Barack Obama and Ronald Reagan are up, Bill Clinton is down and Donald Trump is off to a historically bad start — and the greats, meanwhile, remain the greats. It was the finding of the 2018 Presidents & Executive Politics Presidential Greatness Survey, released Monday by professors Brandon Rottinghaus of the University of Houston and Justin S. Vaughn of Boise State University.
The survey results, ranking American presidents from best to worst, were based on responses from 170 current and recent members of the Presidents and Executive Politics section of the American Political Science Association.
Obama moved from 18th in 2014, when the survey was last conducted, to 8th in the current survey. Reagan jumped from 11th to 9th. Bill Clinton, meanwhile, fell from 8th to 13th — perhaps as a result of heightened attention to sexual misconduct in the midst of the #MeToo movement. Trump came in dead last.
Among those polled who identified themselves as Republicans and/or conservatives, Trump ranks 40th. Their bottom five: Trump, Andrew Johnson, Franklin Pierce, William Henry Harrison, and James Buchanan.