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How will history judge Trump and Biden?

By Curt Anderson
March 21, 2021 5:53 pm
Category: History

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Less than three months into his presidency, the jury is still out on Joe Biden, but the we already know how Donald Trump is being assessed. Most of us could have guessed how historians and political scientists would judge Trump.

One of the main determinates of presidential ranking is how the Oval Office occupant handled a crisis. The two presidential rankings which I link to below were done pre-pandemic which was arguably Trump's greatest crisis. How good or bad Trump's response to COVID-19 was is a matter of opinion.

There also are other less subjective measures that influence ranking. These three factors offer an indication of how history will view them. History tends to agree with the assessment of voters. Factors 1 and 2 tend to work against a president's ranking. Factor 3 tends improve presidential ranking.

1. Presidents who lost the popular vote but elected president: Donald Trump, George W. Bush, Rutherford B. Hayes and John Quincy Adams.

2. Presidents who were defeated in re-election: Donald Trump, Jimmy Carter, Gerald R. Ford, Herbert Hoover, Benjamin Harrison, Grover Cleveland, John Quincy Adams and John Adams.

3. Presidents who defeated an incumbent to become president: Joseph R. Biden, Bill Clinton, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Benjamin Harrison, Grover Cleveland, Andrew Jackson and Thomas Jefferson.

What the experts think
The Siena College Research Institute voted these three as the worst presidents: Donald Trump, Andrew Johnson with James Buchanan at the bottom of the barrel.

The American Political Science Association ranked Donald Trump as the worst president.

Find out how you'd rank the past presidents with this selector Which Past US President Is The Best?

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