- Special Features
- Blogs & Columns
- Fun & Games
As the nation draws nearer to the presidential election, it’s important for voting citizens to know what qualities they are looking for in the potential new President of the United States. So in honor of the November 6 election, we bring you America’s five best, most successful presidents from each political party – Republican and Democratic – which together make up our choices for the top ten best presidents in all of American history! Did your favorite make the list?
5. Andrew Jackson – Serving the country from March 4, 1829 to March 4, 1837, Jackson’s leadership – though now considered controversial, as he supported slavery – benefited the nation in a number of ways. It is because of his guidance that the Democratic Party was differentiated from that of the Republican Party, and he did so by setting clear, concise viewpoints and principles.
4. Harry S. Truman – After the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Vice President Truman was obligated to take on the role of President, serving two terms from April 12, 1945 to January 20, 1953. Truman won the nation over with his strong resistance towards corporate America. However, the former President is most notable for being in office when our nation dropped nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, ending World Word II.
3. Woodrow Wilson – It is because of Wilson’s leadership from March 4, 1913 to March 4, 1921 that our country has many of the bills we have today, as he is responsible for passing the Federal Reserve Act, Federal Trade Commission and Revenue Act of 1913 – giving us our first advanced income tax. Wilson is also credited for creating the League of Nations, which has remained an important aspect of American success even to this day.
2. John F. Kennedy – Well-known today for his unfortunate assassination, Kennedy stayed in office from January 20, 1961 to November 22, 1963. His leadership was based on the idea that American people should work together to contribute to the well-being of the nation, famously saying, “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” Kennedy was a proud proponent of worldwide peace, making great efforts to encourage other countries to remain peaceful with both one another and themselves. He also gave Americans the national security they needed during times of extreme crisis.
1. Franklin D. Roosevelt – After winning four elections and serving from March 4, 1933 to April 12, 1945, Roosevelt aided and offered support to America through the most difficult times in all of our history – the great depression and World War II. He created the New Deal plan, which helped boost our dying economy while still promoting the well-being of the nation. Roosevelt was also revered as a truly honorable and dedicated individual, making him one of the most beloved presidents of all time.
5. George H. W. Bush – Beginning his national leadership as Vice President of the United States under President Ronald Reagan, Bush saw an opportunity to change our great nation, running for office in 1988. Although he only served one term, Bush is arguably one of America’s best Republican presidents because he began the fight against Saddam Hussein, carrying out The Gulf War – Operation Desert Storm in which he drove Iraq out of Kuwait with very few American deaths. And although this instance led to bigger issues in Iraq years later, Bush’s poll numbers – at that time – reached the highest they had ever been.
4. Dwight D. Eisenhower – In office from 1953 – 1961, Eisenhower – a highly revered military leader – helped to expand Social Security and is responsible for creating the Department of Health, Education and Welfare. He also endorsed the Interstate Highway System in 1956, which helped American and military growth. In fact, Eisenhower was so popular that he became the first President required to leave office, as he served the maximum number of terms allowed by the U.S. Constitution.
3. Abraham Lincoln – Serving our country from 1860 until his assassination on April 14, 1865, President Lincoln is praised for carrying the nation through the Civil War and legally abolishing slavery with the passing of the 13th Amendment. Lincoln is also notable as giving one of the most famous speeches of all time, 1863’s Gettysburg Address.
2. Theodore Roosevelt – Charismatic, full of life and well-educated – graduating from Harvard University – Teddy Roosevelt became President in 1901 after the assassination of President McKinley. His focus was on heavily regulating American businesses. He also sparked today’s presidential press briefing by gaining popularity with the media for his kindness and well-spoken nature. Furthermore, Roosevelt was honored with the Nobel Peace Prize for aiding in the end of the Russo-Japanese War.
1. Ronald Reagan – Beginning his career as a big time Hollywood actor, Reagan’s good looks and charm made him an easy fan favorite. After being voted into office in 1981 at the age of 69 – making him the oldest elected President in history – Reagan helped strengthen America’s lagging economy by putting “Reaganomics” into effect, which focused on making large tax cuts. He was also an advocate for drug-free schools and workplaces, beginning what he called the War on Drugs. But most important of all, Reagan is credited with bring the Cold War to an end, famously demanding, “Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!”