Episode Seven: The Heroic Posture Washington, W.H. Harrison, Grant, Eisenhower. From the beginning, the presidential office has beckoned to national heroes renowned for their selfless service to their country. This affinity is especially strong for men of military fame, for the president is formally the commander-in-chief as well as symbolically the steward of the national interest. Episode Eight: Compromise Choices Pierce, Garfield, Harding, Ford. With the rise of political parties came the dawn of political compromise: nominees were selected because they were less offensive to some voters than those who might have been the best candidates. Two of the men profiled in this hour found the presidency beyond their abilities, while two proved themselves worthy of having been called to the highest office in the land.