Lest any one be disappointed, let me say up front that I don’t plan to answer the question that titles this essay. I frankly do not know the answer, nor even have a firm opinion.
When it comes to where President Obama was born, there is a right answer and a wrong answer, and I don’t think that the perspective of history will add much if anything to that question. When it comes to a President’s job performance, the phrase “fog of war” comes to mind and it’s hard to be objective from the middle of the propaganda battle.
People who dislike Obama through confirmation bias or something more sinister, portray everything he does as a disaster, and the worst ever. It is trivially easy to find anything that is not perfect and claim that it should be better, whether it reasonably could be made better or not. No President (save perhaps Lincoln) actually presided over the near destruction of the country, and while we have problems, I don’t think the country is anywhere near the verge of civil war nor an economic collapse like the Great Depression. Obama critics on the left had, I think, an unrealistic view of how liberal he was, and so they are disappointed when he’s not what they expected. I see Obama as a moderate pragmatist and not at all compatible with extremists and radicals on either the left or the right—and those people are the ones who make the most noise.
If I could point one unequivocal failure of the Obama Administration, it would be the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. However, that is mitigated by an army of people working as hard as they could to make it fail. Understanding this issue, too, will benefit from the hindsight of history, and 5 years from now, the ACA may be as popular as Social Security.
So ask me again in 10 years whether I think Barack Obama was a good President.