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Between geography, gerrymandering, and the fact that in recent times if a president doesn't unilaterally fix everything right away (which they can't do) their entire party gets the blame regardless of the circumstances (e.g., the routine use of the Senate filibuster making it hard for much of anything to get done), modern presidents are almost guaranteed to see their party lose control of one or both houses of Congress in retaliation by wishy-washy voters. That means we'll probably never see one ever get as high on a chart like this as FDR, LBJ, and several of our earliest presidents have done. For presidents in the past 40 years, Obama and Clinton ranked decently in the first half of their first terms, but outside of that it looks like everyone from Reagan to Biden all ranked in the bottom half.

If I may go off on a mostly-related tangent here, IMO, U.S. presidents are more and important and powerful than they should be, yet paradoxically are deemed more powerful than they actually are. What I mean is that executive presidents (i.e., ones that exercise actual power), not just in the U.S. but around the world, have a tendency to see their office grow in power well beyond what might have been originally intended, and nations with presidential systems far too often descend into autocracy. However, while the office of president in the U.S. may have had its power grow beyond its original constitutional limits, their power is not currently limitless, and there's a lot they can't do without congressional approval.



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