James Earl Carter Jr. is a retired Democrat who served as the 39th president of the United States of America from 1977 to 1981. He also served as the 76th governor of Georgia from 1971 to 1975 and as a Georgia state senator from 1963 to 1967.
Date of birth: October 1, 1924
Place of birth: Born in Georgia, U.S.
Political party: Democratic
Wife: Rosalynn Smith
Jimmy Carter attended Plains High School from 1937 to 1941, graduating from the eleventh grade, as the school did not have a twelfth grade at that time.
In 1941, he started undergraduate coursework in engineering at Georgia Southwestern College in nearby Americus, Georgia. The following year, he transferred to the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, and he earned admission to the Naval Academy in 1943
Carter was a sprint football player for the Navy Midshipmen. He graduated 60th out of 821 midshipmen in the class of 1947 with a Bachelor of Science degree and was commissioned as an ensign.
Jimmy Carter started officer training for submarine duty and served aboard the USS Pomfret. He was promoted to lieutenant junior grade in 1949, and his service aboard Pomfret included a simulated war patrol to the western Pacific and Chinese coast from January to March of that year. In 1951 he was assigned to the diesel/electric USS K-1 (SSK-1), qualified for command, and served in several positions, to include executive officer.
In 1952, he began an association with the Navy’s fledgling nuclear submarine program, led then by Captain Hyman G. Rickover. Rickover had high standards and demands for his men and machines, and Carter later said that, next to his parents, Rickover had the greatest influence on his life. He was sent to the Naval Reactors Branch of the Atomic Energy Commission in Washington, D.C. for a 3 months temporary duty, while Rosalynn moved with their children to Schenectady, New York.
In March 1953, Carter began nuclear power school, a six-month non-credit course covering nuclear power plant operation at the Union College in Schenectady. He wanted to eventually work aboard the USS Seawolf, which was planned to be the second U.S. nuclear submarine.
Jimmy Carter left active military service on October 9, 1953. He served in the inactive Navy Reserve till 1961 and left the service with the rank of lieutenant. His awards include the American Campaign Medal, World War II Victory Medal, China Service Medal, and National Defense Service Medal. As a submarine officer, Carter also earned the “dolphin” badge.
Political Career (1963–1971)
Georgia state senator (1963–1967)
In 1962, Jimmy Carter announced his campaign for an open Georgia State Senate seat just fifteen days before the election His wife Rosalynn, who had an instinct for politics and organization, was instrumental to his campaign.
Early counting of the ballots showed that Carter was behind his opponent Homer Moore. However, this was later found to be a result of fraudulent voting orchestrated by Joe Hurst, the chairman of the Democratic Party in Quitman County.
Carter challenged the election result, which was confirmed fraudulent in an investigation. Following this, another election was held, in which Carter won against Moore as the sole Democratic candidate, with a vote margin of 3,013 to 2,182.
1966 and 1970 gubernatorial campaigns
In the 1966 gubernatorial election, Carter ran against liberal former governor Ellis Arnall and conservative segregationist Lester Maddox in the Democratic primary.
He lost the primaries but drew enough votes as a third-place candidate to force Arnall into a runoff election with Maddox, who then narrowly defeated Arnall.
In the general election, Republican nominee Callaway won the majority of the vote but did not have a 50% majority, thus allowing the Democratic-majority Georgia House of Representatives to elect Maddox as governor.
In the 1970 gubernatorial election, Carl Sanders was Jimmy Carter’s main opponent in the Democratic primaries. Carter aligned with many black personalities such as Martin Luther King Sr. and Andrew Young as well as many black-owned businesses.
Carter came ahead of Sanders in the first ballot by 49 percent to 38 percent in September, leading to a runoff election which he won by an outstanding 60 percent of the vote. He proceeded to win the general election against Republican nominee Hal Suit.
Georgia governorship (1971–1975)
On December 12, 1974, Carter announced his presidential campaign at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
He was competing against sixteen other candidates and was considered to have little chance against the more nationally known politicians like Wallace. He then had a popularity of about 2% and it was uncommon to hear remarks of “Jimmy who” referring to his poor popularity compared to the others.
In response to this, Carter began to emphasize his name and what he stood for, stating “My name is Jimmy Carter, and I’m running for president.”
Jimmy Carter won the election by 50.1 percent to 48.0 percent against his major competitor Ford.
Jimmy carter has had multiple health issues over the years, including surviving cancer. In 2015, he announced that he had been diagnosed with cancer in his liver and brain and soon began treatment. Later that same year, he announced he was cancer-free. In 2019, he underwent surgery after a series of bad falls left him with health issues.
Age: 98 years old (longest-lived and living US president and the one with the longest post-presidency. He is also the third-oldest living person to have served as a nation’s leader).
Jimmy Carter: Preparation For Death
Last month, the Carter Center announced that Jimmy Carter had decided to initiate hospice care at his home in Plains, Ga. “After a series of short hospital stays, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter today decided to spend his remaining time at home with his family and receive hospice care instead of additional medical intervention,” the center said.
President Joe Biden recently revealed that Jimmy carter had requested him to deliver a special tribute upon his death.