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Readers Respond: Who Do You Think Were the Top Ten Most Influential Presidents?

Responses: 130



I think that leaving Reagan out of the top ten in respect to a couple of those that are named is ludicrous. The result of Reaganomics was one of single greatest economic periods in history. Though I also believe that while wholly unintentional and incomprehensibly overlooked, Reagan policy was the catalyst for the savings and loan debacle, it is quite clear that even with the other black marks considered, the Reagan presidency is responsible for monumentally historic events domestically and globally that few others compete. The major considerations must be to note where we were upon Reagan's election, Reagan's background from birth to 1976 and the level of tactics used to try to defeat him and the consequences of those tactics The events, statistics and simple, numerical facts , including the election and re-election figures and his enduring popularity, surely position Reagan in the top ten without question
—Guest Craig Hearn

top ten preisdents

Lyndon Johnson's legislative achievements were enormous. His civil rights record is unparalled and Medicare has saved and prolonged countless American lives. He belongs in anyone's top ten, VietNam notwithstanding.
—Guest pasquale

Not in agreement

Some of the presidents in my opinion did not influence the State positively because they broke great trends that has made magnificent impact in the world today. If the 22nd amendment had not being institutionalized, who knows what may have become of this great State. Example is President Roosevelt. My country respects USA so much because of its' adherence to state regulations.
—Guest Celestina Assan

best does not = influential

Influential does not mean best. While I would agree that many of the aforementioned presidents were very accomplished, some were not influential. On the flip side, some presidents that were not named had a negative influence on America. So here is my top 5 influential presidents. 1. Nixon- The Watergate Scandal completely changed the media's role in politics. 2. Wilson- He attacked everything that moved. He also fired every black worker in the White House, effectively segregating it after several decades of desegregation. 3. Lincoln - Slavery was ended under his comand, but his most influenial act, was his death. 4. Eisenhower- The man's military style leadership change American Leadership, plus, he came up with a really catchy slogan. 5. Reagan/Obama - Both infuenced the public, not by an act, but with charisma, to the point of changing American mentality.
—Guest 100011010

most important presidents

1. John Hanson, this is the president that held the country together after the revolution. 2. Richard Henry Lee, His resolution in congress led to the declaration of independence. 3. George Washington 4. Thomas Jefferson 5. John Adams These three, in fact these five set the tone for how the Office of the President would work for years to come. 6. Abraham Lincoln for saving this Republic by defending it's constitution against itself. 7 & 8 both Roosevelt's, Although considered a bad president FDR gave the country many reasons to pull together for WW2 9. Eisenhower, the last true war hardened General President, a strong leader in a cold war because he was a strong leader in war. We need a few more cut from that cloth. 10. Has yet to be born...

In No Particular Order

1. Franklin Roosevelt - His New Deal changed the course of American society. 2. Ronald Reagan - For ending the Cold War. 3 & 4 - George Washington & Abraham Lincoln - Obvious. 5. Andrew Jackson - His dealings with the eastern Native American tribes was a turning point in American History. 6. Thomas Jefferson - For extending the country from ocean to ocean. 7. Woodrow Wilson - Bad influence - His dealing with World War I set the stage for World War II. 8.Teddy Roosevelt - Starting the National Park system. 9. Harry Truman - Authorizing the first use of a nuclear bomb against an enemy. 10. Barack Obama - Regardless of whether you think he is good or bad, his presidency is going to change American society one or another for years to come.

My Top 10 American Presidents

1. George Washington 2. Abraham Lincoln 3. Theodore Roosevelt 4. Franklin Roosevelt 5. Harry Truman 6. Dwight Eisenhower 7. Ronald Reagan 8. Thomas Jefferson 9. James Monroe 10. James Polk
—Guest John Duster

Top 10

Some on this list were not influential, but were Top 10 accomplished. George Washington 2.Thomas Jefferson 3.John Adams 4. Millard Fillmore 5. Abraham Lincoln 6.Chester A. Arthur 7. Calvin Coolidge 8. Harry Truman 9. Dwight Eisenhower 10. Theodore Roosevelt. Wlson and FDR were awful presidents although FDR did inspire Americans. Too bad he began the destruction of our nation that Wilson began in earnest. Both Wilson and FDR were unfortunately influential and have been almost deified by many historians.

The Best of Ten

The first person who should be top is President Washington. He was a Whig, the last of the British government but the man that knew not what was next for an American President, and they wanted him be king.
—Guest Ronnie Lowry

My 10 Favorite Presidents

I admire Guests Jan, Raivyn & Steve for their dissertations on Wilson, Madison and Washington respectively, although the first 2 were influential in a bad way. Ditto for Jay Wadleigh’s takes on FDR & LBJ. My Ten: [1]Washington [2]Jefferson [3]Reagan [4]Monroe [5]Lincoln [6]TR [7]Jackson [8]Polk [9]John Adams [10]Eisenhower
—Guest PanamaRod

Best and Worst

Washington, Reagan, Jackson, Madison, FDR, J. Adams, TR, Jefferson, Madison. Lincoln may have been IF he had finished his second term....Worst - Buchanan, Grant, Clinton......
—Guest Maverick

top 6 Presidents

Washington Lincoln FD Rossevelt Truman Kennedy Reagan sorry I can only think of six

Top Ten Presidents

LBJ did not end the Vietnam War (Nixon did); T.Jefferson did not end the Slave Trade--it was written into the Constitution. Top 10--Washington, Lincoln, FDR, Reagan,McKinley, Polk, Coolidge, Jackson, Eisenhower and Jefferson

Washington #1

Washington has to be number one. 1st, he set so many traditions, such as the two term limit and setting up a cabinet, that many presidents after him followed; 2nd, had he wanted to, he could easily have thrown out the constitution and set up either a monarchy or a military dictatorship and the US would have followed him because he was so popular. Washing ton also had one of the toughest jobs demanded of any president, with the possible exception of Lincoln. Washington had to appoint the entire supreme court (something no president has had to do since [at one time]), set up civil service positions, (such as the State department, etc.), and, most importantly, he held the nation together in the very early years of the republic. Lincoln is 2nd, FDR 3rd, Teddy Roosevelt 4th, Truman 5th, Jefferson 6th, Andrew Jackson 7th, Ike (Dwight D. . Eisenhower) 8, Woodrow Wilson 9, and Reagan 10. Worst: Andrew Johnson.
—Guest Keel


I would say John Adams is the best. Without his works and ideas we would not have any agriculture or any loans to get this wonderful country going! He went to France and the Netherlands for loans and naval support he also made peace with France in a time of desperate need. Also he beard his sons death and daughters before he laird beside his wife before she died. Also I have great respect for Jefferson and Washington because they had zeal with their cause and the power to protect the constitution and rights of natural born American Heros!

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