The Dallas Morning News reports that Jack Hightower, the former Congressman and Texas Supreme Court justice, has died at the age of 86. Hightower, a Democrat, also served in both houses of the State Legislature.
After serving in the military, Hightower began his long and prosperous political career at the age of 26, when be became the District Attorney of the 46th Judicial District, covering Foard, Hardeman and Wilbarger Counties. He took this position immediately after being admitted to the Bar of Texas.
Then, in a move that would be unheard of in today’s day and age, Hightower ran for and was elected to a seat in the Texas House of Representatives, all the while contuing to serve as the District Attorney. Hightower only served in the State House for one term, from 1953 to 1955. He then continued serving as the District Attorney until 1961.
A number of years later Hightower was elected to the Texas Senate, where he served for one term from 1965 to 1967. More years later, in the aftermath of Watergate, he defeated Republican Bob Price in his Pandhandle district, and served for ten years, until Hightower himself was the victim of a partisan landslide in 1984 that contributed to his defeat.
To top off his career, Hightower was elected to the Texas Supreme Court in 1988, where he served for the next six years. Coincidentally, the individual who succeeded him (when he retired) on the court was a District Judge named Greg Abbott.
Hightower served with integrity and honesty, and perpetually did things for the good of his country. Luckily for him, as a liberal Democrat, he lived in a day where his constituents were intelligent enough to discern between national politics and local/judicial ones. Fox News has taken care to ensue that is no longer the case. But Hightower was not swayed by national interests and whims. He always stood fast to his principles and stuck up for the little guy.
RIP, Justice Hightower.