Poll: Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton Best Recent Presidents

By Today, Usa | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, February 19, 2012 | Go to article overview

Poll: Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton Best Recent Presidents


Today, Usa, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


Americans believe Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton will be judged the best presidents of the past four decades, the Gallup Poll is reporting.

At least six in 10 respondents said the 40th president, whose Reagan Revolution reinvigorated the American people, and the 42nd, who was the only Democrat since Franklin D. Roosevelt to win a second term, would be considered above average or outstanding, Gallup said.

The public isn't so sure about the current president.

"Three years into Barack Obama's presidency," Gallup said, "Americans are divided in their views of how he will be regarded, with 38% guessing he will be remembered as above average or outstanding and 35% as below average or poor."

The poll said that, "aside from Clinton and Reagan, only George H.W. Bush gets significantly more positive than negative ratings. (Richard) Nixon and George W. Bush are rated as the worst, with roughly half of Americans believing each will be judged negatively."

The key to the popularity of Reagan and Clinton: They governed during good economies, and got credit for improving them.

It's worth nothing that Reagan and Clinton survived scandals during their tenures: Reagan, the Iran-Contra imbroglio; Clinton, impeachment over the Monica Lewinsky matter. …

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