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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Jimmy Carter [exact date unavailable], 1974. Interview A-0066. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Candidates of both parties should be accessible to voters as they govern

Political candidates should respond to the Watergate scandal by making their governing practices accessible and open to the public.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Jimmy Carter [exact date unavailable], 1974. Interview A-0066. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

JIMMY CARTER:
I think so. I think so. And we've seen through Watergate . . . I don't think Democrats ought to depend on Watergate as an issue to get elected. I think it would be a mistake. It lulls you into a false sense of security. And I think the people will resent it. I think the Watergate issue is something that the Republicans are embarrassed about, and they don't want to have it rubbed in their faces and have to [talk about] it. I think anybody that raises it as an issue is making a serious mistake for themselves. But I think the essence of Watergate that can be utilized by Democratic and other candidates is . . . when I'm in office, I'm going to open up the governor's office, or the judge's office, or the sheriff's office, to the people, and describe pragmatically and frankly and accurately how they're going to do it. In Georgia, I have tried to do it. I promised through the campaign I'd have a Visitor's Day every Monday, anybody in the state that wanted to can come see me personally. Every Monday. I don't care who he is. I'll have a press conference every week. We've got a sunshine law in Georgia. We televise all of our . . . we televise every day of our General Assembly sessions at night at ten o'clock. Do everything we can to open up state government to direct access by the people, and remove the intermediates. Who, as I say, are benevolent people. I'm not ascribing any ulterior motives to them.