'L.A. Times' Backs Obama and McCain -- First Endorsements for President since 1972

Editor & Publisher, February 1, 2008 | Go to article overview

'L.A. Times' Backs Obama and McCain -- First Endorsements for President since 1972


In a move that might pick a Democratic nominee, the Los Angeles Times has "strongly" endorsed Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton in an editorial that will appear on Sunday, two days before Super Tuesday.

The paper also offered a ringing endorsement to John McCain, who is strongly favored in the state, saying that he "opposes abortion and rejects the right of gays and lesbians to marry -- two positions we reject. He supports the war in Iraq, whereas we see this nation's interests better served by a prompt and orderly withdrawal of U.S. forces.

"But the Arizona senator's conservatism is, if not always to our liking, at least genuine. It reflects his fundamental individualism, spanning his distrust of big government, his support for immigration reform and his insistence on a sound American foreign policy."

The Democratic race in delegate-rich California has tightened in recent days so the endorsement could be key. It is all the more significant since, as E&P noted in a Joe Strupp story two weeks ago, the paper has not endorsed for president since 1972, following the embarrassments of the Nixon years.

Today, the Oakland Tribune also endorsed Obama, giving him a virtual sweep of the largest major newspapers across the state. Among others were the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Jose Mercury, the Sacramento Bee, the Modesto Bee, the Santa Cruz Sentinel, and San Francisco Bay Guardian.

An excerpt from the L.A Times' Obama editorial follows.

To comment or read more, go to E&P Editor Greg Mitchell's blog.

*

Democrats preparing to vote in Tuesday's California primary can mark their ballots with confidence, knowing that either candidate would make a strong nominee and, if elected, a groundbreaking leader and capable president. But just because the ballot features two strong candidates does not mean that it is difficult to choose between them. We urge voters to make the most of this historic moment by choosing the Democrat most focused on steering the nation toward constructive change: We strongly endorse Barack Obama.

The U.S. senator from Illinois distinguishes himself as an inspiring leader who cuts through typical internecine campaign bickering and appeals to Americans long weary of divisive and destructive politics. …

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