Hillary Clinton is Not the Persuader, Bill Clinton is

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When a national survey measured the persuasive power of public figures, Bill Clinton finished near the top of the list, Hilary near the bottom

Research from the newly released McGraw-Hill book “Presentations That Change Minds” measured who Americans pick as the “most persuasive presenters our time.” The top four picks included three former US Presidents and the legendary leader of the civil right moment. Americans picked Ronald Reagan first with 48.4%, second came Dr. Martin Luther King with 43.4%, then Bill Clinton with 42.9%, and John F. Kennedy with 39.7%. In terms of public figures, who are still alive, Bill Clinton topped the list.

In contrast, Hillary Clinton finished fourth from the bottom of the list with only 8.4% picking her as being among the most persuasive presenters of our time.

Ahead of Ms. Clinton with about a third of Americans picking them came Rudi Giuliani with 34.2%, Colin Powell 30.8%, and Lee Iacocca with 30.5%. Falling into the teens bellow them came Tony Blair with 18.9%, Donald Trump 18.4%, Bill Gates 16.9%, and Walt Disney with 13.9%. Still ahead of Hillary Clinton came Nelsen Mandela with 12.9%, Steven Jobs 12.7%, John McCain 11.2%, Henry Kissenger 10.4%, George W. Bush 10.2%, Condoleeza Rice 9.2%, and Ross Perot with 9.2%. Arnold Schwarzenegger tied with Ms. Clinton’s score of 8.4%.

Finishing behind Ms. Clinton in the survey was Princess Diana with 7.7%, John Edwards with 3.0%, Akio Morita 2.5%, and Kofi Annan 1.5%.

There are many factors that can predict a politicians sucessful run for higher office with the ability to persuade audiences is a key skill. This survey suggests that Americans who recall Bill Clinton’s remarkable persuasive abilities do not see this same skills in his wife.

Should Ms. Clinton seek the presidency, many Americans do not see her nearly as persuasive as possible republican rivals Rudi Giuliani, Colin Powell, John McCain or Condoleeza Rice.

This survey was conducted for the book “Presentations that Change Minds” (December 2005) McGraw-Hill. To ask questions about the survey or interview author Josh Gordon send an email or call (718) 802-0488

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Josh Gordon
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