Okay, I have to change my recommendation for anyone starting TOR for the first time....
4. Jedi Consular Shadow is the easiest class. 1. Shadow has stealth. 2. Shadow has multiple abilities for crowd control. I hit level 45 last night and haven't found anything in the game thus far that my shadow cannot handle. The bosses that took my smuggler multiple tries to get past, my shadow gets past first try. Battles out of cut scenes...shadow has no problem. About the only thing I miss from my smuggler scoundrel sawbones is the ability to long term CC droids...My smuggler can CC both droids and organics long term (longer than 15 seconds).
That written, no one will ever convince me the Shadow isn't the easiest class on the republic side, but I also know that a lot of the reason I believe the shadow is so much easier than the Smuggler and Trooper is the fact that I know more about how a MMO works now. With my smuggler, it was my first attempt at a MMO, so I had a huge learning curve. With my Trooper, I was playing with Lynk, so I didn’t really learn to use all the trooper’s abilities and how to use the properly. With my Shadow, I keep her well equipped, I use stims and I plan my strategies. Things I didn’t really do with either my Smuggler or my Trooper, but I did learn to do it with my trooper while playing with Lynk. I can also safely say, my shadow has benefited from my smuggler being level 50. My smuggler has made my shadow stims, medpacs and implants, she has also sent her companion gifts and credits to buy the best weapons and mods available.
So while, the Shadow is what I consider the easiest class, my belief of that is largely because of stealth and the huge number of CCs. Her dying more from falling down elevator shafts, cliffs and falling into lava than being killed by bosses is largely due to my understanding how to properly use and understand her abilities and a clear understanding on how to equip her. Still being able to kill any and everything the game throws at you is a blast and would be possible with my playing style without stealth and CC, which makes the Shadow my favorite and most fun class on the republic side.
Bremiaha will still be my main character, starting to really enjoy the healer role as I am really getting a feel for doing it, but Leyn’a fits my normal style so much better and I really like being able to kill everything so she will be my first Alt when a HMFP or Ops does not need a healer. She will not be a Tank.
So if you haven’t guessed the answer to number 6 has changed to Shadow, because of stealth and CCs. Stealth and CCs just make the game so much easier for people playing solo or people new to MMOs.
As to story, the Jedi Consular's story is meh....but the game play more than makes up for it.