October 26th: What's On Today's Show : Blog Of The Nation In the first hour of Talk of the Nation, the political junkie, and the latest developments in Syria. In the second hour, the authors of Love Times Three talk about living a polygamist lifestyle, and Brown University president Ruth Simmons talks about her career and legacy.
NPR logo October 26th: What's On Today's Show

October 26th: What's On Today's Show

In the second hour, the authors of Love Times Three: Our True Story Of A Polygamous Marriage talk about living a polygamist lifestyle.

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The Political Junkie
The once-a-decade political fight over rejiggered congressional districts will be decided by courts in nearly 30 states. In Illinois, Republicans object to a map that endangers their delegation in a state with a Democratic-controlled legislature and governor. The opposite fight is taking place in Texas, where the Republican legislature and governor approved a map that Democrats contend does not accurately reflect population growth. Veteran Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) joins host Neal Conan and political junkie Ken Rudin to discuss his second redistricting battle, and looming primary challenge. Ken and Neal will also recap the week in politics, from Rick Perry's optional flat tax to the now-settled primary calendar.

Turmoil In Syria
Activists report that at least nine civilians were killed in Syria Wednesday in military operations as President Bashar al-Assad continues a crackdown. State television reported that tens of thousands packed a square in Damascus in support of the president, who is being pressed to start a dialogue with the opposition. Tensions with the U.S. have increased since the Obama administration pulled Ambassador Robert Ford out of Syria over concerns about his safety. In turn, Syria brought home its ambassador from Washington. Host Neal Conan talks with Washington Post foreign correspondent Liz Sly, who returned Monday from a five-day trip to Damascus, about the latest developments in Syria.

'Love Times Three'
The family who helped inspire the hit HBO series Big Love has written a tell-all of sorts: A new book called Love Times Three: Our True Story Of A Polygamous Marriage. In it, the Dargers take readers into their world of plural marriage, parenting 23 children and living in a community that views polygamy with scorn. The Dargers are independent fundamentalists and are not recognized by any organized religion. The book is written by the husband, Joe, and three wives Alina, Vicki and Valerie, who themselves grew up in polygamous families. Joe and Alina Darger join Host Neal Conan to talk about the choices they've made and how they get by in a world in which polygamy is illegal.

Ruth Simmons Steps Down At Brown
In 2001, Time magazine named Ruth Simmons America's best college president. That same year, she left Smith College to take the helm at Brown University, becoming the first African American president at an Ivy League school. For the past decade, she's guided Brown through financial challenges, devised a long-term Plan for Academic Enrichment and addressed controversies from the school's involvement in the slave trade to a campus ban on ROTC. Last month, Simmons announced that she will resign as president at the end of the academic year. Host Neal Conan speaks with Simmons about her tenure at Brown University, her long career in higher education and the legacy she leaves behind.