Thank you Tom! Another perspicacious Tom Hauck Letter to the Gloucester Daily Times (May 16 editorial page), calling them once again on their uber-conservative far-right editorial bias:
To the editor:
Just when you think it’s safe to read the Times again, another zinger appears that gets reasonable readers riled up. The case in point is the editorial of May 11 entitled “Partisanship has no place in League of Women Voters.” The issue is a series of TV ads run by the national and state League of Women Voters criticizing Senator Scott Brown for a vote he cast on four environmental bills. The Times characterized the ads as “nasty,” “shameful,” and “vicious.” To support the editorial, the Times quoted a press release from Senator Brown’s office and provided a statement from Tim Buckley, who is the state GOP spokesperson. As would be expected, Senator Brown and Mr. Buckley thought the ads attacking the senator were unfair and partisan.
For some reason the Times either failed to contact the state or national LWV to get their side of the story, or did not report the results of any attempted contact. Therefore it is incumbent upon readers of the Times to do their own investigating.
The ads are running in Massachusetts and also in Missouri, where they target Senator Claire McCaskill, who is a Democrat. Here is what Elisabeth MacNamara, national president of the League of Women Voters, says on the LVW website: “Air pollution is a life or death issue. Senators Brown and McCaskill cast dangerous votes that put public health at risk…Voting to block clean air standards is bad for America and deadly for many Americans.” The LVW website also says, “The campaign includes 30-second spots that point to the public health consequences of the Senators’ April 6 votes. The ads depict a child suffering from respiratory illness and ask viewers to consider the votes and ‘imagine what it could’ve done – to her.’”
The website states that the League of Women Voters of Massachusetts and the League of Women Voters Missouri joined in this effort, and that the League has been a strong and active supporter of the Clean Air Act.
The League’s ad campaign, which targets both a Republican and a Democrat, is non-partisan. It does not present anything that is not factual: both Senators Brown and McCaskill voted in favor of four amendments that would have crippled the bipartisan Clean Air Act, which was signed into law in 1970 by President Richard Nixon, a Republican. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, said, “The Senate stood up for children and families by defeating four amendments that would have interfered with EPA’s efforts to protect the health and safety of the American public. The Clean Air Act has had strong bipartisan support since it was passed overwhelmingly by Congress and signed into law by President Nixon. The American people support EPA’s efforts to safeguard us from polluters.”
If the Times chooses to adopt an editorial policy that is to the right of the majority of Cape Ann voters, that is the paper’s prerogative. But to present an editorial that parrots the public statements of one political party is reprehensible. Readers of the Times deserve the full story.
Thanks for doing this work, Tom! Looking forward to arriving in Annisquam soon, where I always feel the air is cleaner.