Study Guide

Hamilton Jordan in Crisis of Confidence

By Jimmy Carter

Hamilton Jordan

Looks can be deceiving. And so can rumors of drug use among White House staff.

To avoid this deception, let's examine both sides of Hamilton Jordan. On one hand, he's known as the effective political strategist who catapulted a relatively unknown candidate first into the governor's mansion of Georgia and then into the White House of the United States. Not too shabby, huh? After the shake-up in staff following the "Crisis of Confidence" speech, Jordan was promoted to the position of White House Chief of Staff.

On the other hand, this figure ain't without controversy. Youthful looks and a casual air gave him a reputation as a party boy. Adding to this image were reports of cocaine use, nightclub attendance, and other scandalous activities that served only to cripple an already struggling Carter administration.

The truth of the matter, however, is that none of the particularly scandalous stories—including alleged drug use—were never substantiated. And, as far as these things relate to the "Crisis of Confidence" speech, Jordan's promotion was interpreted more as a sign of a struggling Jimmy Carter than as a succeeding Hamilton Jordan.

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