Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 110 Tom BuckReflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 110 Tom Buck

Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 110 Tom Buck

Descriptive Summary

Title: Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 110 Tom Buck
Creator Buck, Thomas Bryant III, 1938-
Dates 2010 March 31
Extent 1.0 interview
Repository Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract Thomas Bryant Buck, III, was first elected to the Georgia General Assembly in 1966. He served for thirty-eight years in the Georgia House of Representatives, one of the longest tenures of any lawmaker in the state's history. He became a committee chairman during his third year in the house, and worked his way steadily up the house leadership ladder, serving in turn as chairman of the Retirement Committee, the University System Committee, and the powerful Ways and Means and Appropriations Committees. In 2004, Buck retired from political office after nineteen legislative sessions. Buck discusses his time in the legislature, the process of drafting a budget, and the state of party politics in Georgia.

Administrative Information

Custodial History note

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.

Preferred citation

Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 110, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.


Restrictions

Copyright Information

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.


Biographical Note

Thomas Bryant Buck III was born on March 2, 1938, in Columbus, Georgia. He graduated from Columbus High School in 1955 and went on to receive a bachelor's degree in 1959 and a law degree in 1962 from Emory University in Atlanta. A conservative Democrat, Buck was first elected to the Georgia General Assembly in 1966. He served for thirty-eight years in the Georgia House of Representatives, one of the longest tenures of any lawmaker in the state's history. Buck was an effective advocate for Columbus and west Georgia because of his position in the legislative leadership. He became a committee chairman during his third year in the house, and worked his way steadily up the house leadership ladder, serving in turn as chairman of the Retirement Committee, the University System Committee, and the powerful Ways and Means and Appropriations Committees. He was widely respected by fellow legislators for his expertise on the state budget along with his deep knowledge of tax law and policy. In 2004, Buck retired from political office after nineteen legislative sessions.


Scope and Content

Tom Buck discusses his childhood in Columbus, Georgia and his education at Emory. He comments on returning to Columbus to practice law in 1962 before being sent off to war as a medic.

Buck recalls running for office in 1966. He discusses his campaign strategy and political philosophy. Buck recalls serving on the Appropriations Committee, Rules Committee, and the "Green Door Committee." He discusses the decision to elect Tom Murphy as Speaker of the House and comments on his personal friendship with Tom Murphy. Buck recalls serving on the House Committee on Higher Education and chairing the Ways and Means Committee. He explains the origin of the unofficial "Green Door Committee" and explains who the members were and what they did.

Buck discusses Governor Lester Maddox's election and his decision to appoint minorities to many state positions. He describes how legislators went about drafting the state budget and explains the responsibility involved. Buck comments on the frustrations of drafting a budget in bad economic times and the occasional necessity to cut programs and services. Buck comments on the feud between Tom Murphy and Zell Miller.

Buck discusses his decision to stop running for office and the state of party politics in Georgia.


Related Collections in this Repository

Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection


Access Points

Apportionment (Election laws)--Georgia.
Attorneys General--United States--Georgia.
Budget--Georgia.
Democratic Party (Ga.)
Emory University.
Georgia--Appropriations and expenditures.
Georgia. General Assembly--Appropriations and expenditures.
Lawyers--Georgia.
Maddox, Lester G., 1915-2003.
Miller, Zell Bryan, 1932-
Murphy, Thomas Bailey, 1924-2007
Oral histories.
Political campaigns--Georgia.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

 
ROGP 110 Tom Buck video ( 69.0 minutes ) VIEW ONLINE
 
ROGP 110 Tom Buck transcript VIEW ONLINE