|Title:||Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 035 Buddy Darden|
|Creator||Darden, George Washington, 1943-|
|Dates||2008 June 18|
|Repository||Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies|
|Abstract||Buddy Darden served as a U.S Representative from Georgia’s 7th district from 1983 to 1995, and previously served as a Georgia Representative and Cobb County district attorney. In this interview he discusses his early life and his political career, reflecting on his college years working for Senator Richard B. Russell, Jr., his campaigns for office, and his legislative career on the state and national level. He also shares his thoughts on several policy topics and recalls his relationships with political figures like Senator Russell, Carl Vinson, Tom Murphy, and Roy Barnes, while also giving insight to his personal and family life.|
Reflections on Georgia Politics began in the fall of 2006 at Young Harris College, as a lecture and discussion program hosted by Georgia political veteran Bob Short. In late 2007, the Richard B. Russell Library began producing the program as an oral history video series to further illuminate and personalize the tectonic shifts that occurred in Georgia politics in the late twentieth century.
Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 035, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.
Resources may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
George Washington “Buddy” Darden was born in Sparta, Georgia, on November 22, 1943. He attended North Georgia College, and earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Georgia in 1965. He was selected to serve in Senator Richard B. Russell’s patronage program in Washington, D.C. He received his law degree from the University of Georgia Law School in 1967, and served as assistant district attorney in Cobb County from 1968 to 1972, when he was elected district attorney. In 1980, he was elected as a Democrat to the Georgia House of Representatives, and served on the Judiciary Committee. After the death of U.S. Representative Larry McDonald, Darden won the special election to take his seat. In congress, he served on several committees, including the House Armed Services, Ethics, and Appropriations. In 1994, he lost his reelection bid, and unsuccessfully campaigned for congress in 2002. He served under Governor Roy Barnes as chairman of the Judicial Nominating Commission. Since 1995, he has been with the law firm McKenna, Long & Aldridge. President Clinton appointed him to the Overseas Private Investment Corporation. After Clinton left office, Darden began doing work for the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, traveling to various countries including Indonesia and Senegal. Darden has also represented Georgia’s interests in the water disputes with Alabama and Florida.
Darden discusses his early life and his political and law career. He talks about his experience working for Senator Richard B. Russell, Jr., as a patronage employee during his college years and covers the beginnings of his political career as an assistant district attorney and, later, district attorney for Cobb County. He gives an overview of his legislative work serving in the Georgia House of Representatives and recalls his special election campaign that led him to fill the seat of U.S. Representative Larry Walker after his sudden death in 1983. Darden comments on the committee work he performed in the U.S. House, including work with the Armed Services, Interior and Insular, Appropriations, and Ethics Committees. He shares his thoughts and opinions on a range of policy issues, including fiscal matters, foreign policy, immigration, and campaign finance. He reflects on the shifts in party power amidst the Republican Revolution in 1994 and the rise of a Republican dominance in Georgia politics. Darden also discusses his relationships with important figures in his career, such as Senator Russell, Roy Barnes , Carl Vinson, and Tom Murphy.