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American POTUS

Author: Scott Brun & Alan Lowe

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We are obsessed with the presidency at American POTUS. We believe that the 46 imperfect patriots who have held our nation’s highest office all have something to offer today’s electorate – a perspective that appropriately grounds today’s political conversations in truth and context. To help us reveal the many layers of each administration, we’ll be joined by the nation’s most influential historians, scholars and experts who have studied every facet of the presidents and the presidency. Not only will we cover the crucial decisions that changed the world but also the humor, hobbies and quirks that give us a captivating sense of each American POTUS.
38 Episodes
2 Presidents on the same team with the curious name, the Whig Party.  For this brief moment of time in the mid-1800’s, it was the powerful and divisive home for Zachary Taylor and his VP Millard Fillmore.  But just as soon as this party came to power, they disappeared due to infighting, regional division and…the impending Civil War!Old rough-n-ready Zachary Taylor, his successor Millard Fillmore and The Whig Party!
William Henry Harrison found a fair amount of success on the battlefield, which turned into a successful career as a Governor, which turned into the first “modern” presidential campaign.  Slogans, songs, and some creative spinning of the truth gave him the keys to The White House.  But before he could really make a difference, his very long speech on a very cold and wet inauguration day led to his early demise, just 31 days later.  The oldest and the first President to die in office, POTUS #9, William Henry Harrison.
From the outside, the White House appears to be a shining, peaceful center of American governance.  But inside, there’s a rowdy history of backstabbing, slander, deception, cheating, double-crossing, scamming and swindling!  But what do you expect when you combine powerful personalities with the most powerful office in the world?!  The colorful characters and salacious stories that’ll knock your socks off, on this episode of American POTUS!
As Americans began driving more and more, the need for gas was growing faster than our own supply.  Next thing you know, we had to turn to the Middle East, which resulted in a whole different set of problems that still cross the President’s desk today.  The administrations of Nixon, Ford and Carter – how they all tackled the problem with their own creativity and ingenuity, is on this episode of American POTUS!
In 1952, Dwight Eisenhower's run at the Presidency was a sure thing, but who he would pick as his running mate – it was the question everyone had.  After a lot of deliberation and consultation, he ended up picking a young, smart upstart from California to balance the ticket and get him ready for his own run at the White House. 2 of the most famous political figures of the 20th century, POTUS 34 and POTUS 37 – their dynamic give and take relationship is on this episode of American POTUS!
In late 1918, World War 1 was winding down, but the fighting over what exactly peace would look like, was just getting started.  Woodrow Wilson stepped in with 14-points that he thought would create lasting peace not just then, but for future generations.  He faced an uphill battle though, getting our European allies and our own Congress to back the plan.  Neither was easy and it took a heavy toll on his presidency and his health.
Chief Justice John Marshall was  one of those guys, always in the middle of things - fighting alongside Washington, and helping create the constitution.  But where he really shined, was when our 2nd POTUS asked him to sit on the Supreme Court.  He took the new job and ran with it, creating new procedures used to this day, and most importantly, elevating the court to an independent and co-equal branch of government.  Something Presidents then and now, have a love-hate relationship with!
Asking which President was the worst, will get you many different answers, but most historians and experts will agree – the title goes to James Buchanan.  His resume was one of the most impressive in the history of the White House, but his obsession with being a Presidential People Pleaser may have ultimately been his demise.  He flip-flopped a lot on important issues, and contradicted himself repeatedly, leading many to blame him for finally igniting an already tense situation that would tear the country apart.
From the time James Garfield took office, he was focused on cleaning up the dirty politics of Washington.  And he was making progress, ensuring those that held lucrative government jobs, were actually qualified for those jobs – something that didn’t always happen.  But before he could really make his mark, two gun shots left him fighting for his life.  He died 11 weeks later, leaving the country and history experts to this day, wondering what might have been.  One of the shortest presidencies with the greatest potential for success, is on this episode of American POTUS.
Chester Arthur was the dirty politician who shocked the nation with an honest presidency.  As VP, he was considered harmless with an inconsequential role, but when Garfield was shot, he suddenly found himself in the top job.  The country was full of doubt and fear over what this man with the terrible reputation might do.  But the weight of Presidential responsibility actually turned him around, fixing much of the corruption that he once took advantage of.The all-American redemption story of The Gentleman Boss - Chester Arthur, on this episode of American POTUS
It’s the spring of 1945, and POTUS 32 is exhausted, but still determined to achieve his self-imposed lofty goals.  He sets off on a 14,000 mile journey to the other side of the world, to work with our allies and secure immediate peace, and peace for future generations.  The trip was a success, he came home, made a historic address to congress, then surrendered to the many hurdles his body could no longer take on.The consequential final days of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, on this episode of American POTUS!
We’ve all seen the picture, a smiling Harry Truman holding up the Chicago Daily Tribune’s front page with the headline “Dewey Defeats Truman”. But as with most headlines, there’s a lot of story behind the big bold print.  At the end of the day, it all really came down to overconfidence versus confidence, one side relishing in a supposedly insurmountable lead, the other – kickstarting a whistle-stop tour for the ages.One of the greatest upsets in Presidential Election history, how Harry Truman shocked the world, is on this episode of American POTUS.
He was the President who had it all, then lost it all, only to gain a lot of it back – Richard Nixon.  By most accounts, Tricky Dick had a successful run in the White House, but it was all cut short by the Watergate Cover-Up.  Today, the perspective of history has shown us that his might just be the ultimate comeback story - the president who went from rock bottom to respected and appreciated by the nation and most importantly, his colleagues.  The surprisingly influential post-presidency of Richard Milhouse Nixon is on this episode of American POTUS.
Theodore Roosevelt was a sickly child who found relief in the great outdoors and then preserved it for future generations as our 26th President.  He  always loved a good challenge; personal health, running a ranch, and fighting off the reckless use of our nation’s most impressive wild lands.  It took a lot of political capital to make it happen, and our beautiful national parks exist today because of his overwhelming determination.The boundless energy of Theodore Roosevelt and how he worked to save America’s greatest natural treasures for generations to come, is on this episode of American POTUS.
Thaddeus Stevens was a defiant man who challenged 4 different Presidents of the Civil War era.  Fillmore, Buchanan, Lincoln and Douglas – they were all forced to deal with this head strong political heavyweight, bargaining and negotiating to make positive change in a very difficult time.  It’s an important story of how political influence from Congress can and should affect change on Capitol Hill, The White House and beyond.  The Chief Instigator of the Chief Executive, Thaddeus Stevens is on this episode of American POTUS.
This Hollywood Hero achieved the biggest role on the world’s biggest stage and went on to literally change the world.  To a majority, his 8 years were successful but also full of challenges inside and outside of our borders.  Ultimately, he’s received the biggest award any actor-slash-president could ever want, the everlasting admiration of millions to this day.  The Teflon President, The Gipper, Dutch, The Great Communicator – whatever you want to call him, we call him our 40th POTUS and he’s the star of this episode of American POTUS!
If you thought modern elections were tight, we present to you – the election of 1876!  The outcome was so close and so contested, some say a back room deal ultimately gave Hayes the White House by a margin of just 1 electoral vote.  Hayes did the best he could with his 4 years in office, but the formidable challenges of Southern reconstruction have tarnished his legacy to this day.  We’re taking an objective look at the highly contested presidency of Rutherford Hayes on this episode of American POTUS
Sharing presidential history with your kids that’s both fun & accurate is vitally important.  Washington, Lincoln, Roosevelt, JFK – their All-American stories are ripe with genuinely heroic tales…but also some embarrassing missteps that every young American can learn from.  Put the standard issue school history books aside, we’re looking at the presidency with a modern-day kid-centric storyteller and illustrator!  Their action-packed best-selling stories of 4 presidents and their influence on the world is on this episode of American POTUS!
From a young age, life kept throwing hurdles in front of a determined Bill Clinton, but he always worked and charmed his way over, around or through them – finding success and new opportunities.  And when he ultimately won the presidency in 92, when no one thought it was possible, he brought the same tenacity to his 8 years in The White House.  The personal stories of intelligence, compassion and world-famous charisma of William Jefferson Clinton is on this episode of American POTUS.
The Supreme Allied Commander who would become Commander-in-Chief, Dwight Eisenhower.  If titles were a true description of the man, you’d think his ego would shine as bright as the stars on his old uniform.  But this quiet statesman seemed to find the perfect balance between gentle and tough, cautioning the world’s communist leaders he would fight them every step of the way with not just weapons, but calm, civil negotiated peace.  The most famous of war-time generals who believed it was his #1 job to keep us out of war!  Dwight Eisenhower is on this episode of American POTUS.
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