Story by: Adrian Blair
Top 5 Presidents
While the 2016 Presidential Election pits two of the most questionable presidential candidates in American history against each other, The Hyphen takes a look back at five of the most impactful presidents in our nation’s history.
- Franklin D. Roosevelt (1932-1945) Democrat
A lot of historians undervalue Roosevelt, and don’t give him credit where he’s due. FDR was the most battle-tested president in our history, and it’s not even close. Roosevelt was elected in 1932 during the height of The Great Depression, which was the worst economic crisis in American history. Slowly but surely, by the end of the 1930’s, Roosevelt helped the U.S. economy get back onto its feet…just in time to stop Adolph Hitler and enter in the second World War. And to think, Roosevelt did all of this in a wheelchair. Franklin D. Roosevelt is an American hero and arguably the best president in our history.
2.) Abraham Lincoln (1860-1865) National Union Party
“Honest Abe”, as Lincoln was dubbed, was just that: a real class act. Lincoln led the Union to victory that ended the Civil War and banned slavery, all in his four and a half short years as president. Had Lincoln served two full, complete terms, who knows what he could’ve accomplished. And on top of that, what other president rocked the beard?
3.) Thomas Jefferson (1800-1808) Democratic-Republican
Jefferson was a terrific scholar and a main contributor to the writing of the Declaration of Independence. In 1803, Jefferson engineered the Louisiana Purchase from France, expanding the United States from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Northwest. I really think if Thomas Jefferson wasn’t a slave owner, he’s the best to ever roam the White House halls. It’s an honor to live in a town and go to a school that dons his name.
4.) Theodore Roosevelt (1901-1908) Progressive Party
Franklin D.’s fifth cousin, “Teddy” was a very kind and observant president. He started developing wildlife refuges and created National Parks all over the country. Teddy also fixed a lot of social problems caused by the Industrial Revolution by cleaning up streets of big cities, and creating immigrant safety programs that Americans still use today. Whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican, you can agree Teddy Roosevelt earned his place on Mount Rushmore.
5.) Ronald Reagan (1980-1988) Republican
If Donald Trump were to take notes on any former Republican president, it would have to be Reagan. “Ronnie” wasn’t a career politician, and really used it to his advantage. Reagan was able to keep his sanity when dealing with the Soviet Union in the latter stages of the Cold War. Unlike his predecessors (Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter), Reagan was aggressive and very determined to stop all nuclear threats toward the United States. And on top of all that, how many presidents survived an attempted assassination? Reagan did at the age of 70 in 1981, which just goes against the laws of nature.