Most Admired Man

Trump, Obama Tie for Most Admired Man of 2019

Former First Lady Michelle Obama came in first for women, according to the Gallup poll

NBCUniversal, Inc.

Finally some agreement over Barack Obama and Donald Trump: The former and current presidents tied as the most admired man of the year, according to a Gallup poll.

This is Barack Obama’s 12th time at the top and the first for Trump. Each man was chosen by 18% of U.S. adults. 

Former First Lady Michelle Obama took the lead spot for women for the second year in a row.

But if the men share the top place, the picks were divided sharply along party lines, according to Gallup. Among Democrats, 41% picked Obama, while 45% of Republicans named Trump, with few of either party breaking ranks. Independents were split about equally between them.

Gallup has been asking Americans to name their most admired man and woman anywhere in the world. This year’s results are based on a poll conducted from Dec. 2 to Dec. 15.

No other man earned more than 2% of the votes. Other first choices:

  • Former President Jimmy Carter
  • Businessman Elon Musk
  • Philanthropist and Microsoft founder Bill Gates
  • Pope Francis
  • Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders
  • Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff of California
  • The Dalai Lama
  • Investor Warren Buffett

The incumbent president has typically been Americans’ choice for most admired man, winning the pick in 58 of the 72 prior Gallup polls. When he is not chosen, it is usually because he is unpopular as was the case for Trump in 2017 with a 36% approval rating and in 2018 with a 40% rating, Gallup noted. Trump is now more popular with a 45% job approval rating.

Michelle Obama is the sixth former first lady to win, joining Eleanor Roosevelt, Jacqueline Kennedy, Mamie Eisenhower, Betty Ford and Hillary Clinton. First Lady Melania Trump finished second this year.

Also in the top 10 for women:

  • Britain's Queen Elizabeth II
  • House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
  • Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
  • Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren
  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel
  • Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley

The margin of sampling error was plus or minus 4 percentage points.

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