Bob Bacon is the Democratic candidate running for the Colorado
Senate in District 14 against Republican candidate Ray Martinez and
Libertarian candidate Mark Brophy.
Democrat Peggy Reaves now holds the seat, but she is stepping
down because of term limits.
Bacon was born in Galesburg, Ill. He graduated with a bachelor’s
degree from Illinois State University in 1957 and received a
master’s degree in history from University of Northern Colorado in
Bacon was a teacher in the Poudre School District for 31 years
and at Front Range Community College for four years. Bacon served
three terms as a Colorado State representative from House District
53 from 1997 to 2002. He is retired.
This interview was conducted on Oct. 15. Bacon met the Collegian
at Rocky Mountain Bagel Works to answer some questions about the
Q: What is the most important issue you want to address as
Election Day is now less than three weeks away?
A: I think for Fort Collins and the CSU community it’s state
funding for higher education in the state. It’s critical to Fort
Collins because at least a quarter of the jobs are directly or
indirectly tied to the CSU funding and the students. This is the
major issue and even though one senator out of 35 and one
representative in the entire general assembly out of 100 can’t
affect the change by himself or herself. Certainly I want to add
the voice to modifying (the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights) so that
there are resources so that higher education can get its fair
Q: What can you do to help bring jobs to this community as well
as improve the economy?
A: The major factor in bringing jobs to Fort Collins is the many
things CSU does for the community. One is that it provides
research. And other employers come here because they want to hire
the educated and trained workforce the university provides … For
us in Fort Collins the economy is so dependent on CSU, any
improvement in our economy is dependent on CSU’s viability and
Q: Speaking of the community, what do you think about the
incidents and deaths involving alcohol that have occurred at CSU
and CU lately?
A: It’s really a hard question. I know there is a task force
working on it now and many young people in the college age group
think they are invulnerable … Oftentimes (people) don’t recognize
dangers and they ignore real dangers when they ought to be more
cautious. But I think that there can be greater programs for drug
and alcohol consumption education so people in certain age groups
can be better educated so they don’t binge drink … it is
unfortunate that we have had these deaths and it is not an easy
thing to solve. The legislature cannot pass one piece of
legislation in order to prevent these things. What I fear mostly is
there are some people, even one of the candidates in the race, the
libertarian that uses this as an example that students are nothing
but partiers and drunkards so let’s not provide a college education
for them. And, of course, that is not true.
Q: How could you help people in this community and Colorado get
access to health care?
A: It’s one of those nagging problems not only for Colorado but
nationally … the unfortunate part is that when you graduate, to
buy heath insurance on the market is going to be extremely costly.
And many people in your age group don’t buy it and then if
something does occur and you go to the emergency room and then in
effect all of us who are paying insurance then are picking up the
costs for that. And you know some people have said that all of us
are paying for everybody’s care in one way or anther. But the
unfortunate part is that sometimes because of the lack of primary
care for allowing conditions to persist and be exasperated so that
the costs are going to be much greater than they thought … there
are certain things this state can do such as bulk buying of drugs
and using them for Medicaid can reduce the costs. Perhaps in
allowing for some sort of legislation for bulk buying of insurance
services for small business … ultimately it’s going to have to be
a national solution in order to deal with this issue.
Q: What is your stance on the environment?
A: I’m for it … Colorado is one of the most beautiful places
on earth. It draws a lot of tourists so it has an economic value;
many of us came here because of the environment.
Q: How do you feel about the “Ray Likes To Travel” commercials
and pamphlets being distributed lately?
A: If it were left to my campaign I would not have done it. But
of the realities of our world is that we have, at the national
level they’re called 527s, in Colorado they’re so-called education
committees. They collect money and we don’t know where it comes
from and they spend money on what we don’t know but they campaign
for and against. Sometimes I am fearful of the groups campaigning
for me. They might be saying things I didn’t want to say … I
would like for us to stick on the issues.
Q: Do you have anything you have to ad?
A: …I think as citizens we need to determine what it is that
we want to do together. And use government in order to effect
that…another issue is this whole idea of democracy. You’re not
going to have a free society that is participating in its own
direction without an educated population. So education is extremely
important for that … I do not want to leave the world in worse
condition for you than when I found it.