The article compares the efficacy of political leadership of three executive politicians: George Bush, John Major, and Jacques Chirac. Their leadership styles and skills are analyzed according to a model of skill in historical and political content. The three men held office at approximately the same time, following a politically strong predecessor. Their main task was to put their stamp on politics and policy. Bush and Major lost general elections to “reform” parties, and Chirac lost a legislative election that he called and is now serving in “cohabitation” with a “reform” premier. The objective of the article is to assess the relative importance of personal political skill in policy achievements in relation to contextual factors. The article is the first step in a larger comparative study of top political executives in the three countries, which will begin in the early 1970s and end in the present time.