Twenty Percent Of Newspapers That Backed Obama In 2008 Have Flipped To Romney
The Register isn’t the only newspaper to abandon Obama this year after eagerly endorsing four years ago.
In fact, of those major metro dailies that have announced their picks, more than one in five that had previously backed Obama are now pushing Romney, according to a tally by the American Presidency Project. Most, like the Register, had a history of endorsing Democratic presidents. …
Newspaper endorsements may not mean much these days, given their declining readership and influence. But they clearly show the disaffection many liberals have with Obama’s economic stewardship.
And they are a good indicator of where the political momentum lies, which as the election draws near, is clearly with Romney.
At Hot Air, Ed Morrissey wonders how much newspaper endorsements even matter any more. “Aren’t these somewhat of an anachronism — and more potentially damaging to the newspapers themselves than to those candidates whom they didn’t endorse?” he asks.
Perhaps, but I think he’s looking at it the wrong way. It’s not that the shifting endorsements of these newspapers will influence voters to flip to Romney. These newspapers flipping is a reflection of an electorate that has shifted away from Obama.
My sense of modern newspaper endorsements is that they are more about editorial boards trying to pick a winner than helping get who they thin is the right candidate elected. Case in point, here in North Dakota the very liberal Fargo Forum editorial board has so far endorsed a straight Republican ticket, specifically praising the limited government mindset of many of the candidates. If the Forum were endorsing based on the ideology/policies they think would best serve the state and the nation they’d have endorsed Democrats.
But I don’t think that’s what guides them. I think what guides them is a desire to be seen backing the winner.
This no doubt isn’t true of all newspapers – I think true-blue newspapers like the New York Times will always stick to their ideological guns – but for many smaller, more regional publications I think it’s become all about who they think will win.
Thus, a 20% flip on endorsements from Obama to the Republican candidate is indicative of where those boards think this race is heading.Tags: Barack Obama, mitt romney, newspapers