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Host: Scott LaMar

The Presidents by C-SPAN's Brian Lamb and Susan Swain

Written by Scott LaMar, Executive Producer and Smart Talk Host | May 3, 2019 4:20 AM
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WITF Smart Talk host Scott LaMar with C-SPAN's Brian Lamb and Susan Swain./Photo Art Titzel

What to look for on Smart Talk Friday, May 3, 2019:

For the past 40 years, the cable TV network C-SPAN has televised floor sessions from Congress and other public affairs venues. Often, C-SPAN's programming includes interviews with newsmakers, historians and authors.

Some of those interviews have been made into books.

The latest book is The Presidents by C-SPAN Founder and chairman Brian Lamb and Susan Swain, C-SPAN's Co-CEO.

In a book that was published just a few weeks ago, America's 44 presidents are ranked from one to 44. Current President Donald Trump is not ranked since he is still in office. The rankings are based on 10 categories with points assigned to those categories. C-SPAN updates their Historian Survey on Presidential Leadership after presidents leave office.

There are short stories about each of the presidents taken from interviews on C-SPAN with historians or those who have written biographies of a president.

Not surprisingly, Abraham Lincoln is ranked number one and Pennsylvania's only president James Buchanan is considered the worst U.S. president, according to the historians.

Lamb and Swain recently appeared at Midtown Scholar Bookstore in Harrisburg where they talked about The Presidents. That conversation makes up Friday's Smart Talk.

This is a previously recorded segment and, therefore, we are not able to take listener calls and emails.

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