(Backgrounds by Craig & Karl for The Washington Post; Photo by Amy King/The Washington Post)

In the newest episode of the Presidential podcast, biographer David McCullough looks at some of the most difficult calls President Truman made during his time in the White House, including the decisions to drop the atomic bomb, push for civil rights legislation and fire Gen. Douglas MacArthur.

Washington Post polling manager Scott Clement also joins the episode to explain the biggest polling failure in presidential history—when Truman won the 1948 election, despite the many polls that seemed to show he didn't stand a chance.

Listen to the episode here or on iTunes:

In previous episodes of the Presidential podcast, we've explored topics like Theodore Roosevelt's heartbreak and the violent life of Andrew Jackson. The podcast is hosted by Lillian Cunningham, editor of The Washington Post's On Leadership section.

As listeners tune in each week, the podcast reveals the ways in which our collective sense of what’s ’presidential’ has evolved over the years and how each president—esteemed, loathed or nearly forgotten—has something to tell us about what it takes to hold the nation’s highest office.

A new episode comes out every Sunday. Here's how to follow along:

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