Calvin Coolidge

APSA Presidential Greatness Poll 2024: Declines In Presidential Rankings

The American Political Science Association Presidential Greatness Poll of 2024 reveals major declines in Presidential rankings of 6 Presidents from earlier polls in 2015 and 2018.

The most dramatic decline in this poll is Andrew Jackson down 12 since 2015 to number 21. Also, in a major downward spiral is Calvin Coolidge, down 7 to number 34. James K. Polk also declined by 6 to number 25. And down by 5 are Woodrow Wilson to number 15 and Ronald Reagan to number 16. And Bill Clinton is down by 4 to number 12 since 2015.

The Longevity Of Presidents Analyzed

There is a lot of debate and discussion about Joe Biden’s age.

One needs to examine the history of Presidents and longevity.

In the 20th and 21st centuries, the time of modern America, 40 percent of Presidents (8) have had a short life span, as witness:

Theodore Roosevelt 60
William Howard Taft 72
Woodrow Wilson 67
Warren G. Harding 57
Calvin Coolidge 60
Franklin D. Roosevelt 63
John F. Kennedy 46
Lyndon B. Johnson 64

Other Presidents, 60 percent, (12), have had very long life spans, including

Herbert Hoover 90
Harry Truman 88
Dwight D. Eisenhower 78
Richard Nixon 81
Gerald Ford 93
Jimmy Carter 99 on the coming October 1
Ronald Reagan 93
George H W Bush 94
Bill Clinton 77 and counting
George W. Bush 77 and counting
Donald Trump 77 and counting
Joe Biden 81 on the coming November 20

Then, in a classification by himself, is Barack Obama (62), and seemingly in great health and physical shape!

My conclusion: Presidents and people in general are living longer and healthier, and one cannot deduce from the problems of Senator Diane Feinstein and Senator Mitch McConnell that President Joe Biden will be unable to finish his time in office.

But if, sadly, that becomes an issue, there is absolutly nothing wrong, and a lot very positive, about the ability of Vice President Kamala Harris to take over the Presidency.

When one considers Vice Presidents who succeeded their Presidents during a term, three of them—-Theodore Roosevelt, Harry Truman, and Lyndon B. Johnson excelled—-while the other six who succeeded were far from outstanding.

But we managed to survive all of the time, and Kamala Harris is 59 years old, the general age of most Presidents upon taking office, and perfectly capable of being Chief Executive if an emergency arises!

Calvin Coolidge Became the 30th President A Century Ago!

Precisely a century ago, Vice President Calvin Coolidge succeeded to the Presidency upon the death of President Warren G. Harding.

Coolidge would be shocked to see how the Presidency has been transformed since his time, as he was a believer in a limited Presidency, and is seen as the most conservative President of the 20th century, with the possible exception of Ronald Reagan, who greatly admired him.

Coolidge would have been opposed to the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson, based on his conservative, small government philosophy.

But he also would have been greatly disturbed by the corruption of Richard Nixon and Donald Trump, as his administration moved to prosecute the corruption of his predecessor, who had sadly presided over the most political corruption since Ulysses S. Grant.

It has often been said that Calvin Coolidge would have fit in better in the 19th century, with John Quincy Adams fitting in better a century later in Coolidge’s place!

We can also say he most certainly would not have fitted well in the succession of Republican Chief Executives, particularly Nixon and Trump!

Centennial Of Warren G. Harding’s Death, And Accession Of Calvin Coolidge Coming Up On August 2-3!

The centennial of the death of President Warren G. Harding is arriving on Wednesday, August 2, with Harding passing away of natural causes in San Francisco, shocking the nation, as Harding was on the way to finishing a Western tour, which had included visiting the territory of Alaska.

The swearing in of President Calvin Coolidge took place in the early morning hours on August 3, with Coolidge being sworn in at his father’s homestead in Vermont, where Coolidge was visiting, and with his father, a local justice of the peace, swearing in his son, before he returned to Washington DC, and was again sworn in later in the day.

This was the sixth time a President had died in office, and was the second time that the Vice President who succeeded to the Presidency went on to win a full term of office in 1924, following Theodore Roosevelt, who succeeded the assasinated William McKinley in 1901, and went on to win a full term in 1904.

Harding is regarded by scholars as a failed President, with massive scandals occurring, similar to those of a half century earlier under President Ulysses S. Grant in the 1870s. While he had some successes, he is ranked in the bottom five of all Presidents, in the same category as Andrew Johnson, James Buchanan, Donald Trump, and Franklin Pierce.

Calvin Coolidge is perceived as higher in ranking, generally at the top of the bottom third of Presidents, but shortly after he left office, the Great Depression occurred, and his administration is perceived as having had major negative impact on the economy which led to the Crash on Wall Street seven months after his retirement.

Certainly, the Presidency is seen as having declined in the 1920s, after the Progressive Era of Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and Woodrow Wilson, and seeing rising fortunes after Herbert Hoover, with the coming to the Presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1932 Presidential election.

Republican Governors Vs Democratic Governors: The Future Battles!

As one looks ahead to future political battles, one cannot ignore the growing role of Republican governors being challenged by Democratic governors, usually a “fraternity” in which the members share a “camaraderie”, but not so in 2023, 2024, and beyond!

A number of former or sitting Republican governors are seen as likely to seek the Presidency, and even those who are not seeking to “move up” are engaged in “culture wars”.

Meanwhile, Democratic governors seem unlikely to enter the Presidential race for 2024, standing by while President Joe Biden moves to run for a second term, but they are “backups” in case the situation changes, and are certainly to be seen as part of the long term future of the Democratic Party, even more than sitting members of the US Senate.

The list of Republican governors includes Ron DeSantis of Florida; Greg Abbott of Texas; Kristi Noem of South Dakota; Glenn Youngkin of Virginia; Brian Kemp of Georgia; Chris Sununu of New Hampshire; and former Governors Larry Hogan of Maryland and Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas.

The Democratic list of the Governorships has potential future Presidential contenders, including Gavin Newsom of California; J. B. Pritzker of Illinois; Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan; Jared Polis of Colorado; Jay Inslee of Washington; Josh Shapiro of Pennsylvania; Wes Moore of Maryland; Phil Murphy of New Jersey; Andy Beshear of Kentucky; and Roy Cooper of North Carolina.

Never have we had so many state governors seen as potential Presidential contenders, with the reminder that in the past 100 years, we have had the following Presidents who were state governors: Calvin Coolidge, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush.

Two Year Anniversary Of Joe Biden Presidency: Should He Run For Second Term?

Today at 12 Noon marks the two year anniversary of the Joe Biden Presidency!

Considering the difficult political circumstances, of an evenly divided Senate for only the fourth time in American history, and a five seat margin in the House of Representatives, Joe Biden accomplished a great deal in his first two years in office.

From a progressive view, he was the most successful in his first two years domestically than any President since Lyndon B. Johnson in the 1960s with his “Great Society” legislation, which was far greater, but with a massive margin of his party in control of both the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Biden accomplished more than Democrats in the Presidency after Johnson, including Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and even Barack Obama, after their first two years in the Oval Office!

Foreign policy has been difficult, as it always is, but Biden’s strong support of Ukraine in its war with Russia, and backed by NATO, has been a very strong example of his promotion of democracy against totalitarianism, reminiscent of Franklin D. Roosevelt coming to the aid of Great Britain in 1940-1941, before America’s entrance into World War II.

Having said all the above, the question now is should Joe Biden, having reached the age of 80 precisely two months ago, run for a second term, and would he win a second term?

This author and blogger has always had great and warm feelings toward Joe Biden, going back to when he gravitated toward Biden as, in my mind, the replacement in commitment and personality traits of Hubert Humphrey, who was this author’s original political “hero”!

I wish that Biden had been able to run for President in 2016, but his son Beau’s death prevented that, as I believe he would have won the nomination, and would have defeated Donald Trump, and saved America from the nightmare four years of horrendous policies and criminal actions.

Hillary Clinton had too many barriers, including controversies surrounding her and her husband, along with simply being the first woman nominee for President. Of course, Hillary Clinton still won the national popular vote by 2.85 million, and only lost because of Russian collusion with Trump that threw the Electoral College vote to him in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. Even a Republican controlled Senate committee came to that conclusion, despite the continued lying and deception that continues unabated to the present.

But the present is the issue, and this author and blogger sincerely believes that while Joe Biden would win a second term, against Donald Trump or anyone else on the horizon, that for the future of the Presidency and of Joe Biden’s own lifespan, that he should announce that he will retire.

It would make him a “lameduck President”, but freed from politics of his own ego, he could be seen as a statesman, helping to bring the future of the nation toward a Democratic Party successor, who would pursue his principles, goals, and common decency and compassion!

We need a future President who has the character traits of Joe Biden, as we do not want to promote selfishness, greed, nastiness, and lack of compassion and common decency, which too many Republicans who plan to run for President, possess as their basic character traits!

This way, Joe Biden can leave office at age 82, with head held high, having accomplished a decent record under difficult circumstances, having assisted for his own succession. And he can have peace of mind, planning his own Presidential Library and Museum, writing his own memoirs, and enjoying his wife, Dr Jill Biden, and his family in a relaxed, well deserved retirement, which is likely to lead to a longer life, than having the stress of another four years in office!

He should not join the list of Presidents who either died in office or had very short retirements, such individuals as Woodrow Wilson, Calvin Coolidge, and Lyndon B. Johnson!

So, President Biden, do what is best for you and for the nation you have served so well, and announce your decision to leave office two years from today, having insured the succession of a Democratic President who will carry on with your commitment to decency, fairness, and compassion!

The Historic Nature Of March 4 In Presidential History

March 4 is an historic date in Presidential history, as it was the Inauguration Day for every President through the first Inauguration of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933.

It also was the beginning of the government under the Constitution in 1789, as Congress met for the first time.

The inauguration date was changed late in 1933 by the 20th Amendment, and January 20 became the new Inauguration Day, starting in 1937.

Every Inauguration Day was the day for every President except George Washington at the first inauguration, which was delayed to April 30, 1789 by Washington’s delay in arriving to New York; and also the succession to the Presidency of John Tyler in 1841, Millard Fillmore in 1850, Andrew Johnson in 1865, Chester Alan Arthur in 1881, Theodore Roosevelt first term in 1901, and Calvin Coolidge first term in 1923.

The most historic March 4 inaugurations are considered to be Thomas Jefferson in 1801, Andrew Jackson in 1829, Abraham Lincoln both in 1861 and 1865, Woodrow Wilson in 1913, and Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933, and Lincoln’s Second Inauguration and FDR’s First Inauguration are considered to have been the times of the two greatest Inaugural Addresses!

The Presidency And Native Americans

A recent article on History News Network has rated Presidents on “Integrity and Humanity in Dealing with Native American Nations”, a significant analysis of how the “original” Americans have been treated by American government.

It is not a positive picture overall, and we have had Presidents who were particularly horrid in their treatment of native Americans, and others who had a more open minded and considerate reaction to the plight of native Americans.

The list of Presidents who are seen as villains includes:

Thomas Jefferson
Andrew Jackson
Martin Van Buren
Andrew Johnson
James Garfield
Theodore Roosevelt
Donald Trump

The list of Presidents who are seen as reformers includes:

John Quincy Adams
Calvin Coolidge
Herbert Hoover
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Harry Truman
Lyndon B. Johnson
Richard Nixon
Gerald Ford
Bill Clinton
Barack Obama

Overall, sadly, native Americans were treated with violence, disrespect and paternalism, with their lands stolen, and forced out of their ancestral lands!

The Afghanistan Crisis Likely Insures A One Term Joe Biden Presidency

Only about one of every three Presidents historically (14 of 44) through Inauguration Day 2021 has served two terms:

George Washington
Thomas Jefferson
James Madison
James Monroe
Andrew Jackson
Ulysses S. Grant
Grover Cleveland
Woodrow Wilson
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Ronald Reagan
Bill Clinton
George W. Bush
Barack Obama

Additionally, 7 others served more than one term, but not two complete terms:

Abraham Lincoln
William McKinley
Theodore Roosevelt
Calvin Coolidge
Harry Truman
Lyndon B. Johnson
Richard Nixon

And only Lincoln, McKinley, and Nixon were actually elected to two terms, so a total of 17 Presidents elected twice, while TR, Coolidge, Truman, and Johnson succeeded after deaths of their predecessor, and were only elected once to the Presidency.

So a total of 21 Presidents served more than four years, although Lincoln and McKinley for just a few months more, and Coolidge, Johnson and Nixon only months more than a year. So only TR and Truman were very close to two complete terms. Ultimately, 16 out of 44 basically served two terms.

Now we can add Joe Biden to the list of those who will not serve two terms or even be elected a second time, as with the Afghanistan debacle, it seems certain that he will not run again in 2024!

Presidents And The Month Of August

Presidents and the month of August have quite a history, with nine Presidents connected to the month.

Five Presidents were born in August:

August 4, 1961–Barack Obama
August 10, 1874–Herbert Hoover
August 19, 1946–Bill Clinton
August 20, 1833–Benjamin Harrison
August 27, 1908–Lyndon B. Johnson

One President died in August:

Warren G. Harding–August 2, 1923

One President resigned in August:

Richard Nixon–August 9, 1974

Two Presidents succeeded to the Presidency in August:

Calvin Coolidge–August 2, 1923
Gerald Ford–August 9, 1974