Presidential Quotations

Quotations, random or not, from America’s Presidents

“Few men have virtue to withstand the highest bidder.” GW

“I pray Heaven to bestow the best of blessing on this house (the White House) and on all that shall hereafter inhabit it. May none but honest and wise men ever rule under this roof!” JA

“The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.” TJ

“The truth is that all men having power ought to be mistrusted.” JM

“National honor is a national property of the highest value.” JM

“Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.” JQA

“I know what I am fit for. I can command a body of men in a rough way; but I am not fit to be President.” AJ

“As to the Presidency, the two happiest days of my life were those of my entrance upon the office and my surrender of it.” MVB

“A decent and manly examination of the acts of the Government should be not only tolerated, but encouraged.” WHH

“Here lies the body of my good horse, ‘The General.’ For twenty years he bore me around the circuit of my practice, and in all that time he never made a blunder. Would that his master could say the same!” JT

“No president who performs his duties faithfully and conscientiously can have any leisure.” JKP

“For more than half a century, during which kingdoms and empires have fallen, this Union has stood unshaken. The patriots who formed it have long since descended to the grave; yet still it remains, the proudest monument to their memory. . .” ZT

“An honorable defeat is better than a dishonorable victory.” MF

“The revenue of the country, levied almost insensibly to the taxpayer, goes on from year to year, increasing beyond either the interests or the prospective wants of the Government.” FP

“The ballot box is the surest arbiter of disputes among freemen.” JB

“You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.” AL

“If the rabble were lopped off at one end and the aristocrat at the other, all would be well with the country.” AJ

“My failures have been errors of judgment, not of intent.” USG

“Nothing brings out the lower traits of human nature like office seeking.” RBH

“A brave man is a man who dares to look the Devil in the face and tell him he is a Devil.” JAG

“If it were not for the reporters, I would tell you the truth.” CAA

“A man is known by the company he keeps, and also by the company from which he is kept out.” GC

“The disfranchisement of a single legal elector by fraud or intimidation is a crime too grave to be regarded lightly.” BH

“That’s all a man can hope for during his lifetime—to set an example—and when he is dead, to be an inspiration for history.” WM

“To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.” TR

“The intoxication of power rapidly sobers off in the knowledge of its restrictions and under the prompt reminder of an ever-present and not always considerate press, as well as the kindly suggestions that not infrequently come from Congress.” WHT

“America was established not to create wealth but to realize a vision, to realize an ideal – to discover and maintain liberty among men.” TWW

“”My God, this is a hell of a job! I have no trouble with my enemies . . . but my damn friends, they’re the ones that keep me walking the floor nights.” WGH

“Character is the only secure foundation of the state.” JCC

“Absolute freedom of the press to discuss public questions is a foundation stone of American liberty.” HCH

“A good leader can’t get too far ahead of his followers.” FDR

“We need not fear the expression of ideas—we do need to fear their suppression.” HST

“There is nothing wrong with America that the faith, love of freedom, intelligence and energy of her citizens cannot cure.” DDE

“If we cannot end now our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity.” JFK

“You ain’t learnin’ nothin’ when you’re talkin’.” LBJ

“Always give your best, never get discouraged, never be petty; always remember, others may hate you. Those who hate you don’t win unless you hate them. And then you destroy yourself.” RMN

“Truth is the glue that holds governments together. Compromise is the oil that makes governments go.” GRF

“The best way to enhance freedom in other lands is to demonstrate here that our democratic system is worthy of emulation.” JEC

“Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” RWR

“I want a kinder, gentler nation.” GHWB

“We need a spirit of community, a sense that we are all in this together. If we have no sense of community, the American dream will wither.” WJC

“Recognizing and confronting our history is important. Transcending our history is essential. We are not limited by what we have done, or what we have left undone. We are limited only by what we are willing to do.” GWB

“We did not come to fear the future. We came here to shape it.” BO

“I thought it would be easier.” DJT