House of Cards Wiki
House of Cards Wiki
The subject of this article appeared in the U.S. TV series.

Douglas "Doug" Stamper (May 1, 1964 - January 18, 2018) was President Frank Underwood's White House Chief of Staff and former director of strategy.


Stamper was born in Naperville, Illinois. His family later moved to Columbus, Ohio. Unlike his brother, he never saw the appeal of settling down with a wife and children, and moved to Washington, D.C. to further his career. Doug's sense of identity is dependent on his role as Frank Underwood's right-hand man. To preserve this, he will go to any lengths to serve and protect Frank. An example of this is when he offered to give up his liver for a transplant that Francis required whilst in hospital after being shot in season 4.

Season 1[]

In Season 1, Stamper used Rachel Posner to seduce Peter Russo, compromising his pledge of sobriety, which led to Russo's failed candidacy and eventual death. Also, Stamper was a recovering alcoholic with 14 years sober, he regularly attended Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. He used that fact to keep Russo clean for the necessary time, sponsoring and taking Russo to meetings.

Season 2[]

When Posner met Zoe Barnes for an impromptu conversation about Russo's death, and Underwood's ascension to the Vice Presidency, Posner chose to have her own personal life played out in the press rather than rat out Stamper and Underwood's plan. Doug moved Rachel out of the public eye and forced her to live in a new apartment in Joppa, Maryland away from Washington. He also disapproved of, and attempted to sabotage her relationship with Lisa Williams. This caused much tension between them and led to Rachel snapping and escaping from his car as he transported her away from Joppa.

Doug was also used by Frank Underwood to investigate the dealings between Raymond Tusk and Xander Feng, monitoring the Native American casino they used to launder campaign money. He later flew to Beijing to meet with Feng on Underwood's behalf.


Doug Stamper injured

Doug lies motionless.

Doug was attacked by Rachel Posner after he pursued her into the woods from his car. She used a brick to strike him on the head three times. Incapacitated, he remained almost motionless and undiscovered as a helicopter passed nearby.

Season 3[]


In Season 3 it is revealed that Doug was found and did survive the attack but suffered from brain damage which causes problems with his leg. This requires six months of hospitalization, use of a cane and extensive physiotherapy.


After the attack, Stamper suffers from serious anxiety and depression. After breaking his arm after slipping in the shower, Stamper is prescribed painkillers, which kick-start his descent back into alcoholism. Although he initially regulates the amount of liquor he drinks with a syringe, Stamper later starts drinking uncontrollably. This is exacerbated when he is informed by Gavin Orsay that Rachel Posner has been killed in a car accident. He eventually turns up to a meeting with President Frank Underwood intoxicated, begging for help, and blames the relapse on the stress working for Heather Dunbar. After this meeting, Frank calls Heather to threaten her and helps his old friend.


With the aid of his brother Gary Stamper, Doug returns to sobriety, and convinces Frank Underwood to give him the position of White House Chief of Staff after Remy Danton resigns. He proves his loyalty to Underwood by burning a page from the doctors journal he promised Dunbar, as it contained details of the secret abortion Claire Underwood had. Doug reveals Dunbar had been willing to pay him $2,000,000 for the journal.

After being betrayed by Gavin Orsay, Stamper enlists in the help of friend Nathan Green, who has tracked Orsay to Caracas, Venezuela. Unable to officially extradite him to the U.S., Doug personally travels to Caracas to find Gavin. Upon finding him living in a moored boat, Doug severely beats Gavin with his cane, causing him to eventually disclose the location of Rachel Posner.

Upon returning to the U.S., Doug travels to Santa Fe, New Mexico and begins to stalk Rachel. After purchasing a van, shovel and various chemicals (acetone and bleach to make chloroform), he kidnaps her and drives her to the middle of the desert. Doug initially shows compassion to Rachel, allowing her to leave when she claims she is starting a new life as Cassie Lockhart and has no desire to get involved uncovering Frank Underwood's crimes. However, Doug quickly changes his mind. He turns the van around and runs Rachel over, killing her. He then proceeds to bury her body in the pre-dug grave in the New Mexico desert. He then returns to White House to officially serve as Frank's Chief of Staff.

Season 4[]

Doug continues to serve Frank as his Chief of Staff. Season 4 saw Doug struggling to keep things in control during both Frank and Claire's separation and finding out of Seth's betrayal that nearly results in Doug killing Seth. When Frank is shot, Doug offers his liver to the President but cannot donate due to his alcoholic history. After forcing a dying patient to die in order for a wounded Frank to be bumped in the donation list to get the liver, he begins to have spells of guilt. His guilt leads him to donating a large sum of money to his family and he begins seeing the deceased man's wife.

Season 5[]

Doug continues as Frank's Chief of Staff, as a part of Frank's plan that leads to his resignation from the Presidency, Doug is a mole that releases classified information to the Washington Herald, posing as Catherine Durant later, Doug takes a fall for Frank and takes the blame for the murder of Zoe Barnes. After having a conflict with Claire Underwood, he officially handed in his resignation to Frank before he resigned the Presidency.

Season 6[]

With Frank Underwood dead and Claire Underwood serving as President, Doug recants his admission of guilt in Zoe Barnes' murder. Lacking evidence to use against him, the DOJ allows for his release from a psychiatric facility. The deal was struck when he threatened to use testimony from him and Catherine Durant to derail Claire's presidency.

Doug gets a new job as political operative for a young Congressman from Illinois who hopes to become Speaker of the House. But his real goal is to secure Frank's legacy from Claire, who is determined to erase it.

During a tense confrontation in the Oval Office, Doug confesses to Claire that he was Frank's murderer. Doug murdered him when Frank went to the White House to kill Claire, who had refused to pardon him. Knowing that this would forever tarnish Frank's legacy, which took years of careful planning and strategy, Doug sabotaged his liver medication to induce an overdose.

Doug then angrily pleads Claire to admit that her success is because of Frank. Claire refuses, and Doug threatens her with a letter opener (similar to the one Frank let him keep before he resigned). Once free of his grip, Claire takes the letter opener and stabs Doug in the torso. She then comforts him as he slowly bleeds to death on the Oval Office floor, and finishes him off by cupping her hand over his mouth and nose to suffocate him (similar to how Doug himself threatened Seth using a glass).


Quiet, cold, and calculating, Stamper is a vital cog in Underwood's political machine, serving as his chief of staff. His talents for discretion and subterfuge allow him to be ruthlessly efficient.

Stamper has demonstrated a willingness to control his targets mainly through coercion. Due to his proven skills and decades-long loyalty, Underwood fully trusts Stamper, giving him a high degree of autonomy in his work. However, Underwood is initially reluctant to bring him back on board during season 3 due to Stamper's physical and mental instability.

Characters met[]

Behind the Scenes[]

Doug Stamper was portrayed by Michael Kelly in Seasons 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 of House of Cards.


Season 1
"Chapter 1" "Chapter 2" "Chapter 3" "Chapter 4" "Chapter 5"
"Chapter 6" "Chapter 7" "Chapter 8" "Chapter 9" "Chapter 10"
"Chapter 11" "Chapter 12" "Chapter 13"
Season 2
"Chapter 14" "Chapter 15" "Chapter 16" "Chapter 17" "Chapter 18"
"Chapter 19" "Chapter 20" "Chapter 21" "Chapter 22" "Chapter 23"
"Chapter 24" "Chapter 25" "Chapter 26"
Season 3
"Chapter 27" "Chapter 28" "Chapter 29" "Chapter 30" "Chapter 31"
"Chapter 32" "Chapter 33" "Chapter 34" "Chapter 35" "Chapter 36"
"Chapter 37" "Chapter 38" "Chapter 39"
Season 4
"Chapter 40" "Chapter 41" "Chapter 42" "Chapter 43" "Chapter 44"
"Chapter 45" "Chapter 46" "Chapter 47" "Chapter 48" "Chapter 49"
"Chapter 50" "Chapter 51" "Chapter 52"
Season 5
"Chapter 53" "Chapter 54" "Chapter 55" "Chapter 56" "Chapter 57"
"Chapter 58" "Chapter 59" "Chapter 60" "Chapter 61" "Chapter 62"
"Chapter 63" "Chapter 64" "Chapter 65"
Season 6
"Chapter 66" "Chapter 67" "Chapter 68" "Chapter 69" "Chapter 70"
"Chapter 71" "Chapter 72" "Chapter 73"


Political offices
Preceded by
Remy Danton
White House Chief of Staff
2015 – present
United States order of precedence
Preceded by
Order of Precedence of the United States
as White House Chief of Staff
Succeeded by