New York Times endorses Lautenberg

The New York Times endorsed Frank Lautenberg for a sixth term in the U.S. Senate today, lauding him for doubling Amtrak’s annual budget and being an “effective champion of banning smoking on domestic airlines and in other public places.”

The paper, however, did chastise Lautenberg for agreeing to only one televised debate.

“New Jersey voters deserved a better race this year than the nearly invisible contest between Senator Frank Lautenberg and Richard Zimmer, his Republican challenger,” read the first line of the endorsement.

The Times said that Zimmer had a “strong record for ethical reform, a clean environment, moderation on social issues and fiscal responsibility,” but that he offered few economic and Iraq policy proposals and “has lost much of the fire that marked his years as a House reformer.”

In a story today, Zimmer complained that the newspaper had not written any post-primary pieces on his general election race with Lautenberg, aside from an editorial prodding Lautenberg to debate.

New York Times endorses Lautenberg