Jack Miller (Iowa politician)

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Jack Richard Miller
Jack R. Miller IA.jpg
Former Senior Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
From: June 6, 1985 – August 29, 1994
Predecessor ???
Successor ???
Former Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
From: October 1, 1982 – June 6, 1985
Predecessor (seat established, no predecessor)
Successor Glenn Leroy Archer, Jr.
Former Associate Judge of the United States Court of Customs and Patent Appeals
From: July 6, 1973 – October 1, 1982
Predecessor James Lindsay Almond, Jr.
Successor (seat abolished)
Former U.S. Senator from Iowa
From: January 3, 1961 – January 3, 1973
Predecessor Thomas E. Martin
Successor Richard Clarence "Dick" Clark
Former Member of the Iowa Senate
From: 1957–1960
Predecessor ???
Successor ???
Former Member of the Iowa House of Representatives
From: 1955–1956
Predecessor ???
Successor ???
Party Republican
Spouse(s) Isabelle Margaret Browning
Military Service
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Army
Service Years 1942–1946 (Army Air Corps)
Rank Lieutenant Colonel
Unit United States Army Air Corps
Battles/wars World War II

Jack Richard Miller (June 6, 1916 – August 29, 1994) was a Republican from Iowa who served as the state's U.S. senator for two terms from 1961 to 1973, when he was defeated for re-election. He previously served in the state legislature, both in the Iowa House of Representatives and the Iowa Senate.

Early life and career

Miller was born in Chicago to Blanche Wayne Miller and Forrest Wayne Miller.[1] In 1932, he moved to Sioux City, Iowa, and later attended Crieghton University, graduating cum laude in 1938. In the following year, he received an A.M. from Catholic University. During World War II, Miller served with the Army Air Corps and achieved the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He was assigned to China and the Burma-India Theater, and would reach the rank of Brigadier General before retiring from the military. After the war, he worked in the IRS, as an assistant professor of law in Notre Dame, and practiced law in Sioux City.

Political career

Miller was elected to the Iowa House of Representatives in 1954 and served one term during the 56th General Assembly. He then ran for State Senate and won election and re-election to serve for two terms in the upper house. He was known during his tenure as a state legislator for his criticism of the lack of efficiency in coordination and within committees needed to ensure the passage of crucial legislation. Miller unsuccessfully ran for lieutenant governor in 1958, emphasizing on institutional reforms to address and resolve inefficiencies in the state government. However, he narrowly lost in the primary to House Speaker W. L. "Bill" Mooty, who was then defeated in the general election by Democrat nominee Edward McManus.[2]

United States Senate

In 1959, Miller announced his run for United States Senate in in the 1960 elections. The seat was then held by incumbent fellow Republican Thomas Martin, who withdrew from running for re-election five months before the primary. He was chosen by the state's party convention to proceed to the general election,[3] where he faced Herschel Loveless, the incumbent Democrat governor. Running on an aggressive campaign, he won the general election by under 50,000 votes out of over 12,000,000 that were cast.[4]

Miller easily won a landslide re-election in 1966,[5] sweeping over every county in the state with strong support from farmers.

Mostly conservative, Miller opposed much of the liberal policies of the Johnson administration on domestic issues and supported the Vietnam War. He also criticized many of President Johnson's foreign policy decisions. However, Miller's support for the ongoing war during the presidency of Richard Nixon would prove to be costly for his 1972 re-election bid.

Miller mostly supported civil rights, voting in favor of the Civil Rights Act of 1964[6] as well as the Voting Rights Act of 1965,[7] though not voting on the Civil Rights Act of 1968.[8]

He faced a strong challenge in the 1972 election cycle by Democrat Richard Clarence "Dick" Clark (no relation to the entertainer). While initially expected to handily win, Clark ran on a strong campaign marked with the aggressiveness of Miller's successful 1960 bid, walking over a thousand miles across the state and campaigning against the incumbent senator's record on federal social programs and education. Miller ultimately lost to Clark by an eleven-point margin, mostly only carrying pockets of the state.[9] Nixon, who easily swept Iowa in his 49-state landslide,[10] bluntly remarked to Henry Kissinger:[11]

...we lost Margaret Smith, but she's seventy-four years old. We lost Jack Miller because he's a jacka**.

See also


  1. Jack Richard Miller. Find A Grave. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  2. IA Lt. Governor. Our Campaigns. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  3. IA US Senate - R Primary. Our Campaigns. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  4. IA US Senate. Our Campaigns. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  5. IA US Senate. Our Campaigns. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  6. HR. 7152. PASSAGE.. GovTrack.us. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  7. TO PASS S. 1564, THE VOTING RIGHTS ACT OF 1965.. GovTrack.us. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  9. IA US Senate. Our Campaigns. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  10. IA US President. Our Campaigns. Retrieved March 31, 2021.
  11. 1972-11-08_Nixon033-060.mp3. nixontapes.org. Retrieved March 31, 2021.

External links