Best Presidents of the United States


The Top TenXW

1Abraham Lincoln (16)

Should be above Bush, you think 911 was worse than the civil war?
Clinton balanced the budget and actually left a surplus but top 5? No.
Personally don't think Bush43, Clinton, JFK, or Nixon belong in the top 10.
JFK was not a good president, just remembered well. Nixon was a brilliant politician but remembered as a shady scumbag, even compared to other politicians. FDR elected 4 times but if it weren't for WWII his new deal would have destroyed America not to mention court packing is worse than what Nixon did. FDR = shadiest president every (adulterer, internment camps, undercutting his own party to win a 3rd term... ) Obama is the worst for the deficit so far of any president in history and he won a nobel prize because they hoped that he wouldn't vote on a troop surge, which he did anyway. Those aren't arguments for praise. Any honorable recipient would have returned it after his decision but he was probably busy visiting the last of the "57" states. Washington had the toughest job, building a nation, he should be higher. Teddy ARE was only 42 when he became president, that should be considered. As long as Buchanan or Harding aren't up there guess can't complain too much.

Abraham Lincoln is the reason the United States is still United and began the elimination of racism by ending slavery. To do this he began a largely unpopular but necessary war. This made him hated to the point where he was assassinated but he went through with his decision anyway. Would any politician today do this? I doubt it.

Abraham Lincoln was man you could change his ideas. Like slavery he first thought it was good. Then he realized that slavery was wrong. He did almost everything to fix the country. No other president thought about slavery should be wrong or even segregation. Martin Luther king jr was not a president but still fought for what is right. Only Abraham Lincoln thought slavery was wrong. He was a man of changes and does what should be right among us. If he didn't exist there still would be slavery and African Americans would not be equally treated. So I think Abraham Lincoln should be the best president in history.

This is the kind of president we need now to to do the right thing for America.

V141 Comments
2George Washington (1)

Even more than Jefferson or Madison he fought for a balance between state and federal government. Not to mention he believed in what he was doing. - LadyLioness

George Washington was a much better president that Abe Lincoln. Washington fought a war that was necessary for us to be a free country. Lincoln's war was not really necessary. If he had let the Confederate States stand, they would have wanted to rejoin the union within a short period of time. The North would have invited them back. Both the the North and the South needed each other. Slavery was not an issue in the war until 1863 when Lincoln issued his Emancipation Proclamation which accomplished absolutely nothing. It only applied to the states over which Lincoln had no authority at the time. It didn't apply to the slaves in the states which were under his control. There were slaves in Pennsylvania, New York, Connetticut and is a few other states. The purpose as stated by Lincoln was to "preserve the Union". If did preserve the Union at the expense of several fortunes and over half a million lives.

#1. (no party) The father of this nation. If it wasn't for him, we simply would not be here and would never have gotten the experience to live in the best country in the world. It is because of strong and heroic men like him, that we live free today and he is a constant reminder of our democracy and the reason why our flag stands up strong and will continue to serve us forever and ever!

Don't get me wrong. I love America. But even if the country I am about to say did have an evil, evil history and terrible leaders, it got better after a bit. I'm proud to be 1/4 of the country who brought us Albert Einstein, even if Steven Hawking is smarter. Germany FOR THE WIN!

Everything needs a beginning and this president risked his neck to get us there.

V57 Comments
3Ronald Reagan (40)

#40. (Republican) he was able to fix the economy, create twenty million new jobs, lower inflation rates, exempt low income Americans, create economic stability for small businesses, lower taxes, and bring in an end to the Cold War with his concise and effective foreign policy skills. He also was able to survive a gun shot and return to his duty only three weeks later. A real true American who believed in this country and a real true father to Conservatism! Even the democrats loved him. Good Bless Reagan.

Ronald Reagen is top president. He is a real but kicker, and if you see this in heaven ron I'll say you're the best president that ever lived and is still living.

The only president that was true to his word, most people that don't like him want a pacifist in charge, why do you think we are still bad ass

He was a true leader of all people. I fear he may be the last great president America will ever have.

V166 Comments
4Thomas Jefferson (3)

Thomas Jefferson is one of the most underrated presidents ever. The fact that G.W. bush and Bill Clinton were voted above Jefferson is bad enough, but Lincoln being number two is unbelievable. Lincoln destroyed Jefferson's vision of a free, VOLUNTARY union of sovereign states. If people understood history, Bush, Clinton, LINCOLN, and all other imperialist presidents would be voted down as some of the worst presidents in the history of the country. Read Jefferson's Declaration of Independence and it will become clear that every president which was voted above Jefferson (with the exception of Washington) supported policies which were counter to the founders' vision.

Thomas Jefferson was a Hypocrite... he might have come up with the Declaration of Independence but he refuse to free the slaves because their absence would make his life hard. I have not respect his efforts.

Thomas Jefferson was a hero, visionary, revolutionary thinker, as well as architect and all around genius. Any man who rejects these facts is just plain stupid and to replace them with the slavery scandal will be just as much so. What jefferson provided for this nation far surpasses any of his person shortcomings which all presidents even Washington and especially Lincoln, and to judge his political character by these would be foolish.

Are you kidding me? Thomas Jefferson was the best President! He gave us the Louisiana Purchase AND wrote the article that freed us as a nation! The Declaration of Independence! George W. Bush murdered our economy and was a gigantic hypocrite in his foreign policy!

With out Thomas Jefferson we would not have what we have today, Oh, sorry before the Dem's run our county into a hold.

V21 Comments
5Franklin D Roosevelt (32)

Franklin D Roosevelt is probably my favorite, if not one of my favorite, presidents to date. He was so ahead of his time in his beliefs about how to properly handle the depression. In the 1920's, America was overrun with conservative rugged-individualists who wanted the government to be as weak as possible and hated any attempts by the Feds to regulate the economy. This lead to the Great Depression, which crippled the planet's economy and left 99% of humans dirt poor. Roosevelt brought back progressivism and, more amazingly, brought it into the previously racist and white supremacist Democratic Party. Wilson's attempts to do this during WWI failed because he himself had been a white supremacist and a radical southern baptist. Roosevelt deserves the credit for actually re-starting progressivism, and in doing so saving the country from collapsing into total anarchy. He passed new laws to regulate the printing and value of money, the competence of banks, emergency funding of schools and hospitals and even some special benefits to the 30% of Americans who were unemployed. His administration also established welfare to protect the rights and lifestyle of senior citizens and retirees, homeless people, sick and injured people, children and pregnant women. Aid was sent to help homeless Americans and other poor people get food, halfway decent shelter, medicine, clothing and water, basic necessities that they were seriously lacking. Roosevelt signed bills into office that gave everyone state run welfare, since almost nobody could afford even simple supplies. He signed in bills to help small businesses from being annihilated and tried to help the banks by proposing new ways of handling money. He had giant public works projects set up like highway building and construction work to distribute money to the needy and to get the government more money without reading taxes too high. So many people benefited from his policies that they elected him four times, more an any other president before or since. This was a man who had grown up filthy rich and generally cut off from poor people, but he cared so much about the average workmen, factory worker, tenet farmer, mother, orphan and homeless man that you would expect him to have grown up in a refrigerator box. And he did all of this, amazingly, without the ability to walk and while paralyzed from the waist down for life. Of course, It would be foolish not to mention WWII. Roosevelt hated Hitler and fascism, but wanted to stay out of the war because he felt that the American people did not want it, and that starting another global conflict would only make the situation worse. Although, even before the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, he was sending oodles of weapons, tanks, planes and trucks across the pond to help Britain and met with Winston Churchill numerous times. When Pearl Harbor was bombed, he proposed that America should fight Japan last and fight the Nazis first because of they're obsession with taking over the world (and yes, that would include the United States) and attempts to exterminate the Jews. While he really was disgusted with Japanese atrocities, he was also a pragmatist. A prime example of his pragmatism is when he was forced to support the lesser of the two evils in Europe, the brutal "communist" regime of Yosef Stalin. Under Roosevelt, Americans gave the axis a beating (not that the Russians or Brits did nothing or were in insignificant, the USA was influential because it had the ability to fight the axis on both sides of the world). Italy crumbled under the allies and the Nazis and Japanese kept being dragged back more and more as America became more and more involved in the fighting until they were forced to fight to the last man, women and child to even have a chance at surviving the allied onslaught. Basically, Roosevelt and Churchill saved the whole world from falling into the unimaginable tyranny of Adolph Hitler's thousand year Reich. Although it was impossible to save the Jews from the Nazi death camps, even with such a large army, he certainly played his part in making sure an atrocity on that scale could never take place again, by playing an instrumental role in helping establish the United Nations. Today, the UN helps people all over the world escape from genocide, and it's role in the defense of human rights elsewhere cannot be ignored. That guy really stood up to his own words, when he said that "one man can make a difference, and everyone should try", a sentence that hopefully people of our generation will come to understand as well. This is why I think that DDR was among the best leaders this nation has ever and will ever have.

Lead us through one of the toughest times this country has ever faced. How could Governor Bush even be on this list. Yes I still call him governor because that's the only political position he's actually ever fairly won (remember Al Gore and Florida? ) - crazyeyes56

He got us through the Great Depression and WWII, and yet George Bush (who got us IN a depression and a war) is still ahead of him. That just doesn't make sense.

Hands down the greatest US president ever

V60 Comments
6John F Kennedy (35)

Seriously? George W. Bush is # 1? All he did was start the Iraq and Afghanistan War, not to mention he barely helped at all when Hurricane Katrina came through. Now JFK, he was amazing. He started the Peace Corps, started the Space Race, made sure African Americans had equal rights in housing( And would've done more for Civil Rights if he served longer), made sure Steel industries couldn't raise their prices over and over, and stopped the Cuban Missile Crysis, and he didn't even serve a full term! So JFK deserves first or second for sure.

I don't disagree with you that JFK was a good president; however, to blame the Iraq/Afghan War on George Bush is absolutely ignorant of the entire remainder of the story. - themusicking101

He's was the only Irish-Catholic president ever, and he was the youngest elected president ever. No one can represent the world, let alone America, as well as this guy. He would've completely solved any problems with Russia or Cuba, and who knows, even Korea or the Middle East. This guy knew what he was doing, unlike some other guys (ahem... Bush).

People who say JFK doesn't belong in the top ten obviously don't know JFK at all. He negotiated the Cuban Missile Crisis, which stopped a potential nuclear war, he was the one who started the Space Race which ultimately landed an AMERICAN on the moon, and he was a war hero, Purple Heart bearer who was willing to die for his country long before he actually did. I would cast my vote for JFK as one of the best presidents ever any day.

"I just love him based on my instinct."

V94 Comments
7Theodore Roosevelt (26)

An honest politician, if there is such a thing. A man who actually cared about the average American citizen and the environment. He was brave in conflicts on the battlefield and in Washington. I'm not what you would call an educated man (only high school grad. ) But I can read and from what I have read, I feel I am right. We would have no National Parks if it was for him. A great solider, sportsman, conservationist, and most of all President. Thank God for Teddy Roosevelt.

#26. (Republican) strong imperialistic leader who's influence on government is still vital to the U.S. today with the creation of the Big Stick Policy. His love for nature and keeping America's national landmarks forever reserved is a constant symbol representing our pride and integrity! He also installed other effective policies such as the Meat Inspection Act and was determined to fight for the workers rights and benefits for the many Americans affected by America's Industrial Period.

Come on, he was a cowboy for one, and was even shot before giving a speech but still gave it.

I love him Teddy Bear.

V29 Comments
8Dwight D. Eisenhower (34)

#34. (Republican) the strong and heroic WW2 general who lead the successful attack on Normandy. He helped the Americans defeat Hitler and it is because of his efficient military actions that helped us win V.E. day (Victory in Europe Day). If it wasn't for him, Hitler would have probably taken over the world, killed the rest of the Jews, and would have the remaining people still living under nazi occupation. Eisenhower was not only a superb war general but also a great president who was a strong civil rights activist and dedicated his presidency to stopping the spread of segregation across America. Not only did he get us out of WW2, but later during his presidency, he also got us out of the Korean War. The fact that he was able to get us out of two wars is very astonishing and is something that not everyone can achieve in their lifetime! However, he did it and he did it well!

The reason why America rose to be a GREAT nation. He built our national infrastructure. He built our space program. He educated our population. He WARNED of the military industrial complex. He oversaw 8 years of peace during one of the worst periods in history. He was everything that Republicans today despise.

He was a very good president during the war.

He is a good president!

V12 Comments
9William Clinton (42)

I've lost all faith in this list and in the people who have voted Bush as the 2nd best president, though I'm not surprised if you get your info from Fox News or even MSNBC.

The economy was BOOMING fantastically during this man's terms, and he knew how to work with both the Democratic and Republican party. Gas was cheaper than it ever was under George W Bush (and Barack Obama's first term. Another thing is that Bush DID NOT inherit a recession from Clinton; he inherited a SURPLUS and drove it into the ground, and yet the man is second place on this list?!

Bill Clinton is one of the greatest leaders of all time. Awesome economic boom and ridiculously good foreign policy. Not the best overall, but definitely better than GEORGE BUSH. What a terrible list.
1. Lincoln (held union together, terrific supporter of universal freedom)
2. Washington (basically founded the nations values set precedents yadayada)
3. FDR (wartime president, ended great depression, etc. )
4. Clinton (mentioned)
5. Kennedy, if only...
6. Jefferson
7. Madison
8. GHW Bush (he was actually pretty good).

It was the best era in my life time. The economy was good. I had my first job and making good money. There was so much prosperity and so much surplus then little Bush took us to war in Middle East and took it all away.

We thrived under is leadership despite all the partisan booby traps

V41 Comments
10James Madison (4)

#4. (Democratic-Republican) the father of the bill of rights who helped create the individual demands and benefits that still hold true to the American people this very day! Another perfect example of a founding father who's policies helped America succeed and improve its conditions for a stronger and more reliable nation. His strong inspiration and courage is a constant reminder of the civil liberties that represent our constitution and law of the land.

He led the nation through the War of 1812, securing US sovereignty for generations to come. He was also the father of the constitution and help to write the Federalist Papers without which we might not have democracy in the world today.

Creator of the Bill of Rights and the United States Constitution, which is perhaps one of the most important documents in the Western World.

V4 Comments

The Contenders

11John Adams (2)

#2. (Federalist) another founding father who's examples lead to the creation of the constitution and declaration of independence. It is because of his actions that lead to our freedoms and fought for our rights as American citizens. He is also the well known successor of our nation's first president George Washington and continued to carry out his dreams and responsibilities that made America stand strong to this very day!

With few exceptions, John Adams is unmatched in Character, morals and honor. Of those in the 'top 10' only Abraham Lincoln and Thomas Jefferson come close to matching Adams. He is one of the original founding fathers, as a lawyer he defended the British soldiers in the Boston massacre (and got them equitted in a Boston courtroom full of people who wanted to hang them). He consistantly voted for what he believed was right (including voting for Indian rights) even when it was not popular. What president in the last 50 years would do that?

John Adams Founded Our Navy. He helped write the Declaration of Independence and you putt him at number 15 and Obama at 13 I mean all Obama did is get us 20,000,000,000 dollars in debt. I don't think he is the greatest president but at least top 10

He was husband of Abigail Adams, he was amazing, too! - funnyuser

V4 Comments
12Andrew Jackson (7)

He was one of the first presidents to come from nothing into something, and used those skills he grew up with, as well as his military skills to influence the idea of expanding American democracy for virtually all white males, which was revolutionary at that time. He also saved us from getting into a civil war by passing a bill to lower taxes on cotton in the south, since the south, especially South Carolina, had been taxed on cotton severely.

Jackson's policies toward Native Americans will haunt the population for ever in that he went against the Supreme Court and stationed US troops in Georgia in an attempt to settle and drive all of them out on the Trail of Tears.

If only more people knew this travesty. You forgot the part about Scalp Bounties though -- it gets even uglier. - theOpinionatedOne

Andrew was the first president from humble beginnings, breaking the tradition of elite in office. His strong sense of nationalism was critical in his fight against the BUS and a strong central government

I hate Jackson because he was mean to my ancestors.

V16 Comments
13Harry S Truman (33)

Harry did what was right not popular, forcing owners and strikers to meet, integrating the military and firing MacArthur's ass. Heck he even brought in a surplus and actually lived a normal life after his presidency.

About the only Democrat I fully respect. Without him, god knows what the country would be right now.

An underdog who got absolutely no support from his predessor but on his own merits become probably one of the best and most courageous of the presidents.

He was the only President who came into office during the most harsh times and created a new society in both America and Europe.

V13 Comments
14Woodrow Wilson (28)

He had a strong heart by believing Self-Determination and had the right idea of the establishing the League of Nations. He deserves to be a bit higher.

Kind of forgotten now but a brave man he was to be I'll and still go on, there's a few more who did the same but this guy was great

Should be #8 at least. Kept banking system intact, keeping the Great Depression from being much greater.

Lead during the first world war. Set the way for the U.N. to be built.

V9 Comments
15James Polk (11)

James Knox Polk was THE best example of a leader with efficiency, promise, consistency, and was really a major unsung hero. Polk came into the presidency with some laid-out goals, promised to get them all done, ended up completing everything he wanted to do (which was incredibly significant and crucial), and then left and never came back. What a bad-ass. This guy never gets enough credit and is a true success among US presidents. Polk's my favorite of all time, and he should definitely be a Top 10 staple. Polk should never be looked past.

Should be much higher! Annexed Texas, the Oregon Territory and the Mexican Session. Lowered Tariffs and set the groundwork for our modern banking system and completed it all in 4 years. We could use more like him.

Seriously underrated President. Polk was the only President in history who achieved all of his campaign wishes. He managed to win us California, New Mexico, Nevada, Colorado, Utah, Oregon, etc. within only 4 years. Very effective leader.

One President who cared about the average person. He had vision and was courageous!

V6 Comments
16James Monroe (5)

James Monroe should be number 14 greatest president. Obama stinks!

17John Q Adams (6)

Only president that I agree with all of his decisions: supported high tariffs, strong national bank, nationalizing canals and railroads, giving rights to Native Americans, and supporting the arts and academia. - akiva254

18Ulysses S. Grant (18)

His high moral character which is evident in his attempts of peace with the native americans, along with sending federal troops to round up the k in the south has to be appreciated considering he followed arguably the most racist president ever (A. Johnson)

I was named after him. A general and an author of an interesting book.

He was the first president in an ambulance

19Calvin Coolidge (30)

One of the few Presidents who stayed out of the way, and the country prospered.

Herbert hoover also stayed out of the way but the country fell apart under his watch

He led us in the most prosperous times in America where the American dream was alive.

Way underrated... He ALLOWED for America to be America

V5 Comments
20Lyndon B. Johnson (36)

LBJ should be higher his issues came in his foreign policy. However his work in creating the america we see today is irrefutable. He passed the Civil Rights act of 64 and Voting rights act of 65 creating an Atmosphere where in which African Americans can prosper rather than be discriminated on. Not to mention 'the great Society' in this period he created a prosperous nation of equality which the US takes for granted today, it is my firm belief that as a democratic leader LBJ is the best the US has had however overall not so.

Johnson's record on civil rights, poverty, education and the environment was unequalled. This places him as probably the most influential president of the 20th century. His influence has endured and his reputation has grown steadily with time.

Over 90% of help people get from the government today is because of this guy... Yeah, he escalated the Vietnam War, but his accomplishments are enormous. The most underrated president, and top five overall

Ensured the civil rights bills and was a generally a caring man

V5 Comments
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1. George Washington (1)
2. Theodore Roosevelt (26)
3. Abraham Lincoln (16)
1. John F Kennedy (35)
2. Lyndon B. Johnson (36)
3. William Clinton (42)
1. Abraham Lincoln (16)
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