By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

The congressman who wasn’t there

Every member of the Massachusetts delegation except one has signed a letter to New York Times Co. chairman Arthur Sulzberger Jr. asking that he keep the Boston Globe open past the Thursday deadline he’s set for the Globe’s unions to come up with $20 million in concessions.

The one: Rep. Stephen Lynch of South Boston.

The letter, signed by Sens. Ted Kennedy and John Kerry as well as the other nine House members, reads as follows:

Dear Mr. Sulzberger:

We are concerned over the future of The Boston Globe in light of reports that the New York Times Company is seriously considering shutting the doors of our hometown newspaper.

For well over a century, The Globe has been an immense asset to Boston and all of New England. It’s been the paper of record; a force for positive change and civic activism; a cultural touch point; and a workplace that has always valued the contributions of every employee from typesetters, press operators, mailers and drivers to reporters and editors. It’s been a consistent source of news for the people of Massachusetts, and a constant reminder that the press serves an indispensable role in our free society.

We understand the serious financial challenges facing the newspaper industry today. The ramifications, however, of closing The Boston Globe would far outlive the current recession. The Globe has a long-established public trust with this community and the New England region. Its closure would be an irreplaceable loss for our city, state, and region and for countless readers across the nation.

The hard-working men and women of The Boston Globe know better than anyone that sacrifices will be necessary to continue the newspaper. We urge you to treat The Globe fairly and to work together on a solution to this immediate crisis that preserves the newspaper for the future.

We appreciate your consideration of this request and we look forward to discussing The Globe’s future with you at your convenience.

I’ve sent an e-mail to the Boston Newspaper Guild office, which released the letter, asking about Lynch’s absence. I’ll send an e-mail to Lynch as soon as I’ve posted this. If I hear anything, I’ll let you know.

Of course, it hardly needs to be said that the letter is another example of the awkward embrace between Globe staff members and the political establishment that we’ve seen from the moment that this drama began to unfold — something Jessica Heslam and Hillary Chabot wrote about in the Boston Herald last Friday.

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3 Comments

  1. Patricia of Trakai

    Can the Herald possibly write about the Globe without alliteration? Either the Globe is the “beleaguered broadsheet” or the “money-bleeding broadsheet.” Enough already.

  2. Buhdayduh

    I guess it wouldn’t have anything to do with South Boston’s history with the Globe.

  3. NewsHound

    I wonder if Ted Kennedy would be such a lion about saving the Globe if he were to find out his blind trust sold millions in oil rights in Oklahoma and the Midwest only to lend the money to the New York Times Company or better still – take the Globe off their hands so the blind trust can keep it going.Or if Barney Frank would want to sell all his tax-free bonds to buy stock in the New York Times Company.

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