December 26th, 2008
02:31 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama, Clinton top the list of most-admired people in the world

President-elect Obama and Secretary of State designate Hillary Clinton topped a new poll of most admired people.
President-elect Obama and Secretary of State designate Hillary Clinton topped a new poll of most admired people.

(CNN) -- For the first time in over a half century, a president-elect has topped Gallup’s poll of the nation’s most admired man.

Thirty-two percent of Americans surveyed in the new USA Today/Gallup poll said Barack Obama was the man they most admired — a better showing than either former Presidents George H.W. Bush or Bill Clinton ever achieved.

The last president-elect to top the list was Dwight Eisenhower, in 1952.

President Bush, who was named the most-admired man by 39 percent of those polled shortly after September 11, falls to a distant second, at 5 percent — the first time since his election that he has not topped the poll.

The nation’s most-admired woman for the seventh-straight year is Obama’s secretary of state-designate, Hillary Clinton, named by one in five Americans. Former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, a newcomer to the list, is second with 11 percent.

Rounding out the list of most-admired women living today are Oprah Winfrey in the third-place spot, current Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in fourth place, and future first lady Michelle Obama, in fifth place with 3 percent.

The survey was conducted December 12-14, and is based on interviews with 1,008 Americans. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percent.

soundoff (71 Responses)
  1. Janet in Reno

    oh please – this must be a joke. this woman is a total airhead – how she even got to be governor of the largest state with the LEAST populace remains a total mystery. this woman can't even put a sentence together – all fluff – no substance.

    December 26, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  2. Glenn in California

    Palin is 2nd? What a joke. What is it about her that's admired? That she can see Russia from her house?

    December 26, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  3. chuck


    December 26, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  4. Richard Rohde

    At what point did the libercrats start calling for Bush/Cheney's impreachent? Was it before he was sworn in? I do belived it was. Time to start on Hussein, anyone who thinks he, a senator from Illinois, and and two time endorser of Blago, had nothing to do with Blago time to buy swampland in Arizona. IMPEACH OBAMA. Biden should go to jail for saying the the Hussein stimulus bill will not contain earmarks, while Dingy Harry Reid is already bragging to the Nevada newspapers about the 1 billion dollars he is getting for them. Which is lying Hair Plug or Dingy. One of them is, actually probably both are.

    December 26, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  5. earle,florida

    Wow, we've raised the bar for our school's education standard, while simultaneously raising the bar for our politcians,...this certainly leaves the "Hope Door" open for our future high school drop-outs. I applaud you USA Today/Gallup poll. You to, have grown to show the acheivments of higher education, and ethics for the public,...?

    December 26, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  6. Greg

    Can any of you 40% please tell me what Barry has done to earn your admiration?

    December 26, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  7. Ray from CA

    Why do people like Sarah Palin so much?!!?!?

    December 26, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  8. chuck


    December 26, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |

    I admire Hilary Clinton first. Top rate inteligent diplomatic and more than qualified to run this country. I think she should have been times woman/ man of the year. Obama ran a good solid campain my hats off to him.

    December 26, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |





    December 26, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  11. Bobby

    That shows you how bad off the world is today. God help us!

    December 26, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  12. bk

    Glenn in California
    Palin has achieved more for her state than Obama ever did for Illinois. She has done for the people and Obama has never done anything, but run his mouth.

    December 26, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  13. Ann

    YES for Hillary... and a big NO for Obama.

    What is it about him to be admired? a product of the Chicago politics who is using people and next denounces and rejects them (see grandma, Rev. Wright, Ayers, Rezko, Blagojevich..)

    December 26, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  14. Kevin B

    Greg-The reason for the admiration is that with help of the American electorate, he took down the incompetent corrupt republican fear and slime machine.

    For that reason alone the people are greatful. The current administration has set the bar so low, that will be easy for PE Obamato look good when he takes office

    December 26, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  15. Swampy

    @Richard Rohde:

    AS always, your insightful political analysis leaves me in awe; how is it that you can put English words together and still have your posts read as if they were written in Klingon? All that time living in your mom's basement has really paid off.

    December 26, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  16. Rick

    It is sad times we are living in when Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton top the lists of "most admired". Very sad times indeed.

    December 26, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  17. Independent for Obama

    Greg December 26th, 2008 3:26 pm ET

    Can any of you 40% please tell me what Barry has done to earn your admiration?
    Well Greg, for starters I really admire the fact that he wouldn't make fun of your lack of math skills.

    December 26, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  18. JM

    Gov. Palin is a self made woman was elected Mayor twice, served on the Alaska Gas and Oil Comission and was elected Governor of a state while raising five children by the age of 44. She didn't trade on daddy's or her husband's name or money unlike others on this list. What have you ever done? I suspect not much. Oh and FYI I'm a self-made female Vice-President of a successful de novo bank, with a Master's degree, currently working on my Phd. I didn't trade on daddy's name since we were poor and it wouldn't have gotten my anywhere. Nor did I marry into my position since I am single. Unlike your prescious HIllary.

    December 26, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  19. bk

    Palin never said she could see Russia from her house. That was a SNL skit and the media including CNN has had to apogise for saying things that were not true about Palin. She should sue the networks for trying to destroy her. It seems that every woman that runs for anything the media tries to make them look dumb, just like they did Clinton. Its time to stop this.

    December 26, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  20. Linda32

    Greg, I admire the way Obama ran his campaign and how he has managed his time post-election. If you open your eyes you will see how hard Obama is working to make sure our country does not go into depression. Take your blinders offf.

    December 26, 2008 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  21. Brenda C

    Even MSNBC which is in love with obama reported it like it should have been reported. Just hated to say something good about Bush uh C-ult N-ews N-ow ?

    Americans admire Obama most, poll finds
    Bush, McCain follow; Hillary Clinton tops Palin, Winfrey among women

    What's Sarah done? Well what has obama done but run and hide from scandal after scandal?

    December 26, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  22. sandee in Portland

    How in the world can you have the most admired (Obama) in the same group as Palin? I can understand admiring Obama just because he's an intelligent human being who has been elected as our next president, but what is Palin admired for.....her stupidity or her lack of ethics?

    December 26, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  23. Linda in MS

    Yes, Greg, we could tell you why we admire Mr. Obama so much, but you and Richard Rohde are probably too stupid and mean-spirited to ever understand. If either of you can read something other than the comics and the sports page, read "The Audacity of Hope" by Barack Obama. You just might get some insight. By the way, Richard, Hussien means something very positive in arabic, so I am glad you are using his wonderful middle name. It sure is better than "Dick".

    December 26, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  24. rachel

    Good! go Barack and Hillary, I was a Hillary girl through the primaries, ended up voting for barack with a heavy heart. I think his heart is in the right place and maybe he will get the job done, meanwhile Hillary is quietly building a powerful state department starting with special envoys for the world's hot spots.(something the bush adminstration practically did away with.)

    December 26, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  25. R

    Hillary being the most admired woman for 7 years straight is making a statement that people like her. I'm sure by next year, Palin will be nowhere near this list.

    December 26, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
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