BARBARA JORDAN by James Haskins


Email this review


From childhood Barbara Jordan always wanted to be somebody--she rejected a career in pharmacy because ""whoever heard of an outstanding pharmacist?""--and she won respect in the Texas State Senate, just as she got through Boston University Law School, by doing more homework than anyone else. Her political career as chronicled here seems composed of more honors and ovations than hard battles--an impression that doesn't counteract the militants' criticism of Jordan as a ""sellout""--but Haskins appends an impressive list of ""legislative accomplishments"" while at the same time facing up to the controversy surrounding her fight to extend the provisions of the Voting Rights Act and her evasive performance on the Democratic Compliance Review Committee. Though Haskins lacks Jordan's celebrated talent for direct, forceful speech--and seems unaware that the frequent tribute, ""she's one of the most intelligent women I've ever met,"" is as condescending as the Texas judge's calling her ""a credit to her race""--he does come through with an honest, balanced portrait of the formidable Representative who works hard, gets things done, makes a policy of compromise, and as a result of the Impeachment hearings, has assuredly become (as the U.S. News described her) one of the Democratic Party's ""new luminaries.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1977
Publisher: Dial