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Publisher's Summary

In this hour, what's it like to hang out with the U.S. president? Journalist Michael Lewis found out when he shadowed Barack Obama for 8 months, even playing in one of Obama's pick-up basketball games. Lewis calls the presidency "an absurd job" and he describes Obama as "wildly competitive."

Next, what made Lincoln a great president? Was he a closet racist? We hear short interviews with Lincoln historians Doris Kearns Goodwin, Orville Vernon Burton and John Stauffer.

Then, who's the real Barack Obama? That's what journalist David Maraniss wanted to know, so he traveled around the world - from Kenya to Kansas, from Indonesia to Hawaii - to see the places where Obama and his family lived, to talk with people who've known him. Maraniss says Obama's life is surrounded in myth.

After that, how close are we to electing a woman as president? Journalist Rebecca Traister says "next election close." She expects to see a number of prominent women - both Democrats and Republicans - running for president in 2016.

And finally, Robert Caro has spent nearly 40 years on his monumental biography of President Lyndon Johnson, and he's still not done. His fourth volume, The Passage to Power, tells the remarkable story of how LBJ became president after being humiliated as vice-president by Jack and Bobby Kennedy. [Broadcast Date: January 23, 2013]

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