Obama received high marks for “being her own woman” and “value to the president.”
It’s no secret that Michelle Obama is an outstanding first lady.
Now there are poll numbers to prove it. The Chicago-native is ranked in the top five of first ladies, coming in fifth place, just ahead of Hillary Clinton, who is sixth, according to a survey of historians that was released Saturday, Reuters reports.
The poll is based on interviews with 242 historians, political scientists and other scholars questioned from Oct. 10 to Nov. 25 by mail and online.
The Siena College survey has been conducted five times since 1982. Roosevelt has come out on top each time.
Clinton is seen as the former first lady with the most presidential potential.
Eleanor Roosevelt, whose husband, Franklin, served as president from 1933 to 1945, has ranked No. 1 each of the five times the survey has been conducted by Siena College Research Institute since 1982, the report says.
This year, Roosevelt was followed by Abigail Adams, Jacqueline Kennedy, Dolly Madison, Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton.
The survey asked 242 historians and political scientists to rate 38 presidents’ wives in 10 categories, including “courage,” “integrity,” “value to the country” and “accomplishments,” the report says.
Obama won high marks in the categories of “being her own woman” and “value to the president.” She scored low in her capacity of “being the White House steward.” Whatever!
Historians are unclear about just when use of the title became common, but it is an unofficial and potentially powerful role.
Rounding out the top 10 after Clinton were Lady Bird Johnson, Betty Ford, Martha Washington and Rosalynn Carter.
This year’s poll is being released alongside C-SPAN’s “First Ladies” TV series.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.