By Charlie Sahner
Published On: Fri, Jan 5th, 2018 in the New Hope Free Press
Progressive activist Steve Bacher will kick off his campaign to unseat Brian Fitzpatrick on Saturday at 10 a.m. at The Temperance House in Newtown, organizers announced Friday. He will face Rachel Reddick and a rumored third candidate in the Democratic Primary Election being held May 15.
Pennsylvania’s 1st congressional district includes Bucks County and part of Montgomery County, and Republican Brian Fitzpatrick has represented the district since 2017.
Bacher, 55, is former vice chair of the Newtown Democratic Club, and served on the Newtown Township Environmental Advisory Council, and co-founded Bucks Environmental Action, a county-wide coalition of environmental and social justice groups. A longtime Newtown resident, Bacher, his wife, and two children currently reside in Lower Makefield.
We caught up with the candidate on Friday, and asked him why he’s about to enter the race for Congress.
“It’s a combination of the daily outrages from President Trump and the daily silence from Brian Fitzpatrick and the Republican Congress,” Bacher explained.
The candidate says he was alarmed by local reports of hate speech following Trump’s election.
“I went to Fitzpatrick’s website to see what he was saying about hate speech, and there was nothing regarding racist incidents in our district,” recalled Bacher. “He seems to avoid serious issues, and remain silent, and we need to speak out.”
Bacher’s extensive background in environmental issues is readily evident, and priorities if elected would include addressing climate change.
“There are some bipartisan proposals, like ways to put a price on carbon,” Bacher said. “Citizens’ Climate Lobby is a nonprofit that’s advocating for collecting money based on tons of carbon put into the air, with the money given back to each American as a dividend. This would be a way to smoothly accelerate the transition needed to renewable energy to stop climate change before it reaches point of no return.”
Steve Bacher, age 55, has a 30-year career of public service in the higher education, nonprofit and government sectors. He served for seven years as the first director of digital marketing for Bucks County Community College, five years as first executive director of Cape May’s Center for Community Arts, and four years as managing director of Vortex Repertory Company in Austin, Texas, which he co-founded. He also served as an Intergovernmental Relations Officer at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in Washington, D.C., during the Clinton-Gore Administration, and as a grant writer for the City of Jersey City.
Bacher is a member of Newtown Friends Meeting (Quakers), and serves on its Children’s Religious Education and Peace and Service Committees.