Don Bacon (politician)

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Don Bacon
Donald Bacon Official House Photo.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Nebraska's 2nd district
Assumed office
January 3, 2017
Preceded by Brad Ashford
Personal details
Born Donald John Bacon
(1963-08-16) August 16, 1963 (age 55)
Momence, Illinois, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Angie Bacon
Children 4
Residence Papillion, Nebraska, U.S.
Alma mater Northern Illinois University
Website House website
Military service
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Air Force
Years of service 1985–2014
Rank US-O7 insignia.svg Brigadier General

Donald John Bacon (born August 16, 1963) is a retired United States Air Force Brigadier General and current U.S. Representative for Nebraska's 2nd congressional district.

Education and military career

Bacon is a native of Illinois.[1] He attended Northern Illinois University and then gained his commission through Reserve Officers' Training Corps. He has been stationed in Arizona, Iraq, Germany and Nebraska. Bacon has earned masters degrees from the University of Phoenix and the National War College. His final assignment was as Director of ISR Strategy, Plans, Doctrine and Force Development, AF/A2, Headquarters U.S. Air Force at the Pentagon from July 2012 to 2014.[2] He picked up the nickname "Bits"—a reference to his last name.[1]

In 2015, at the age of 50, Bacon retired from the Air Force.[3] During his 29.5 years in the Air Force, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, two Legion of Merits, and two Bronze Stars, and was selected as Europe's top Air Force Wing Commander in 2009.[4] He served as an aide to U.S. Representative Jeff Fortenberry and as an assistant professor at Bellevue University.[5]

Bacon during his time in the U.S. Air Force.

U.S. House of Representatives


Bacon won the Republican Party primary election for the U.S. House of Representatives in Nebraska's 2nd congressional district in the 2016 elections.[6]

The general election race was characterized as a tossup, with Democratic incumbent Brad Ashford being seen as having the edge.[7] Bacon faced and defeated Ashford in the general election on November 8, 2016.[8][9] Bacon received 49.4% of the vote to Ashford's 47.3%.[10][11] He is the only Republican who defeated an incumbent Democrat in the 2016 House elections.


Bacon was assigned to the House Agriculture Committee.[12] He also sits on the House Committee on Homeland Security and House Armed Services Committee.[13]

He is a member of the Republican Main Street Partnership[14] and the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus.[15]

As of January 2018, Bacon had voted with his party in 95.7% of votes so far in the current session of Congress and voted in line with President Trump's position in 96.6% of votes.[16][17]

Political positions

Vote Smart Political Courage Test

Vote Smart, a non-profit, non-partisan research organization that collects and distributes information on candidates for public office in the United States, "researched presidential and congressional candidates' public records to determine candidates' likely responses on certain key issues." According to Vote Smart's 2016 analysis, Bacon generally supports pro-life legislation, opposes an income tax increase, opposes federal spending and supports lowering taxes as a means of promoting economic growth, opposes requiring states to adopt federal education standards, supports building the Keystone Pipeline, opposes the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions, opposes gun-control legislation, supports repealing the Affordable Care Act, opposes same-sex marriage, supports requiring immigrants who are unlawfully present to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship, supports increased American intervention in Iraq and Syria beyond air support, and supports allowing individuals to divert a portion of their Social Security taxes into personal retirement accounts.[18]


In August 2017, Bacon and five of his House colleagues urged President Trump to allow DACA youths, also known as "Dreamers," to remain in the United States until some permanent solution could be arranged. "Children brought to the United States at a young age did not have a choice in the matter," the Congress members wrote the President. "They did not willingly seek to violate American statutes when they traveled with their families across our borders, as the alternative was often life without primary caregivers." He has said that he would "fight like heck so that people under DACA will never have to fear deportation again."[19][20]

In April 2016, Bacon re-introduced the Kerrie Orozco Act, which would "allow the spouses of first responders, killed in the line of duty, access to a quicker process of becoming an American citizen." He explained that it would "honor one of the heroes of the Omaha Police Department and help the surviving spouse, child, or parent of our brave first responders by allowing them to still get citizenship even after the death of first responder loved ones." The act was named for a first responder who died while her husband, Hector, was waiting for his green card.[21]


At a Brookings Institution event in October 2017, Bacon discussed the importance of military readiness, noting that at the beginning of his career U.S. Air Force crews had flown two hours to every one flown by Russia or China, but were now flying about one-third as many hours as they had then. "When you fly one-third of the hours, people get out because it's not rewarding," said Bacon. He also said that the "gravest threat" to military preparedness was the "partisan divide" in government, which had prevented necessary increases in spending.[22]

In addition, he pointed to the Russian threat, underscoring the need to respond to the challenge posed by both Russia and China in outer space as well as in cyberspace. Bacon considers a partnership with China possible despite its regional power ambitions, but says "Russia is an adversary" that is "working against our goals." He finds Russia's activity in Ukraine and the Balkans disturbing and believes in a stronger U.S. military presence in the latter region.[23]

In November 2017, Bacon told an Electronic Warfare (EW) conference that the U.S. military needed "to elevate the electromagnetic spectrum to an official domain of warfare - alongside land, sea, air, space, and cyberspace - and appoint general officers as EW advocates in all four services and to the joint staff." He said that when he was "a young EWO (Electronic Warfare Officer), there was no doubt we had the best electronic warfare capabilities in the world," but that after the fall of the USSR "we let it atrophy for a decade-and-a-half." It was now time, he said, to push the effort on this front "into high gear." He has been described as "probably the most qualified congressman" on the subject of EW.[24]

Health care

Bacon opposes abortion.[25] He says that care currently being provided at Planned Parenthood could be better delivered through community health care centers that do not also provide abortion services.[26]

Bacon favors repealing the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).[27] He was supportive of the March 2017 version of American Health Care Act, the GOP's replacement plan for Obamacare.[28] On May 4, 2017, Bacon voted to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and pass the American Health Care Act.[29][30]

Foreign policy

He is a steadfast backer of Israel, and supports the United States recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital.[31]


In March 2017, Bacon voted to return jurisdiction over the internet to the Federal Trade Commission[32] by reversing an October 2016 rule that subjected online activity to control by the Federal Communications Commission. Bacon's vote was in line with the position of the United States Chamber of Commerce on this rule.[33]

Personal life

Bacon and his wife, Angie, have four children and live in Papillion, Nebraska.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Citing military and foreign policy as priorities, retired Brig. Gen. Don Bacon announces bid for Congress". Retrieved March 25, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "Brigadier General Donald J. Bacon". United States Air Force.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "Gen. Bacon set to retire". The Daily Journal. Retrieved March 25, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "Biography". Biography. Retrieved September 21, 2017.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Robynn Tysver / World-Herald staff. "Don Bacon is a 'fresh face' in politics but hardly a political neophyte". Retrieved January 7, 2017.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. Don Walton/Lincoln Journal Star. "Retired general bids for Ashford House seat". Fremont Tribune. Retrieved March 25, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. Loizzo, Mike (September 26, 2016). "Nebraska's 2nd Congressional District Race Remains a Toss-Up". Nebraska Radio Network. Retrieved December 25, 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. Williams, Jack (November 9, 2016). "Bacon ousts Ashford in Second Congressional District". Retrieved December 25, 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "Bacon wins Nebraska House Seat After Ashford Concedes". Politico. November 9, 2016. Retrieved December 25, 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "Nebraska U.S. House 2nd District Results: Don Bacon Wins". The New York Times. November 15, 2016. Retrieved 15 November 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. "Official Report of the Board of State Canvassers" (PDF). Nebraska Secretary of State. Retrieved December 7, 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. Morton, Joseph (January 11, 2017). "Don Bacon, who represents the mostly urban and suburban 2nd District, gets seat on House Agriculture Committee". Omaha World-Herald. Retrieved January 26, 2017.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. "Official Committee Assignments, 115th Congress". Office of the Clerk, US House of Representatives. Retrieved September 21, 2017.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. "Members". Republican Mains Street Partnership. Retrieved 19 September 2017.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. "Climate Solutions Caucus expands to 24". Retrieved September 21, 2017.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. Bycoffe, Aaron (2017-09-14). "Tracking Don Bacon In The Age Of Trump". FiveThirtyEight. Retrieved 2017-09-14.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. Willis, Derek. "Represent". ProPublica. Retrieved 2017-09-14.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  18. "Don Bacon's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)". Vote Smart. Retrieved 10 January 2018.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  19. Walton, Don; Rep. Don Bacon urges Trump to protect DACA youths; Lincoln Journal Star; August 25, 2017;
  20. Gilchrist, Logan; Don Bacon spoke at UNL seminar, students skeptical about his motivations; The Daily Nebraskan; October 19, 2017;
  21. Don Bacon to re-introduce Kerrie Orozco Act; 3NewsNow; April 5, 2017;
  22. Livingston, Ian; Reps. Don Bacon and Rick Larsen share their views on defense priorities and challenges; Brookings; October 24, 2017;
  23. Gilchrist, Logan; Don Bacon spoke at UNL seminar, students skeptical about his motivations; The Daily Nebraskan; October 19, 2017;
  24. Freedberg Jr, Sydney J; Spectrum (EW) Should Be A Warfighting Domain: Rep. Bacon; Breaking Defense; November 29, 2017;
  25. Tysver, Robynn (April 26, 2016). "Don Bacon is a 'fresh face' in politics but hardly a political neophyte". Omaha World Herald. Retrieved 10 January 2018.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  26. Morton, Joseph (November 4, 2016). "Don Bacon denounces claims in Democrats' health care fliers, calls one attack ad 'very vile'". Omaha World Herald. Retrieved 10 January 2018.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  27. Bureau, Joseph Morton / World-Herald. "Affordable Care Act repeal on fast track, but GOP replacement not yet in sight". Retrieved 2017-04-01.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  28. Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1/Identifiers at line 47: attempt to index field 'wikibase' (a nil value).
  29. "How the House voted to pass the GOP health-care bill". Washington Post. Retrieved 2017-05-04.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  30. Staff, C. N. N. "How every member voted on health care bill". CNN. Retrieved 2017-05-04.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  31. Magid, Aaron. "Meet the 'Most Kosher Bacon' in Congress". Jewish Insider. Retrieved 2017-09-21.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  32. "Rep. Bacon votes to reaffirm FTC's Privacy Rules Process". House of Representatives Press Release. 2017-03-29. Retrieved 2017-12-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  33. "Here are the Facts. Congress Did Not Give Away Your Internet Privacy". United States Chamber of Commerce. 2017-03-31. Retrieved 2017-12-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Brad Ashford
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Nebraska's 2nd congressional district

United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Jodey Arrington
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Jim Banks