Today the Chicago Tribune joined the growing list of major newspapers to endorse Barack Obama for US President. The paper, which is the one I grew up with, said it was proud to endorse him.
This is an historic endorsement: The Tribune has never endorsed a Democrat before; their own editorial points this out and notes that in 1872 they endorsed Independent Horace Greeley who was later endorsed by the Democrats, and in 1912 they endorsed former Republican President Theodore Roosevelt who was running on a third party ticket. In both cases, this was because of problems with the Republican Party, and that plays a factor this year, too.
The Tribune says that the Republicans have strayed from their ideals, and it’s impossible to argue with that. But they also point out that Obama has a storng partner in his running mate, Joe Biden, while McCain passed over experienced, capable Republican women (and men, for that matter) to pick the totally unprepared and unqualified Sarah Palin. Biden would be ready to become president, should that be necessary, Palin would not, and in this dangerous world, that’s not acceptable. As the editorial put it, “McCain failed in his most important executive decision… [He] put his campaign before his country.”
The editorial dismisses many of the Republican talking points, and they’re clearly in a position to be able to evaluate him. In fact, they show a strong faith in Barack and his judgment, intellect and ability to lead. It’s a ringing endorsement.
I completely agree with their endorsement. And, it’s nice to be able to do that for a change.
Update Saturday evening: Now the Los Angeles Times has also endorsed Barack Obama. The paper hasn't endorsed a candidate for president since 1972, when it endorsed Richard M. Nixon for re-election.