The Baby Name 'Donald' Continues To Decline In Popularity

The president's name hit its lowest-ever ranking on the Social Security Administration's list of most popular names.
The name Donald fell 27 places in the annual ranking of most popular baby names.
Carlo Allegri / reuters
The name Donald fell 27 places in the annual ranking of most popular baby names.

The baby name “Donald” continues to decline in popularity in the U.S., according to new data from the Social Security Administration.

The agency on Friday released its list of the most popular baby names in the U.S. for the year 2019. Between 2018 and 2019, the name Donald fell 27 places to 553th from 526th among the most popular baby names for boys ― its lowest-ever ranking on the annual list, which dates back to the 1880s.

Donald peaked in popularity in the year 1934, when it was the sixth most popular name for baby boys. It has followed a general pattern of decline ever since, though it saw a slight bump in 2017 when President Donald Trump took office. The following two years, however, marked a return to the downward trend.

In 2019, 506 newborn boys were named Donald, down from 538 in 2018 and 602 in 2017.

The agency draws its name data from applications for Social Security cards based on year of birth (as long as the name is at least two characters long and the sex and state where the birth took place are known).

Social Security Administration

The names of presidents often decline in popularity during their administrations, as happened with Ronald during the Reagan era, Richard in the time of Nixon, Gerald under Ford and George under H.W. Bush. The name Lyndon saw a boost in 1964, but it tanked for the remainder of President Johnson’s administration.

The agency’s records contain only names given to five or more newborns in a given year, so the name Barack didn’t appear until 2007, when five baby boys were named Barack. The number peaked at 71 in 2009 but generally declined throughout Barack Obama’s presidency (though it’s seen small bumps in recent years).

The names of many Trump family members also fell in popularity last year. The name Tiffany dropped from 690th to 700th, and Eric fell from 160th to 176th.

In 2017, Melania became one of the fastest rising names baby names for girls at 933th, with 283 newborn Melanias that year. But it has subsequently fallen off the top 1,000 list. In 2019, 208 baby girls were named Melania, down from 233 in 2018.

Ninety-seven baby Ivankas were born in 2018, but that number dropped a tad to 95 in 2019. The number of baby boys named Barron also fell, from 121 in 2018 to 106 last year.

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