Thursday, September 6, 2007

Ranking the presidents: This blogger's view

Since it’s a popular task for both armchair and more professional historians, I’m going to wade into the battle myself.

Presidents are ranked by numeric order and given a letter grade on the standard A-F scale, including pluses and minuses. Contra historical writing, since I’m analyzing presidents, not presidencies, Cleveland’s two presidencies are lumped under one rating. And, I’ve nuanced the rankings with multiple grades for some presidents.

1. Abraham Lincoln, A+.
2. George Washington. A.
3. FDR. A.
4. TR. A-/B+.
5. Ike. B+.
6. James Monroe. B.
7. LBJ. B/B-.
8. Carter. B/B-.
9. James K. Polk. B/B-.
10. Hayes. B-.
11. Jefferson. B-.
12. Truman. B-.
13. Kennedy B-.
14. Taft. B-/C+.
15. Reagan. B-/D.
16. Clinton. C+/D.
17. Madison. C+/C.
18. Arthur. C.
19. McKinley. C/C-.
20. Cleveland. C and D.
21. Garfield. C-.
22. Benjamin Harrison. C.
23. John Quincy Adams C-
24. Ford. C-.
25. Bush, George H.W. C-/D+.
26. Adams. C-/D.
27. Woodrow Wilson. C-/D.
28. Coolidge. D+/D.
29. Hoover. D.
30. William Henry Harrison. D/Inc.
31. Tyler. D.
32. Van Buren. D.
33. Grant. D.
34. Harding. D/D-.
35. Fillmore. D/D-.
36. Taylor. D-.
37. Jackson. D-.
38. Nixon. F+.
39. Pierce. F+.
40. George W. Bush, F.
41. Andrew Johnson, F.
42. James Buchanan, F.

See the explanatory justification for each ranking at my blog. (I didn’t want to eat up massive posting space on a group blog without prior consent.