Chicago Tribune endorses Obama (first time they ever endorsed a democrat)

But hey, McCain gets the nod from the Dallas Morning News!

Seriously you can tell that all is not great in McCain world when the best an endorsement can do is repeat a few GOP talking points about experience and a record of bipartisanship and conclude that

That’s the best they can do? In Texas? Damning with faint praise that is.

Sam Zell bought the Tribune in 2007; the paper encouraged Obama to run in 2006, endorsed his first state senate race in 2000 and then again in 2004.

From CJJ*'s link:

Are you saying there are no newspapers in Utah that have a liberal leaning editorial board?


I certainly do not know but Salt Lake City has never been deemed a liberal bastion (that I am aware of…Brigham Young founded the city fer chrissakes…liberal does not come to mind).

As posters pointed out Sam Zell is the NEW owner so there’s no story here. It’s a different paper. The Trib also owns the LA Times.

Zell has made a name by going where the money is. The CW owns the largest group of CW affiliates and Zell publicly made it known if the CW doesn’t produce, he’ll dump them. He already dumped the CW in San Diego for FOX.

Zell has ended news on TV stations where it isn’t profitable and has shown with WGN he goes with the bucks. He shuffled lead night anchor to afternoon news and replaced the guy with the “Flavour of the day” Mark Suppelsa.

So Zell strictly is where the money is. He is a venture capitalist, and he has to answer to his investors, not to the people of Chicago. And remember the Trib is now a privately traded company so it doesn’t have to answer to the SEC. The old Tribune was a public company

Editorial boards operate differently at different papers. At some, it’s pretty much a soapbox for the publisher/owner to dictate a subject and a position, whether he actually pens the editorial himself or not. At others, it’s more of an “editorial by committee”, where the board sits down and has a conversation about the topic, eventually coming to a consensus or possibly even voting for a side of the issue. It may or may not be news to you that at many papers, the people who write the editorials are often on a schedule, and when your day comes up in the rotation,\ you write it whether you’re on the concurring or opposing side.

I have no idea how the Chicago Tribune’s board usually works, and it’s probably worth noting that a presidential endorsement may not follow the usual process even if we knew what it was. Sorry for the nonspecific answer.

Well, my point was that just naming the geographic location doesn’t really guarantee that newspapers in its area are going to have particular editorial slants. For all I or the person who asked know, the paper in question is Salt Lake’s one liberal newspaper.


I don’t think the SLT could be called liberal, but certainly since Thomas Kearns bought the paper in the early 1900s they have done a lot to down play the strict Mormon leanings that it had early on.

My point was, most of Utah is very conservative, and a paper with an obvious liberal bias would not last long in any part of the state I know of, certainly not the 137 years that the SL Tribune has been around.

Interestingly, they just posted this letter:

So not only mostly conservative, but also fairly bellicose.

Well, not everyone there is bellicose. There was this reply to that letter:


What really makes the Trib endorsement remarkable is that fact that it was once the sandbox of Colonel Robert R. McCormick, about as zany a rightist as ever slithered the earth. Doubtless, right now there is a tremendous whirring sound emanating from his masoleum.

DSeid: thanks for telling us about the Dallas Morning News. Now if they were to endorse Obama, I’d have to change my undies.

How do your undies hold up to the Houston Chronicle and the Austin American Standard endorsing Obama?

I was involved in the endorsement process at a local NY paper in 2006. The decisions were made by the editorial staff and I believe all of the choices and endorsement editorials were all run by the paper’s publisher. I think the publishers may have sent word that Hillary Clinton was going to get the endorsement in her Senate race, but since her opponent wouldn’t come in for an interview or invite us to have any contact, that was probably a given. I agree with Garfield226 that this probably works differently at every publication.

I’ve had a chance to get to the actual newspapers’ sites now. Interesting. The Houston Chronicle has endorsed the Republican candidate in every election going back over 40 years … until now.

I don’t know how far back the Austin Standard goes beyond having gone for Bush but their endorsement is pretty full throated.

So Texas papers have gone two, a Dallas one and a San Antonia one, for McCain. and two, Houston and Austin, for Obama.

Overall minimally 23 papers that had supported Bush last time are now going Obama and only one paper that had supported Kerry going for McCain. Four times the readership.

Do endorsements effect opinion or reflect it? Either way these are good signs.

Probably better if you called them the Austin Statesman, rather than the Standard.:slight_smile:

They endorsed Bush in 2004 and 2000.

Or maybe he’s not very ideological, and is politically unaffiliated as a result.


College Station checks in:


BJMoose, how’s those undies holding up?

Which, of course, was already rendered moot in a previous post:

It appears to remain a story.
(Whether endorsements actually have meaning or an affect on an election is a separate issue, of course.)

Salt Lake City’s mayor is a liberal Democrat and the city hasn’t had a Republican mayor for more than 30 years.