Using historical data, we can identify what experience is most important in hiring a new president. While there are no perfectly objective ways to measure presidential quality, it is fair to say that historians' estimates will certainly succeed at separating the George Washingtons from the Franklin Pierces.
There's a reason the current president promised to be "no-drama Obama." It's a promise he's delivered on, and that has served the country well. Those who want to know what a re-elected Obama is likely to do should not be distracted by his underwhelming recent performances. They should look back at his first-term record and note how consistent it is with his pragmatic and moderate personal character: an effective, but ultimately modest, balanced stimulus that's helped turn the economy around; the achievement, at long-last, of near-universal healthcare using an idea originating in conservative circles; the comeback of that emblem of American capitalism, the auto industry; winding down two wars and killing al Qaeda's leader in a bold but limited strike that deployed smart power rather than chest-thumping militarism; advancing and protecting reproductive and LGBT rights.