James Bilbray has died at the age of 83. The cause of death was not immediately made clear to the general public.

James Bilbray rose to become one of his state's most prominent politicians during the 1980s and the 1990s. That state being Nevada, of which he was very proud to be a native of.

Bilbray eventually became one of the most influential members of the Nevada Legislature. He later became a member of the United States Congress, followed by a member of two different Presidential administrations, both Republican and Democratic.

James Bilbray

Bilbray's first attempt at the United States House of Representatives was in 1972.

The race was for what was then Nevada's single seat in the House. Bilbray defeated incumbent Walter S. Baring Jr. in the Democratic primary. But he would lose to Republican David Towell in the general election.

In 1980, he was elected to the Nevada Senate for the first time. Eventually, Bilbray would be named the chairman of the Senate's Taxation Committee. By 1986, Nevada had been allotted two seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. That year, Harry Reid wasn't running for re-election to the House from the state's 1st District. Instead, he was a candidate for the United States Senate, a race he would win. Later, Reid would become the Senate majority leader. Bilbray won the election for Reid's seat and succeeded him in the U.S.

House of Representatives.

In 1994, Bilbray was defeated for re-election amidst a dominant election cycle for Republicans. He would be re-elected to the House three times. Along the way, he chaired the Taxation, Tourism, and Procurement subcommittee of the House Small Business Committee.

After his re-election loss, he went into private practice as a lawyer.

Discuss this news on Eunomia

In 2005, he returned to the federal government as a committee member tasked with consolidating military bases.

The following year, Bilbray was appointed to the Board of Governors of the United States Postal Service. He later served as vice-chair and acting chair of the board before leaving it in 2016.

James Bilbray was a veteran of the United States Army.

He attended the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, of which he became a member of the Board of Regents. Bilbray went on to receive degrees in government and law from American University. Before going into elected politics, he was deputy district attorney of Clark County, Nevada, followed by juvenile court chief legal counsel in the same county. He was a Las Vegas municipal judge between his first Congressional loss and his time in the state's Senate.

Was a member of a political family

Bilbray and his wife, Michaelene, had four children. A son would predecease him. One daughter, Shannon Bilbray-Axelrod, is a member of the Nevada Assembly. Another daughter became principal of an elementary school named after her father.

His cousin, Brian Bilbray, is also a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives. A Republican, Brian was elected from California. Originally from the 49th District, late from the 50th District. He was a vocal proponent of immigration reform during his time in Congress.