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Obama bests Trump as Most Admired Man in 2016

US President Barrack Obama has emerged as the most admired man in 2016 beating President-elect Donald Trump, a Gallup poll revealed on Wednesday.

According to the poll, twenty-two percent named Obama in response to the open-ended question. President-elect Donald Trump was second at 15 percent.

This is Obama’s ninth consecutive win, but the seven-percentage-point margin this year is his narrowest victory yet. Since 1946, Gallup has asked Americans to name the man, living anywhere in the world, whom they admire most.

The distinction is typically won by incumbent presidents — in the 70 times Gallup has asked the question, the president has won 58 times.

The twelve exceptions were mostly times when the sitting president was unpopular, including 2008 when Americans named President-elect Obama over President George W. Bush.


Obama and Dwight Eisenhower in 1952 are the only presidents-elect to win the distinction. Eisenhower finished first twelve times, more than any other man in history.  Obama is now second all-time with nine first-place finishes.

Obama’s win over Trump is largely a result of earning more mentions among Democrats than Trump receives from Republicans.

Fifty percent of Democrats named Obama as most admired, compared with 34% of Republicans choosing Trump.

The remainder of this year’s top ten most admired man list includes Pope Francis, Senator Bernie Sanders, the Reverand Billy Graham, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the Dalai Lama, former President Bill Clinton, businessman and philanthropist Bill Gates, and Vice President-elect Mike Pence.

Pence is the only newcomer among the top 10 men this year. Trump has finished in the top 10 five prior times — in 1988, 1989, 1990, 2011 and 2015.

‘Hillary Clinton is the most admired woman’ 

Hillary Clinton was named the most admired woman for the 15th consecutive year and 21st time overall.

Clinton made the top 10 for a 25th time and Gates for a 17th. Former President George W. Bush finished outside the top 10 for the first time since he was elected in 2000.

Clinton has topped the list every year since her initial win in 1993 as first lady, except 1995 and 1996 (when she finished behind Mother Teresa) and 2001 (behind Laura Bush).


First lady Michelle Obama finished second on the Most Admired Woman list this year tied with 2012 as her best finish.

The remainder of the top 10 most admired women include German Chancellor Angela Merkel, talk-show hosts Oprah Winfrey and Ellen DeGeneres, Queen Elizabeth of England, Malala Yousafzai, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.

Clinton was the top choice among Democrats, with 26% naming her followed by Michelle Obama at 18%.

There was no consensus choice among Republicans as 5% named Queen Elizabeth, 4% each named Clinton and DeGeneres, and 3% each named Rice and Palin.

Implication for Obama and Clinton

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have been the most admired man and woman every year since 2008. However, their future status as most admired is uncertain  as both move into the post-political phase of their careers

Trump may be the favorite to win the distinction next year given the prominence of incumbent presidents if he does not have low job approval ratings in December 2017.

Obama could still be featured in the top 10 for many years as many ex-presidents have enjoyed long runs on the most admired man list after leaving office.

Clinton has a better chance of staying most admired woman based on history, as former first ladies have won the title more than any other role — 35 times in the 67 years the question has been asked.

Clinton may also be advantaged in the future because she will be in a less overt political role. Her highest favorable ratings to date came when she was first lady and secretary of state, while they fell significantly during her two presidential campaigns.

The results for the poll are based on telephone interviews conducted with a random sample of 1,028 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all fifty U.S. states, with the margin of sampling error is 4 percentage points.



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