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Letter: Paper's Endorsement Lacks Particulars

Middletown Republican Town Committee Chair: Editorial accused Mayor Giuliano of misconduct by supporting Bourne’s primary bid and endorsing Drew as its candidate for mayor.

To the Editor:

I am writing this letter to the Editor of the Middletown Press, Viktoria Sundqvist, as chairman of the Middletown Republican Town Committee in response to the editorial on Sept. 22.

EDITORIAL: Time for new leadership in Middletown 

It essentially accused our current Mayor Sebastian Giuliano of misconduct by supporting Christine Bourne’s primary bid and endorsing Dan Drew as Middletown Press’s candidate for mayor. 

Now that the primary is over, I cannot let the rumors that the Press is presenting as truths about the Republican candidates go unchallenged. No reference in the editorial did it state, if in fact it was the opinion of the Press or just Editor Viktoria Sundqvist’s personal opinion that alleges such wrong doing by Mayor Giuliano. 

I must point out to the public that the endorsement written by Sundqvist stated no reasons for why the Press was endorsing Drew or state for the public’s knowledge what exactly is his platform, no where was there an outline of his platforms printed by Sundqvist.

Dan Drew states his platform if for job creation, tax reduction and improving education. Nowhere have we read what business Mr. Drew claims he owns in Middletown. 

If the Middletown Press is wholeheartedly endorsing this candidate, why were these key points not outlined in the endorsement? We need to remember that the Democratic Party at this time has the majority on the Common Council that sets the budget; if the budget is too high; this is a direct result of the work of the democratically controlled Council. 

It was noted in the Press’s endorsement that Ms. Bourne and the city have lawsuits against the BOE but at the same time, it is not mentioned that the BOE is also suing the City of Middletown. 

Let’s not forget who initiated the very first lawsuit, the Board of Education filed it against the City of Middletown.

This endorsement lacks any journalistic motivation on the part of the Press and head editor Ms. Sundqvist to provide real facts to the public. Ms. Sundqvist’s only accomplishment with this piece of fictitious writing is that she has proven herself adept at trolling Facebook and plucking comments out of context at whim. 

Sundqvist insinuates about scandalous friendships between opposing party professionals, private citizens, and city employees as well as their kin because of handshakes, smiles or tidbits of candor on Facebook and turn it into fodder to fire at those who disagree with her golden calf, Dan Drew. 

Where is it in the city charter that states once elected, these officials would have to remove themselves from friendships and kin that they have know prior to the election if they are not in the same party.  I could insinuate a lot about Sundqvist from her blind devotion and biased writing and her relationship with the Democrats, but I will not. 

The sad part is that Ms. Sundqvist could have corroborated her story with simple phone calls to verify facts; however, adding to the surmounting evidence that the Press does sloppy and biased journalism that they are selling to the public as fair and balanced news, as many MRTC members have fund, it’s very difficult to get coverage from that Press that requires even minimal effort and writing ability. 

The Press has a decidedly biased view of politics in Middletown and the public should be aware when reading the Press that they are reading only one side of the story.

It is noticeable to everyone that reporters from the Middletown Press only sporadically attend public meetings, stay for the first 10 minutes and the misquote a few people of their choosing and head for the door. Where was the press reporter when Chairman Raczka called for a recess and then pulled the TV feed on Ed McKeon while he was speaking at the BOE meeting a week ago? 

Drew’s endorsement by Working Families stayed up for five days on the Press’s website, yet in that time I know for a fact that MRTC members sent letters to theeditor about issues concerning them and none were published or even acknowledge. 

Council 4 AFSCME endorsed Mayor Giuliano and this received no front-page coverage. The MRTC has found that often in the comment section of the online version of the Press, although comments are supposedly “screened," sexist and derogatory comments against citizen members particularly those opposing the Democratic view allowed to remain for hours. 

If there is a time lag between when comments are sent for “approval” and posted, why then should the Press allow these vicious comments even for a second?

Want to know some truths about our mayor? You will never read about in our local paper that carries our city’s name. Here are some of what has been accomplished under Giuliano’s administration because of HIS leadership.

Bottom line, the public needs to know that when they read the Middletown Press, they are reading one view point, one that which patronizes the local Democrats and rarely bothers to even shed light on views that differ from this.  Print subscriptions should be discounted by 50 percent because the Press, led by Ms. Sundqvist is selling half-truths as news. 

An editorial is protected under freedom of speech; however an editorial written with lies and allegations is slanderous, and misleading to those who rely on journalists to be accurate. Ms. Sundqvist is allowed her opinion, as I am mine, however we as a community should expect a higher level of journalism from those in the profession. 

If the Press wants to be biased, fine, just call it a tabloid or novella, and stop misleading the community into thinking they are reading and purchasing a newspaper. 

I encourage everyone who wants to hear the many viewpoints of Middletown and get accurately quoted and researched news to read the Middletown Eye Blog, The Middletown Patch or the Hartford Courant, and skip the Middletown Press and its so-called professionalism. 

If this letter to the same editor I am criticizing even makes it to print, it is a step in admitting there is a problem with the Press and that’s at least a start.

To find out more about viewpoints and accomplishments of all the MRTC endorsed candidates see our website or come by headquarters and meet us, we are here to serve.

Matt Scarrozzo, Chairman, Middletown Republican Town Committee

Matt DeRienzo September 28, 2011 at 01:29 PM
Good morning, folks - I wanted to weigh in here with one simple point: The Middletown Press's recent endorsement of Dan Drew was ONLY for the Democratic primary. It was a recommendation to city Democrats as they chose a party nominee. There is a full campaign ahead of us, and we hope to provide readers with a comprehensive report on the positions and plans of both general election candidates. And at some point, we'll decide whether to weigh in ourselves on the editorial page with an endorsement. We approach that with open minds and few preconceived notions. Part of that job is to print letters like this, and comments like those above. If anyone feels a comment was unfairly withheld, please feel free to contact me directly. Our policy is to block only comments that are obscene or unfounded personal attacks. Matt DeRienzo Group Editor, Middletown Press, New Haven Register, Register Citizen, Connecticut Magazine mderienzo@journalregister.com, 860-489-1877 Twitter.com/mattderienzo
Nancy Bates September 28, 2011 at 02:00 PM
When Democrats controlled the Mayor’s office and the Common Council, taxes rose 18 years in a row. Now, they claim they cut taxes when in fact they have been playing liar’s poker with our budget process.
Edward Dypa September 28, 2011 at 03:02 PM
I have been a registered Democrat for over 50 years. Over the past year my wife and I did a lot of soul searching and decided to switch parties. The issue that prompted that change was Dan Drew's motion to not accept the Advisory Committee's recomendation to give a Block Grant of $87,000 for refurbishment of the Eckersley Hall building/Senior Center, but to take those funds and give it to other agencies because they were "human beings". When asked; after the Council meeting, by my wife and myself why he made that remark because it was offensive to all senor citizens and he lost their vote, his comment was that he did not care if they voted for him or not. Well Mr. Drew we have over 6,000 tax paying voting senior citizens in Middletown and an equal number of baby boomers that are becoming seniors and WE ARE ALL HUMAN BEINGS. Edward Dypa; Republican Candidate for Common Council and a Senior Citizen

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