Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Remarks at the Swearing In of Nicholas Johnson as Maritime Administrator.

March 02, 1964

Mr. Secretary, Mr. Johnson and members of your family, ladies and gentlemen:

You, Mr. Johnson, represent, to my mind, the caliber of young men who infuse this Government with spirit and energy and an intelligent, commonsense grasp of what needs to be done. You are a Phi Beta Kappa whose mind is swift and whose honor is high. As we advance on the problems that this Government faces, we are going to need other Nick Johnsons in other high places in the Government service.

You have set an example by leaving a highly profitable law practice to come here and serve your country. There are few posts in Washington which demand a higher level of perception, a higher level of understanding and initiative than the Maritime Administrator. Secretary Hodges and I both agree that this young man, Nicholas Johnson, has the qualities of brain and temper to do all that is right and all that is just in the carrying out of his duties.

He has the complete confidence of the Secretary and he has my very special confidence. So, Nick, I wish you all success, not only because it will make Secretary Hodges very proud and it will make me proud, but because it will be in the best interests of the Government. I believe that you will set an example that other young men can be proud of and I hope that yours is one of a long list of young men who will leave private life and come here and join the Government in these difficult and trying days.

I assure you that even though you were sitting in with us unofficially the last few days in connection with our wheat sale that as I looked at you across the table I wished you had been with us months before. You are now. I congratulate you and the members of the Senate on their quick confirmation of you. I have not the slightest doubt but that you will do a fine job as Administrator. We are grateful for the patriotism that you have shown in coming with us.

Note: The ceremony was held in the Cabinet Room at the White House. The President's opening words "Mr. Secretary" referred to Secretary of Commerce Luther H. Hodges.

Lyndon B. Johnson, Remarks at the Swearing In of Nicholas Johnson as Maritime Administrator. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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