Debate Announcement

Salem News, Lowell Sun to team on congressional debates


With the Sixth Congressional District race generating widespread interest, The Salem News and The Sun of Lowell have agreed to join forces to co-sponsor two candidate debates.

The Sun will host a debate for Democratic primary candidates on Thursday, Aug. 14, at Middlesex Community College’s Bedford campus. The News will host a general election debate on the North Shore, at a date and time to be determined prior to the Nov. 4 election. The Salem debate will likely include a third media partner.

Both events are open to the public.

The historic collaboration brings together dominant community newspapers in their respective markets, which span the Sixth District and its two counties, Essex and Middlesex.

The Salem News is the leading print and digital news operation on the North Shore. Its core communities, all in the Sixth District, include Salem, Peabody, Beverly and Danvers. It sister newspapers are the Eagle-Tribune of North Andover, the Gloucester Daily Times, and The Daily News of Newburyport, all of which touch on Sixth District communities.

The Sun, owned by Digital First Media, serves 14 core communities in the Merrimack Valley, including Sixth District towns of Bedford, Burlington, Billerica, Tewksbury and Wilmington.

Sun editor Jim Campanini and David Olson, editor of The Salem News, have been working on the idea of a collaboration since late May.

“This is a key congressional race being covered by two great community newspapers. I approached David and told him that our loyal readers and the district’s voters would benefit immensely from a joint effort and he agreed,” Campanini said.

“The Sixth is one of the most diverse districts in the state,” Olson said. “It has strong, growing immigrant populations and old New England small towns. It’s a center for industries as old as commercial fishing and as new as biotech. Collaborating with the Sun on these debates helps ensure voters from all constituencies get to hear the candidates on issues important to them.”

The leading Democratic primary candidates are U.S. Rep. John Tierney, a nine-term incumbent from Salem; Seth Moulton, a Harvard graduate, former U.S. Marine and businessman who lives in Salem; and immigration lawyer and businesswoman Marisa DeFranco of Middleton. The winner of the Tuesday, Sept. 9, primary will face Republican Richard Tisei in the general election.


Read the original announcement here.