GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Letters/My View

October 23, 2012

Letter: Mayor defends Tierney on fishing advocacy

To the Editor:

I’m planning to stay neutral in both the congressional and U.S. Senate races this year, and won’t be endorsing candidates.

Endorsements have always made me uncomfortable, because the office of the mayor has to work with whoever is elected, and with whatever political party is in favor at any particular time.

On the other hand, I do wish to be on record as defending Congressman Tierney on the issue of advocacy for the Gloucester fishing industry.

Tierney brought the congressional panel to Gloucester’s City Hall and shined the light on NOAA’s law enforcement abuses. I’ve watched him give testimony alongside Senator Brown as the pictures of the NOAA party boat -- that was funded from fines on fisherman through those same heavy-handed enforcement tactics -- were shown.

We have stood side by side at fishing rallies in Washington, D.C., as members of Congress from both parties and from states up and down the east coast have demonstrated their support of fishermen. Congressman Tierney and his staff have repeatedly met and conducted outreach with our fishermen, their families and interested stakeholders.

I have learned that no one can go it alone on the issue of protecting the fishing industry from extinction. Each elected official has a role to play, from Congressman Barney Frank to Senators Scott Brown and John Kerry to Congressman Tierney, and working together is the only solution going forward.

Therefore, I was really bothered to see Richard Tisei come into Gloucester a few weeks ago and use our fishing community to take cheap political shots at a congressman who has a long record of standing up for our fishermen.

Too many of us work too long and too hard on this complicated issue to let that go unchallenged.

CAROLYN A. KIRK

Mayor of Gloucester

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