Magazine article Editor & Publisher

'L.A. Times' Will Endorse First Prez Candidates since '72

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

'L.A. Times' Will Endorse First Prez Candidates since '72

Article excerpt

After 36 years of avoiding endorsements in presidential elections, the Los Angeles Times will begin supporting candidates in both the primaries and general elections of 2008, according to Jim Newton, editor of the editorial pages.

"I think it is appropriate, it is a traditional function of the paper," Newton told E&P. "We ask readers to vote and we should put ourselves under the same function."

Newton said the paper, which has not endorsed a presidential candidate since backing Richard Nixon in 1972, would offer choices in both primaries--coming up February 5 -- and the general election in November. "I think it will change some minds," he said.

He said the paper, which had regularly endorsed Republicans in the past, stopped offering presidential campaign support after the Nixon endorsement, and the subsequent Watergate scandal, at the direction of former publisher Otis Chandler. "I think he felt somewhat uncomfortable with that endorsement and after Watergate, he considered it a way of breaking the paper's historic ties to the Republican Party," Newton explained.

Times Political blogger Andrew Malcolm, on his "Top of the Ticket" blog, revealed today that the practice would return. …

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