Obama was rated 15th greatest president in 2010. He has now dropped to 18th. Not much of a drop? Ah, but the content of the ratings is what is troublesome.
Respondents were mixed in their view of Barack Obama. Overall, he was the 18th highest rated president, but only 4 respondents put him among the best, while 11 respondents placed him among the worst. Similarly, 22 respondents viewed Obama as among the most over-rated, compared to 13 who viewed him as under-rated. Obama was also viewed as the second-most polarizing president (after George W. Bush). Of the 19 modern presidents (i.e., back to Teddy Roosevelt), Obama was rated 13th in terms of legislative skill, 11th for diplomatic skill and 10th in terms of both integrity and military skill. (emphasis added)
The scholarly predisposition for Obama can be seen in the scholarly ratings that Barack Obama had even before doing anything--sort of like his winning of the Nobel Peace Prize (nine months after taking office and before any major foreign policy success).
First, it is easy to infer that scholars and the public alike expected greatness from Obama early on and awarded it to him prematurely. Compare, after all, the fact that Obama’s first ranking in a major greatness poll was at #15; one must go back a half-century to Lyndon Johnson to find a president who entered the rankings at a higher number (#10), and LBJ was a well-known figure on the national stage who entered office after the national tragedy of his predecessor’s assassination. (emphasis added)