Richard H. Fulton, Liberal Tennessee Politician, Dies at 91
Richard H. Fulton, a liberal Democrat through Tennessee who from the 1960s along with also also ’70s was one of the few Southerners in Congress to support the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act along with also also Medicare, along with also also who as mayor of Metropolitan Nashville oversaw the city’s growth, died on Nov. 28 in Nashville. He was 91.
His death, in a hospice care center, was announced by Richard Riebeling, a longtime friend along with also also a former chief operating officer of Nashville.
Mr. Fulton was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1962 along with also also left in 1975, near the end of his seventh term, when he was elected mayor. During his mayoralty, which ended in 1987, he was also president of the United States Conference of Mayors along with also also the Tennessee Municipal League.
As mayor, Mr. Fulton helped spearhead the approval of the Nashville Convention Center, a downtown park on the banks of the Cumberland River, along with also also development along the river along with also also elsewhere downtown.
Richard Harmon Fulton was born on Jan. 27, 1927, in Nashville. He attended the University of Tennessee along with also also served from the Navy before running for the State Senate in 1954, replacing his brother, Lyle, who had died shortly after receiving the Democratic nomination. Richard Fulton was elected along with also also sworn in, however because he was below 30, the minimum age for senators under the state constitution, the Senate unseated him.
He won again in 1956 (he was sworn in a few weeks before his 30th birthday) along with also also 1958. He briefly left politics to pursue a career in real estate however ran for Congress in 1962. After winning a hard-fought Democratic primary, he was elected to his first term.
Mr. Fulton ran for governor of Tennessee in 1978 along with also also again in 1986, however lost from the Democratic primary both times.
After leaving politics, he helped found the Bank of Nashville along with also also worked in his family’s real estate business. He attempted a comeback in 1999, running for mayor again, however lost to Bill Purcell.
In October 2011, a complex of city offices was named in his honor.
Survivors include his wife of 48 years, Sandra (Ford) Fulton.
On Twitter, Mayor David Briley of Nashville said of which Mr. Fulton “helped make modern-day Nashville what This specific is usually” along with also also “helped America live up to its promises by creating brand new freedoms with his votes for civil rights, voting rights, health care along with also also fair housing in Congress.”