In Stephen Ambrose’s book, To America : Personal Reflections of an Historian, he notes, as many others have, that what made George Washington our greatest president was his character:
He resisted the efforts to make him into a king and established the precedent that no one should serve more than two-terms as president. He voluntarily yielded power. His enemy, George III, remarked in 1796, as Washington’s second term was coming to an end, “If George Washington goes back to his farm, he will be the greatest character of his age.” Napoleon, then in exile, was as stunned as the rest of the world by Washington’s leaving office. He complained that his enemies “wanted me to become another Washington.” As George Will wrote, “The final component of Washington’s indispensability was the imperishable example he gave by proclaiming himself dispensable.
I can’t help but wonder how much more effective our political system would be if all politicians followed Washington’s example. I do mean ALL, not just the latest NM Democrat that is unwilling to proclaim himself dispensable.