk James Polk
10 Woodrow Wilson Dwight Eisenhower Ronald Reagan Woodrow Wilson Andrew Jackson Dwight Eisenhower
11 Ronald Reagan John F. Kennedy Lyndon Johnson John F. Kennedy Woodrow Wilson John Adams
12 Lyndon Johnson James Polk James Polk Lyndon Johnson Grover Cleveland John F. Kennedy
13 James Madison Bill Clinton Andrew Jackson John Adams John Adams Grover Cleveland
14 John F. Kennedy Andrew Jackson James Monroe Andrew Jackson William McKinley Lyndon Johnson
15 John Adams Barack Obama Bill Clinton James Madison John F. Kennedy James Monroe
16 James Monroe Lyndon Johnson William McKinley John Quincy Adams James Monroe William McKinley
17 George H.W. Bush John Adams John Adams William McKinley James Madison James Madison
18 Barack Obama Ronald Reagan George H.W. Bush Ulysses Grant Lyndon Johnson John Quincy Adams
19 James Polk John Quincy Adams John Quincy Adams Grover Cleveland George W. Bush Benjamin Harrison
20 William Taft Grover Cleveland James Madison George H.W. Bush William Taft Bill Clinton
21 William McKinley William McKinley Grover Cleveland James Monroe George H.W. Bush Martin Van Buren
22 John Quincy Adams George H.W. Bush Gerald Ford Chester Arthur Bill Clinton William Taft
23 Grover Cleveland Martin Van Buren Ulysses Grant Bill Clinton Calvin Coolidge Rutherford Hayes
24 Gerald Ford William Taft William Taft Andrew Johnson Rutherford Hayes George H.W. Bush
25 Martin Van Buren Chester Arthur Jimmy Carter Gerald Ford John Quincy Adams Ronald Reagan
26 Jimmy Carter Ulysses Grant Calvin Coolidge Calvin Coolidge Chester Arthur Chester Arthur
27 Calvin Coolidge James Garfield Richard Nixon Rutherford Hayes Martin Van Buren Jimmy Carter
28 Ulysses Grant Gerald Ford James Garfield Zachary Taylor Gerald Ford Gerald Ford
29 Benjamin Harrison Calvin Coolidge Zachary Taylor Benjamin Harrison Ulysses Grant Zachary Taylor
30 Rutherford Hayes Richard Nixon Benjamin Harrison William Taft Benjamin Harrison Calvin Coolidge
31 James Garfield Rutherford Hayes Martin Van Buren John Tyler Herbert Hoover Millard Fillmore
32 Chester Arthur Jimmy Carter Chester Arthur Jimmy Carter Richard Nixon John Tyler
33 Zachary Taylor Zachary Taylor Rutherford Hayes Millard Fillmore Zachary Taylor Franklin Pierce
34 Richard Nixon Benjamin Harrison Herbert Hoover James Garfield Jimmy Carter Ulysses Grant
35 George W. Bush William Harrison John Tyler Warren Harding John Tyler Herbert Hoover
36 John Tyler Herbert Hoover George W. Bush Herbert Hoover Millard Fillmore Richard Nixon
37 Millard Fillmore John Tyler Millard Fillmore George W. Bush Andrew Johnson Andrew Johnson
38 Herbert Hoover Millard Fillmore Warren Harding Richard Nixon Franklin Pierce James Buchanan
39 William Harrison George W. Bush William Harrison William Harrison Warren Harding Warren Harding
40 Franklin Pierce Franklin Pierce Franklin Pierce Martin Van Buren James Buchanan
41 Andrew Johnson Warren Harding Andrew Johnson Franklin Pierce
42 Warren Harding James Buchanan James Buchanan James Buchanan
43 James Buchanan Andrew Johnson

Sources and notes:
  1. Poll of several hundred members of the American Political Science Association by the Brookings Institution; Brandon Rottinghaus and Justin S. Vaughn, "Measuring Obama against the Great Presidents," brookings.edu, Apr. 2, 2015

  2. Participants were 238 "presidential scholars, historians and political scientists;" "Presidents 2010 Rank by Category," www.siena.edu, July 1, 2010

  3. Participants were 65 "presidential historians" and "other professional observers of the presidency;" "C-SPAN 2009 Historians Presidential Leadership Survey," www.c-span.org, 2009

  4. Participants were 8 correspondents, editors, bureau chiefs, columnists, and writers of The Times; "Who's the Greatest? The Times US Presidential Rankings," by Jeremy Griffin and Nico Hines, www.timesonline.co.uk, Oct. 28, 2008

  5. Because of the short durations of their terms, William Henry Harrison and James Garfield were excluded from this ranking; participants were 85 "professors of history, law, political science and economics... the presidents are ranked in order of mean score, adjusted to give equal weight to Democratic- and Republican-leaning respondents;" "The Rankings," www.opinionjournal.com, Sep. 12, 2005

  6. Participants were 32 "historians and close observers of presidential leadership;" "Rating the Presidents: Washington to Clinton," by Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., Political Science Quarterly, Summer 1997