Campaign notebook

Campaign notebook: Lynch’s policies go online

US Representative Stephen F. Lynch, who has been leaning heavily on his background as a former ironworker as he runs for US Senate, is trying to beef up his policy credentials with a series of new videos in which he discusses his views on issues.

In the nine videos, posted on Lynch’s campaign website, the South Boston Democrat speaks about a range of issues — including some, such as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights, that have not been part of his traditional portfolio.

The effort comes as Lynch tries to broaden his profile beyond his base in South Boston and challenge his rival for the Democratic Senate nomination, Edward J. Markey, who is known for delving into policy minutiae over his 36 years in Congress.


The videos show Lynch speaking about Afghanistan, gun violence, abortion, and trade agreements, among other issues. While the format may be more engaging for some voters than the dry policy papers candidates often release, the videos do not always include deep policy details.

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They do, however, allow Lynch to address some of the policy areas that are potentially problematic for him as he woos the liberal voters who dominate Democratic primaries in Massachusetts.

Conor Yunits, a Lynch spokesman, said the videos are designed to let voters hear directly from the candidate. He said the campaign plans to release more in the coming days.

“I know I don’t fit a lot of ‘bumper sticker’ stereotypes on policy,” Lynch said in a statement. “I also know there are a lot of misconceptions out there about where I stand on issues and why. Presenting my positions through video allows voters to hear my views directly from me, and I think it will help them make an informed decision on Election Day.”

In the clip about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights, Lynch, who has had a frosty relationship with gay rights activists, speaks about a cousin who is gay and says either “equal protection means equal protection, or it doesn’t.” He does not mention gay marriage directly legislation.


In the video about abortion, Lynch, who has softened his longtime opposition to legalized abortion in recent weeks, describes himself as “pro-life” but says he “doesn’t believe that attacking Roe v. Wade is part of any solution.”

Markey’s website features a more traditional section of written explanations of his views on issues.

Michael Levenson

GOP, Democratic candidates set Senate debate plansThe three Republican candidates for the US Senate, fresh off securing places on the April 30 primary ballot, will meet for their first debate next Tuesday at Stonehill College in Easton.

The forum will mark the first time state Representative Daniel B. Winslow, former US attorney Michael J. Sullivan, and former Navy SEAL Gabriel E. Gomez will face off in a formal public setting.

The debate will begin at 7 p.m. and be live-streamed on the website of WCVB-TV, according to Peter Ubertaccio, a Stonehill College political scientist, who is helping to organize the event and will serve as its moderator. There are currently no plans to carry the event on television or radio.


The candidates will take questions from Adam Reilly of WGBH, Janet Wu of WCVB, and Chris Burrell of the Patriot Ledger.

On the Democratic side, US representatives Edward J. Markey and Stephen F. Lynch have agreed to six debates — three general-issue debates in Boston, Worcester, and Springfield and three more on specific issues in Lowell, New Bedford, and an unnamed community.

Michael Levenson