Trump ranked fourth from worst in C-SPAN’s 2021 presidential rankings
Former President Trump is the fourth-lowest-ranking U.S. president, according to C-SPAN’s 2021 President Historians Survey.
C-SPAN’s survey, first conducted in 2000, includes 142 historians, professors and other professional observers of the presidency who gave all former presidents a score from one to 10 in multiple leadership characteristics. The results are then averaged to tabulate a score.
Trump received a score of 312, giving him a ranking of 41 and placing him above former Presidents Pierce, Andrew Johnson and Buchanan. This is Trump’s first time appearing on the list, with the last survey having been released in 2017, when his term had just begun.
In comparison, former President Obama received a score of 664, making him 10th in the rankings. His ranking went up by two places, placing him above his two immediate predecessors, former Presidents George W. Bush and Clinton, who ranked 21st and 19th, respectively.
According to C-SPAN, Trump’s highest-ranking leadership categories were Public Persuasion, in which he ranked 32nd, and Economic Management, in which he ranked 34th. His lowest scores were in Moral Authority and Administrative Skills, ranking 44th in both of those characteristics.
“I think it’s important to note that this is not a scientific survey. While the 10 leadership characteristics have remained the same over the years, the participants have changed,” Rachel Katz, C-SPAN’s survey project coordinator, said Wednesday while appearing on “Washington Journal.”
“We understand that it takes time once a president has left office to get a full assessment of the presidency, but we do conduct the survey soon after an administration so that we have a benchmark, so that we have a window into what the historians are thinking soon after an administration ends,” Katz added.
Former President Lincoln ranked No. 1, as he has every year the survey has been conducted. Three previous surveys were released in 2000, 2009 and 2017. The survey is conducted each time there is a change in administration.
C-SPAN noted that former President Grant experienced the largest jump in rankings, moving up from 33rd to 20th.