Most observers agree that one of President Obama's biggest strengths is his ability to connect with the ordinary American while many have criticized his foreign policy decisions as being overly cautious. His weaknesses have been the subject of much debate in the media and their interpretation often depends on the partisanship of the observer.
Media pundits with openly right-wing beliefs and biases contend that his foreign policy decisions represent outright weakness - a dangerous weakness that invites foreign powers and radicals to engage with the U.S. These observers point to his reluctance to use American troops in foreign conflicts such as those in Syria or the Ukraine and suggest that he is out of his depth in terms of comprehending the true nature of these conflicts.
Others, however, contend that Obama is a master strategist who is using a calm demeanor as a mask - like a chess player who contemplates several moves ahead of the current situation.
As a man who was born to an 18-year old woman and whose father abandoned the family when he was only two years old, Obama does understand the struggles of the poor and working classes and has been able to communicate that empathy to his constituents. His passing of heath care legislation and other issues like lowering interest rates on student loans have added to the humanitarian aspect of his image, which was a major factor in his election to the office.