The scandal would also taint Harding’s legacy. To this day, almost a century later, historians have ranked him among the worst of the worst presidents. His naval treaty victory, his freeing of political prisoners and his economic record took a significant backseat in discussions on him.
Pity, actually. In reality, Harding is more like Nixon; a presidency with extremely low lows and extreme successes, making them impossible to adequately scale. A statistician, working off of more objective measurements, would end up putting them in the middle of the pack, with an asterisk mentioning a very high standard deviation. :-)
Of course Harding must be denigrated by today’s academics, because he had the colossal audacity to address a recession with supply-side techniques — — and succeed famously in the process.