Miller Center

Stuart Eizenstat

Stuart  Eizenstat Stuart Eizenstat

Speaker: Stuart Eizenstat
Date: January 29, 1982

Stuart Eizenstat describes his five years of service with Jimmy Carter as an advisor in the 1976 presidential campaign and Assistant to the President for Domestic Affairs and Policy from 1977 to 1981. He begins with Carter's entry into the 1976 presidential race and the challenges he faced in formulating a domestic policy message. He discusses the transition and early months of the Carter presidency and the process of staffing the executive branch, particularly the nascent Domestic Policy Office. Attention is given to the problems the administration faced during its first year in organizing the legislative agenda while facing energy problems. He then explores various issues and events in domestic policy during the rest of the term, including relations with the Cabinet, the presidential review memorandum process, and the July 1979 Cabinet shuffle. Eizenstat gives considerable attention to the relationship between the White House and groups outside the executive branch, particularly Congress, interest groups, and the Democratic Party. He also details several Carter administration policies, including SALT, water projects, urban policy, inflation, and wage and price controls, and the interaction between the budget and the policy agenda. At the end of the interview, Eizenstat looks back at the Carter years and judges the successes and failures of his presidency.