September 17, 2019 - Issue: Vol. 165, No. 149 — Daily Edition116th Congress (2019 - 2020) - 1st Session
TRIBUTE TO MICHAEL BAUER; Congressional Record Vol. 165, No. 149
(Extensions of Remarks - September 17, 2019)
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[Extensions of Remarks] [Pages E1160-E1161] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] TRIBUTE TO MICHAEL BAUER ______ HON. JANICE D. SCHAKOWSKY of illinois in the house of representatives Tuesday, September 17, 2019 Ms. SCHAKOWSKY. Madam Speaker, I rise today to honor the memory of Michael Bauer, a larger than life, beloved Chicagoan who made an impact on the most powerful American leaders as well as the most humble and vulnerable people. Michael Bauer was only 66 years old when he passed away after a battle with cancer on August 29th. On September 3rd, hundreds gathered at Anshe Emet Synagogue on Chicago's north side to pay tribute to Michael and hear from some of the people whose lives were deeply affected by this passionate and exuberant activist. Speakers included Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, a long-time and very close friend, who Michael worked day and night to help elect, as well as Senator Dick Durbin, a friend and political ally. Governor JB Pritzker was in attendance along with several Members of Congress, including me, and many members of the State Legislature as well as officials at the County and local level. Michael had a law degree and an MBA, but his real passions were fighting for the rights of the LGBTQ community, Holocaust Remembrance and progressive politics. As a gay man, he began his activism during the ravaging days of the AIDS epidemic, but he never stopped fighting to end all forms of discrimination. He worked to change laws at every level of government to assure the right of gay couples to marry and the rights of transgender people, among other issues. Both of Michael's parents were Holocaust survivors, and he and his brother Jerry grew up without grandparents, aunts and uncles or cousins. Poignantly, Michael's beloved mother Tema Bauer, 103 years old, was at the funeral of her younger son. Not surprisingly, Michael played an important role in the establishment of the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center in Skokie, Illinois, a city that is home to many survivors. And Michael was deeply involved in politics, raising money and campaigning for his chosen candidates. His endorsement was heavily sought by Democratic candidates, but each had to pledge support for Michael's priorities, including protecting women's reproductive rights. For nearly four decades, Michael shared his life with his partner and husband Roger Simon. They were inseparable, particularly going through the difficult phases of Michael's illness--Roger always at his side, always lovingly caring for his every need. Michael was a dear, dear friend of mine. My husband and I loved to be in the same room with Michael and Roger, often watching Michael command the space--always forcefully making a point, or making a joke and being the force of nature that he was. He will be deeply missed. [[Page E1161]] ____________________