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Originally published Tuesday, June 2, 2009 at 12:21 PM

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The Bulletin in Philly is suspending publication

A Philadelphia newspaper founded in 2004 with the goal of providing a conservative voice has suspended publication, the publisher said.

Associated Press Writer


A Philadelphia newspaper founded in 2004 with the goal of providing a conservative voice has suspended publication, the publisher said.

The Bulletin couldn't afford to operate any longer, Publisher Thomas Rice told employees. Rice wouldn't go into detail Tuesday, but confirmed The Bulletin had "temporarily" suspended publication.

Employees were called into a Monday afternoon meeting and told they were being laid off, said John Rossomando, managing editor.

The group was told that even though advertising sales were showing some signs of recovery, the newspaper's costs had proven insurmountable. Though looking for other opportunities, Rossomando said he is "cautiously optimistic" the newspaper can be revived.

"If I have pressure, I can't imagine what Tom is going through, because this was his baby from day one," Rossomando said.

Rice launched the newspaper with the historic Philadelphia name in 2004 with a commitment to what he said would be "old-school" journalism and an alternative point of view. Its Web site promised unbiased news, fun for kids and "biting, conservative commentary for adults."

Rossomando said he didn't believe the change in political climate brought the venture to a halt.

"We constantly have people calling us telling us they love the paper," he said. "I think it's just the economy."

Rice, an investment banker, had purchased the rights to the name from the family that owned the earlier Philadelphia Bulletin from 1895 until it closed in 1982. That beloved publication had once been the nation's largest afternoon newspaper.

The new Bulletin's roster of reporters was in single digits, but it carried an array of commentary including syndicated columns by Chuck Norris, Oliver North, Patrick J. Buchanan and, until his death in 2008, Heritage Foundation co-founder Paul Weyrich.

A Bulletin article was cited in a February editorial in The Wall Street Journal. And the newspaper won two awards in the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors writing contest in April: a second place for investigative reporting by newspapers with circulation below 15,000, and a first in the sports/outdoors column category.

"For our little operation, I think we got a lot of recognition," Rossomando said.


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