Gilbert Fite's masterful biography starts off with Russell's upbringing in an elite Georgia kinfolk. The hugely stratified and class-conscious society of his early years might later impression Russell's legislative schedule. In 1920, Russell used to be elected to the Georgia common meeting, and in 1931 he grew to become governor of Georgia. He held that workplace until eventually 1933, whilst he all started his thirty-eight years of provider within the U.S. Senate.
During Russell's lengthy senatorial occupation, he was once deeply keen on some of the most vital episodes of our nationwide lifestyles: the hot Deal, international battle II, the MacArthur research, the overseas relief debate, and the Warren fee inquiry. His maximum contribution, in keeping with Fite, was once his fierce choice to take care of a powerful nationwide safeguard throughout the chilly struggle; in his 16 years as chairman of the Armed providers Committee, he emerged because the stated chief in Congress on safety concerns. A career-long member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Russell additionally turned one of many nation's most powerful advocates of farm rate helps. less than his sponsorship, the Senate enacted laws constructing the college lunch software and distribution of nutrition to the needy.
But Russell by no means deserted his commitment to the South's conventional values, and he turned the chief of the Southern Bloc that staunchly fought to defeat civil rights laws and hold the constructions of segregation. Russell's unwillingness to compromise on civil rights, says Fite, intended that his occupation was once eventually one in every of neighborhood instead of nationwide leadership.
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Richard B. Russell, Jr., Senator From Georgia (Fred W. Morrison Series in Southern Studies)