Hillary Clinton Is "Most Admired" Woman by Americans

Reports a Gallup poll -- which also reports that a whopping 9% of respondents so labeled her (and her favorability-unfavorability rating is 36%-61%).

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

The Gallup summaries are here (9% say they admire her most, above any other woman), and here (36% favorable rating, 61% unfavorable). The first summary mentions the limitations of the survey:

The 9% who name Clinton is the lowest percentage she has received since 2002, when 7% named her in another close first-place finish. Clinton won the title this year in the same poll she registered a personal low favorable rating. This indicates she remains top of mind for enough people who like her to be named more than any other woman in response to the open-ended question, finishing ahead of some women who may be better liked overall but are not as prominent in people's minds.

But this makes me wonder about the significance of the "most admired" label in the first place—and makes me wonder how many people who hear just the headline soundbite ("Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton Retain Most Admired Titles") might end up getting quite the wrong impression.

Another way of noting this: Donald Trump is listed as the second-most-admired person in the country—or you can say the most-admired current political leader (thus excluding Barack Obama, who beats Trump by 3%). But given that only 14% of American voters say they most admire him, and his favorable-unfavorable rating is at 38%-56%, would it be particularly enlightening to label him as "Most Admired Current Political Leader"?

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  1. And the “polls” said she’d win in a landslide. So much for the validity of polls.

    1. i flipped two heads in a row, proving that coin flips arent 50/50.

    2. Yeah. How could anyone have been so stupid as to think she would get more votes than Trump?

      1. How can any American be so stupid as to not understand that US Presidential elections don’t work that way?

        1. How can anyone be so stupid as to read my comment and think it means I don’t understand how Presidential elections work?

          1. um, bernard, that’s the extremely clear implication of your post. Someone said she thought she’d win in a landslide. You implied it was not stupid to think she would get more votes than Trump.

            So either you said what you’re denying, or your post was absolutely irrelevant and a complete waste of everyone’s time

            1. @Careless ? You’re incorrect. The “polls” to which AARGH63 referenced were nationwide surveys that did’t adjust the results to match their share of the electoral college. Put another way: they polled the popular vote. In that regard, they were spot on since Hillary’s won within the margin of error. AARGH63 equivocated them with electoral college specific polls (by mentioning that Trump won), and Bernard called him out on it.

              1. Joe.. you’re just wrong. The Nate silver projection, as an example, broke down estimates state by state and assumed electoral votes.

                1. @JesseAZ ? You are pulling up one poll to prove you’re point. The polls don’t do that. Here’s a link to Gallup explaining this.

                2. @JesseAZ

                  The Nate Silver projection, as an example, did not predict a Clinton landslide. In fact, he gave Trump a 1 in 3 chance of winning, which is a decent chance. He was much closer to the correct result than many other pollsters or aggregators.

            2. No. It’s not the clear implication at all. And even if you read it as hinting at that, Matthew’s comment is insulting and uncalled for.

              I’ve posted a lot here, and hadd exchanges with him on a number of topics. For him to call me stupid because he concludes, based on subtle and incorrect reading, that I don’t understand the EC – a basic and much discussed aspect of our election system – is just plain ridiculous.

              Besides, many polls did not go state by state. I was in fact referring to the popular vote polls, because that’s what many restrict themselves to and that’s what gets reported even about ths e that don’t. .

              1. Careless,

                Here is what I wrote,

                How could anyone have been so stupid as to think she would get more votes than Trump?

                Do you really believe I meant electoral votes? Of course I meant popular votes, and she did get more. That’s it. Any other reading is nonsense.

        2. As stupid as a commentor that thinks Presidential Elections are decided by popular vote.

      2. How can anyone be so incompetent as to spend loads of money getting out millions of votes in deep blue states, and lose by a few thousand in the states that mattered.

        1. i didn’t do that. Joe’s answer is a good one. Overconfidence, overreach.

        2. Decent people residing in modern, successful communities underestimated the hold of bigotry and backwardness on the depleted human residue of our can’t-keep-up backwaters.

          The educated, accomplished people learned this one the hard way.

          1. Goddamn, Kirkland, you continue to mine the depths of stupidity here.

            1. Disaffected, downscale yahoos, religious kooks, and bigots of various intensities are the foundation of the current conservative-Republican and Trump electoral coalitions. Why not enjoy the recent gains for medieval social policies and predatory economics without making yourself appear daft by denying the essential elements of the victory?+

            2. I’ve been reading the Rev’s comments in the VC for 9 years, since before his ordination as a minister in the Church of Atheism, mostly for the comedic content. Since the election of our first half-white, half-Muslim, half-Commie president, however, he’s pretty much gone off the rails, and now the comedy is totally gone as well as any trace of content. It’s insults all the way down now.

              1. Get an education. Learn the meaning of atheism.

                Carry on, clinger. And do it here. Your reference is ‘the first half-white, half-Muslim, half-Commie president’ is an apt fit at an all-white, all-male, movement conservative blog.

          2. Decent people residing in modern, successful communities underestimated the hold of bigotry and backwardness on the depleted human residue of our can’t-keep-up backwaters.

            Somehow the fact that many of those same areas voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012 was lost on Revered Arthur L. Dumbshit here.

            1. Naw, RAK (aka Royal Arse Kisser) prefers Progressive Plantations with Elitist Masters and Uncle Tom Overseers controlling the Proletariat Serfs. Especially those that have been controlled by Progressive Democrats for decades like Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore, et.al. Easy to see if one looks at the last Presidential electoral map where the clumping of blue counties are centered around said Democrat controlled Progressive Plantations. They are almost like the old Roman cities with their circuses and bread handouts.

      3. If the popular vote won the election it’s not out of the question that Trump could have pulled that off too.

        A week before the election the New Yorker was wondering why Trump was wasting his time campaigning in Michigan and Wisconsin. A savvy candidate would be spending their time and ad buys in California and New York where they could rack up more votes. Hillary had that figured out so she won California by 4.3 million votes rather than waste her time in Wisconsin where the entire presidential vote for both candidates was only 2.7 million.

        1. Not out of the question, but pretty unlikely, I think.

          How much time did Hilary spend in Texas and the South? If Trump could have picked up margin in CA, then maybe Clinton could have picked up in TX, which had a much lower voter turnout – 51.6% – than CA – 56.7%.

          Sure, the different strategy called for by a popular vote system would have produced different numbers, but the actual popular vote outcome is a reasonable, if imperfect, indicator of what it would have been.

          1. No, not really: It isn’t just the candidates who would change their behavior under a popular vote system. The voters would, too. Minority votes in states sure to go one way or another would no longer be pointless, a Republican vote in California would count as much as one in Michigan.

            It would be a whole new game, there’s no telling how the dynamics would change.

            But one thing we can reasonably guess: A candidate who ran a foolish campaign, (Bouncing the rubble in states they were guaranteed to win while neglecting competative states.) under one system would probably do it under another.

    3. You’re showing your ignorance.

      The “polls” you are talking about are major nationwide ones that don’t factor in electoral votes. Because of that, they are more comparable to the popular vote. They were quite accurate in that regard because Hillary won the popular vote (48.2% to 46.1%). Out of ten polls, seven were correctly predicted that within the margin of error. Of the three that weren’t, one was in favor of Trump while the other two were in favor of Hillary. (Note that that I didn’t count a eleventh poll because the margin of error was already adjusted for weighting.)

      Additionally, the major statewide polls were just as correct as the nationwide ones even though they had a different focus. All seven polls in Florida, all six in Pennsylvania, all six in North Carolina, all five in Georgia, all four in Arizona, all four in Ohio, all three in Iowa, and two of five in Michigan were within the margin of error or better for Trump. The only state he won which wasn’t forecasted as a toss-up was Wisconsin; all four polls were in favor of Hillary beyond the margin of error.

      Don’t discredit the polls; they have been correct the whole time.

      1. When nearly every poll has Hillary +3 yet she loses by -1 or -2 I’m states that mattered… It shows a polling bias. A true estimation that was accurate would have margin swings on both sides of the actual results, not all on one side. By having all polls and up on the same side as a margin of error, it is an implication of a formal bias.

        1. A point I make from time to time at 538: You can’t really defend a whole bunch of polls as unbiased because they’re within the margin of error of the true result, if they were all wrong in the same direction! That’s typical of systemic bias, not sampling error.

        2. @JesseAZ ? I’ve worked on a few successful senatorial campaigns, and that’s not how polls work. Let’s look at Pennsylvania as an example. You might remember that Trump won the state with a 0.7% spread. Looking at the polls, you’d probably think that they were biased in favor of Clinton; however, you’d be wrong. Morning Call predicted Clinton by +4% but it could swing of 5.5% in either direction. To a smart analyst, that means the state could go from Trump +1.5% to Clinton +9.5%. With Monmouth, they likewise said it could go from Trump +0.9% to Clinton +8.9%. The Gravis and Harper polls gave Trump even better numbers.

          Leading up to and on election night, the polls were correct (with the sole exception of Wisconsin). The issue of inaccuracy was with the talking heads. Very few of them could admit that Trump stood a legitimate chance. I’m going to leave you with the same thing I said earlier: don’t dismiss the polls.

          1. So the morning call poll had clinton +4 with a +/- of 5.5? An error spread of 11? And you think that is legiitimate? No, thats a joke.

            1. At least it was a fair joke.

          2. One issue that appears to be common with polls is the “weight” given to one party over another. They use best guesstimate and often overweight for one side.

  2. would it be particularly enlightening to label him as “Most Admired Current Political Leader”?

    no, because that wasnt what people were polled on. if it had been, then the answer would be yes.

  3. The point is well taken that the net positive is the appropriate score. I argued this on another site when an HRC supporter argued that /of course/ she was the best Democratic candidate because she was the most popular woman in America, based on something like the 9% on the poll here. (I wrote it as one of the 65.8 million who voted for her, but not one who did it happily).

    The best it could mean, for her, if people actually voted like that, would be that she would make it to the second round. Then, with her negatives she’d be unlikely to raise her percentage to above 36%, and she’d be swamped by a candidate not many people disliked..

  4. Not most admired, net, I guess. Had the largest number of people citing her as the person they most admired.

  5. The current Tea Party/redneck/pro-Trump view of the world is to fervently, passionately decry the fatally flawed Mueller Investigation of “collusion” with the Russians that followed hot on the heals of a fatally flawed, profoundly pro-forma, imitation investigation of the Hillary emails. The FBI essentially exonerated Hillary before they even started, perhaps because an embarrassingly large number of agents and DOJ lawyers involved had deep connections to Clinton and her Democrat allies.

    Interestingly, a battle over the validity of two documents erupted early in all of this. The first purported to be Russian-government origin document alleging that Loretta Lynch’s DOJ had emailed a man named Leonard Bernardo at the Soros Open Society Foundation to assure Clintonites that the FBI would not aggressively investigate the email thing. The mainstream media promptly forgot all about that document (which they had barely mentioned in the first place!)

    Comey’s FBI swiftly and decisively declared this already-ignored document was a hoax. Then along comes a dossier which claims all sorts of weird behavior by the Trump team. This dossier is taken much, much more seriously, may have even been the basis for the unmasking warrant that politicized NSA wiretap intercepts. The MM triumphs the dossier and writes a thousand headlines multiplying and reinforcing its every nuance!

    Now we learn that team Clinton and the DNC appear to have funded and sourced the dossier!

    1. “Now we learn that team Clinton and the DNC appear to have funded and sourced the dossier!”

      If this was true, they would have used it during the campaign. Either directly, or via leaks. But it didn’t surface until afterwards.

      1. It was used during the campaign, by the Obama administration to get a warrant to spy on the opposing campaign.

        1. As no one of your stature would ever repeat an unconfirmed rumor without labelling it as such, I’m sure that you have proof to back up your allegation. 😉

            1. First, it’s pretty comical for someone to be pro-Trump and cite CNN. That’s just amazing.

              Second, Comey said that the dossier was full of “salacious and unverified” allegations against Trump. It’s real hard to believe that such a document played an important part in getting a FISA warrant. However, it’s very reasonable to assume that the FBI was already aware of the alleged conspiracy because of a drunken disclosure by the coffeeboy to the Aussies. That would make good sense given that the dossier hadn’t been written at the time.

              1. They didn’t get to be pro-Trump based on education, character, and insight.

              2. First, it’s pretty comical for someone to be pro-Trump and cite CNN. That’s just amazing

                It’s called, “using the enemy’s weapons against them.”

        2. Names of couples to google for info on how the FBI “investigated” Hillary would be: Nellie and Robert Ohr, or Peter Strozk and Lisa Page. Nellie and Robert were paranoid about using email to communicate because they knew how vulnerable that is around their employers, so they used ham radio. Ohr did not recuse himself from the Hillary email investigation although spouse Lisa worked for Fussion GPS, which was the conduit for the dossier.

          Strozk sent emails to girl friend Lisa Page that bear on these matters. Andrew McCabe didn’t recuse himself although his wife received $700K from Clinton campaign for her own political use.

          A.G. Jeff Sessions, being of faint heart compared to Democrats, did famously recuse himself. Sessions also screwed up in Alabama, resulting ultimately in the Democrats winning his former Senate seat.

          About the FBI, they can lie to you all day long during an interrogation trying to spook you into an admission, but if you lie to them or even get something wrong in the slightest way, they make you a criminal pronto.

          When Trump delivers the State of the Union on Jan. 30th, I expect him to have quite a lot to say about the malfeasance running rampant at the FBI. Since the MM will not tell the public anything about this scandal unless they can spin their tropes hard to the defense of Clinton, Obama, and their stooges, I expect the president will go over their heads and directly provide teachings for the public enlightenment.

          1. Page and Strzok, of course, were also ‘paranoid’; They used burner phones to discuss the Clinton investigation. Probably why Strzok is now in HR, instead of just being moved to a different investigation.

            1. Notice how in all the Obama administration controversies, agencies that made “mistakes” like the ATF in the Fast and Furious flap or the IRS in the Tea Party persecution or now the FBI are allowed to investigate themselves. Usually assurances of immunity are spread around generously during interviews, questions are carefully limited, and nobody is actually fired.
              Lowest level people possible take all blame for “mistakes.” Even they are only pretend punished. Warning: immunity promises may be partial and not that durable.

              Two new developments today. The New York state A.G. promises to prosecute under state law anybody Trump pardons. Now there is an up and coming Democrat on the make! Also yesterday Trump tweeted despairingly about the cold spell gripping the nation in relation to alleged global warming. Immediately a graphic was spread around the networks which shows deep blue blobs of cold over the USA, true enough, but colors of pink and red over all the rest of the world, which a voice intones indicates that most of the planet is “at or above” normal temperature.

              But wait! Most of the globe will be “at” normal temp on any date. Making this huge area pink in color tends to make reddish areas appear much larger in extent. What if you made the “at” regions light blue or green? Then the eye’s perception of the balance of things would change dramatically.

              So little time, so many tricks for the fast reaction anti-Trump propaganda ministries to pull.

              1. Yeah, Michael.

                The networks are all in on the Chinese hoax.

              2. I’m accustomed to discussions here to wander off topic. I’ve done it myself. But this one jumps right over to next week’s, or last week’s, shouting match.

  6. I think the poll reflects what we all instinctively know, that Hillary is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human being we’ve ever known, and Trump is deeply unpopular.

    Looking into the guts of the poll and seeing that Trump is more admired 14-9, and his favorable ratings aren’t quite as deeply underwater as hers at -18 to -25, doesn’t really tell the true story of how popular Hillary is where it counts in the news media, Manhattan, Hollywood, and the FBI.

    1. Yes, she’s a cultural icon, and political Barbie, with all the matching accessories. Had to hold my nose in the voting booth.

  7. I think that Trump and the Libertarian candidate got more votes than Clinton and the Green candidate, but am too lazy to look it up.

    1. Why would anyone consider a libertarian to be more aligned with a Republican than with a Democrat?

      Other than ignorance, I mean.

      1. Likely due to knowing some actual Libertarians.

        1. Ah, yes, the “libertarianish” and “often libertarian” Volokh Conspiracy, where movement conservatives inform us that libertarianism is congruent with

          support of the drug war,

          government micromanagement of health care facilities for women,

          preemptive invasion (of the wrong country),


          abusive policing,

          race-targeting voter suppression,

          whittling of the Fourth Amendment,

          Muslim bans,

          government secrecy and surveillance,

          government-led prayer in schools,


          special privilege for religion-based claims,

          bloated military budgets,

          contraception bans,

          and any other element of the Republican Party platform and the movement conservative agenda of medieval social policy and predatory economics.

          I don’t know which is worse — the incessant whining of right-wings with a persecution complex, or the garish, unconvincing libertarian drag in which sheepish conservatives try to cloak themselves.

          1. the incessant whining of right-wings with a persecution complex

            You could put up a screen and charge admission with that kind of projection.

  8. “But this makes me wonder about the significance of the “most admired” label in the first place — and makes me wonder how many people who hear just the headline soundbite (“Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton Retain Most Admired Titles”) might end up getting quite the wrong impression.”


    Lies, damned lies, and statistics.

  9. Wow, this thread is as bad as anything on the Post.

    1. Not really. No Arthur appearance.

      1. If there ever was an exception that proves a rule…

      2. If I am interfering with JesseAz’s aspiration to create a safe space for intolerant, ignorant right-wing yahoos at a libertarian site, that’s a good thing.

    2. Sarcastr0: “Wow, this thread is as bad as anything on the Post.”

      It makes me feel odd to agree with you wholeheartedly. Oh well. Live and learn.

  10. Let me suggest a more accurate headline for the story reporting the results of this poll: “Hillary Clinton most admired woman among that portion of the population believing that self-centered, selfish, greedy, lying manipulative bitch is the ideal to which women should aspire.” That is a relatively small portion of the population, but still large enough to make me wonder whether the average woman should ever be trusted. If Hillary Clinton truly was the ideal to which women aspired, misogyny starts to look like an entirely reasonable response.

    1. The dividing line is education, reason, progress, tolerance, science, and modernity against ignorance, bigotry, superstition, backwardness, and dogma.

      I know which side I’m on. I know which side I expect to win.

      You are going to dislike the future, DjDiverDan.

  11. I think it is great that Prof. Volokh had the time and inclination to post this while maintaining silence on the Kozinski news (perhaps he feels a bit of guilt?), the Trump administration’s ‘ban these words’ inititative (if it doesn’t happen on a mainstream liberal-libertarian campus, it isn’t censorship that merits Volokh Conspiracy attention), and other current events.

    Carry on, clingers.

  12. The conclusion made, that current politicians of national prominence are deeply unpopular, is relevant to the impaired political process.

    The problem stems from voters approving of each’s own representatives while at the same time disapproving of congress as a whole.

    I can’t help but think if voters were represented by a board of representatives, instead of a single individual, there would be less of a problem with crummy incumbents. Voters have a tendency to stick with “their” guy/gal to the detriment of the collective whole.

    With regards to the gerrymandering question, it would be best if congress passed a law to set the congressional districts to the county lines, with each district being no smaller than a single county. Counties with large populations would elect a multiple reps. This way, the electorate would then be establishing the collective legislative body more directly, and bad incumbents would be easier to replace. While this may result in a more “winner take all” result for the majority party within a district, I’d think it would result in better quality on both sides of the aisle.

  13. If 9% call you the most admired person of some kind, that is bound to make you a standout in such a gigantic field. It is a smallish fraction, but that doesn’t mean the inverse, or the 61% unfavorable rating (among which I would be numbered), has much relevance to the fact being determined.

    To take another example, a 28% chance isn’t enough to make any contestant a favorite to win, but that’s the chance the 538 blog gives the Patriots for winning the Super Bowl. No other team is close. Nor would anyone sensible suppose on that basis that the Patriots are a weak contestant.

    If someone could prove to me I had a .001% chance of winning the lottery, I would be out buying tickets like mad. I like odds-on bets.

    1. Stephen Lathrop: “If 9% call you the most admired person of some kind, that is bound to make you a standout in such a gigantic field.”

      Yes, that’s true, but I’ll still disagree. The 9% tells you only what percentage wax ecstatic over the candidate (actually it tells you less than that, and I’m ignoring that Trump has a higher “ecstatic” percentage, but bear with me). The negatives give you good information on the candidate’s likely ceiling.

      HRC has long carried those negatives. They would lead to the prediction that if she had run against a more personable, reasonable-sounding candidate, she would have been beaten handily — in the /popular/ vote (I’m thinking of a John Kasich here). As it was she couldn’t get 50% of voters against a monster like Trump and beat him in the popular vote by only 2%.

      1. NOTE: as to the Patriots, the 28% is an attempt to generate a pure likelihood of winning, whereas Clinton’s 9% popularity (or Trump’s 14%) is not.

  14. Savo said way back there that 18% of Americans identify themselves as in the top 1%. I’ve never been asked, but I identify with that. I just make the base for the calculation the entire population of the world and I realize how lucky I am to be an American. Economic progress was stalled out 2008-Jan. 2017 but we are back on track lately!

  15. Economic progress was stalled out 2008-Jan. 2017 but we are back on track lately!

    After considering the economic progress (ending and recovering from a crisis) America experienced during the Obama administration, the most reasonable conclusion is that the “stalled out” comment was offered by someone who just doesn’t like black guys.

    Other than as shoeshiners, musicians, or athletes, I suppose.

    Carry on, clingers.

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