April 19, 2016
With so much of America demonstrably fed up with the way politics is practiced these days, it was disappointing to watch how the brother of retiring U.S. Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick became the front-runner in the Republican primary to replace the congressman. Brian Fitzpatrick retired from his supervisory special agent job with the FBI in California late last year and, within weeks of buying a house in Bucks County, became the favorite of the county Republican Party. State Rep. Scott Petri, who had raised nearly $300,000 for the Eighth District race, decided it was best to drop out. The district, which includes Bucks and part of Montgomery County, has survived gerrymandering elsewhere to remain the most competitive district in the commonwealth.
November 1, 2014 |
With a congressional district encompassing their entire county, Bucks residents are fortunate to speak with one voice in Washington. For a good part of the last decade, that voice has belonged to U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R., Pa.). Throw in the fact that Fitzpatrick, 51, put in a decade on the County Commission in Doylestown, and it's not surprising that he's almost viewed as a fourth commissioner. Beyond career and family roots, Fitzpatrick brings a deep understanding of county affairs to bear in representing his district, whose middle-of-the-road voters have dispatched him to Congress for one term and, after a hiatus, two more.
July 18, 2014
A story Thursday about a mental-health-treatment bill misidentified its origination and some of its sponsors. It is a federal bill, and the sponsors include U.S. Reps. Tim Murphy (R., Allegheny), Mike Fitzpatrick (R., Bucks), and Patrick Meehan (R., Delaware). The July 4 "Changing Skyline" column on the Graduate Hospital neighborhood gave an incomplete description of ward leader Marcia Wilkof's position in a 2009 zoning dispute. While she initially opposed sidewalk tables at the Sidecar Bar & Grille, she later changed her stance and endorsed the proposal for outdoor dining.
May 6, 2014 |
In their first bids for elected office, Kevin Strouse and Shaughnessy Naughton are shooting high: Each wants to be the Democrat to run against Republican incumbent Mike Fitzpatrick in Pennsylvania's Eighth Congressional District. But Strouse, 34, a former Army Ranger and CIA analyst, and Naughton, 35, a cancer researcher turned businesswoman, have been hesitant to trade juicy political haymakers. And their platforms are largely similar. So their primary race hasn't grabbed headlines like the bombastic battle for U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz's seat in Montgomery County, or two highly competitive contests in South Jersey.
April 14, 2014
After a litany of startling revelations about the National Security Agency's bulk collection of e-mail and more, most Americans will be surprised that their electronic communications are in some ways more vulnerable to snooping by garden-variety government officials. A woefully outdated law allows agencies ranging from local district attorneys' offices to the IRS to pore over the contents of e-mails without seeking court approval. The law governing e-mail access dates back to the primordial age of the technology, in 1986, when the few who used it had to download messages onto their gigantic home or office computers.
September 21, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Mike Fitzpatrick epitomizes the plight of a rare and diminishing breed in Washington: the Republican congressman who has to hew to the center to survive. Fitzpatrick, from Bucks County, represents a district that blends from suburban to rural, nearly evenly split between Republicans and Democrats. He has courted and won tea party backing while casting himself as a moderate problem-solver with the centrist group "No Labels. " So as some of the GOP's most defiant conservatives have urged a showdown over President Obama's health-care law and raised the specter of a government shutdown, Fitzpatrick has been squeezed in a political vise.
May 1, 2013 |
U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R., Bucks) announced Monday that he would cosponsor a bipartisan bill proposing mandatory secondary cockpit barriers on commercial airliners. Fitzpatrick said in a statement that the barriers would serve as a "fail-safe ... to prevent airliners from being used as weapons of terror. " The Federal Aviation Administration mandated reinforced cockpit doors after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, but Fitzpatrick said flight crew members often open those doors briefly during flights - for bathroom breaks or to get meals, for example - making the cockpit potentially vulnerable to attack.
April 6, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - The first Democrat hoping to take on Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick formally opened his campaign Thursday. Kevin Strouse, a former Army Ranger, declared his candidacy for the 2014 race in the Bucks-based Eighth Congressional District. Strouse, 33, played up his military background and outsider status in a press release announcing his first run for public office. He served three tours in Afghanistan and one in Iraq, according to his campaign, and then worked for the CIA - for six years in counterterrorism, and two investigating illicit financial activities.
November 2, 2012 |
CROSSING the Poquessing Creek into Bucks County is like stepping into a political time machine. As voters across the country throw out established politicians for more extreme options, Bucks residents seem increasingly proud of their centrism, ticket-splitting and resistance to ideological movements. The post-industrial boroughs in lower Bucks are Democratic turf, but they can stomach Republicans who are soft on labor. The rural villages of upper Bucks are generally conservative, but many went for Barack Obama in 2008.
October 9, 2012 |
Out here, they seem like reasonable people who just disagree. Away from their party-sponsored attack machines and blistering accusations, the candidates in the most hard-fought congressional race in this region listen, ask questions, and respond with measured, thoughtful answers. The incumbent Republican, U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick, talks to friendly GOP voters about lowering taxes and trimming regulations. The next night, Kathy Boockvar, the Democratic challenger in the Eighth Congressional District, which covers Bucks County and part of Montgomery, knocks on doors, promising to use her experience as a mediator as an antidote to the partisan venom in Washington.