The Congress: Mister Sam

In Dallas' Baylor University Medical Center last week, two elderly ladies emerged from a hushed, darkened room. Their eyes told the story: in the quiet room lay their brother, Sam Rayburn, 79, in a drugged sleep, beyond the help of medicine or surgery. A biopsy had disclosed that the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives was ravaged with cancer and had little time left to live.

Persuasion & Reason. Samuel Taliaferro (pronounced Tolliver) Rayburn has served in the House longer than any other man—nearly 49 years, more than a quarter of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!