USA Today’s editorial board delivered a powerful endorsement of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, telling readers they “unanimously” support him as he “offers a shaken nation a harbor of calm and competence.”
This is the first time the publication has endorsed a specific presidential candidate.
In 2016, the board urged people to not vote for Donald Trump, calling him “unfit for office because he lacked the ‘temperament, knowledge, steadiness and honesty that America needs from its presidents’.” However, it did not directly endorse Hillary Clinton.
This year, editorial board members said they’ve been driven to take a stand as it is “not a normal election” and are these not “normal times.”
“This year, character, competence and credibility are on the ballot. Given Trump’s refusal to guarantee a peaceful transfer of power if he loses, so, too, is the future of America’s democracy,” they wrote, adding that they stand for core values like “truth, accountability, civility in public discourse, opposition to racism, common-ground solutions to the nation’s problems, and steadfast support for First Amendment rights.”
They stressed that these values “aren’t partisan issues, or at least they shouldn’t be.”
“Donald Trump has trampled each of these principles, making more than 20,000 false or misleading statements, ducking responsibility for his actions, spewing streams of invective at his critics, trafficking in racial fearmongering, governing more as the leader of the red states than of the United States, and relentlessly attacking the free press,” they wrote. “Everything about Biden’s nearly half-century political career suggests he would do a far better job of respecting these values.”
The board also said it believed Biden would handle the coronavirus pandemic more effectively.
“During the campaign, Biden has modeled mask wearing and other public health recommendations that Trump has flouted while downplaying the threat. A Biden administration would follow the science and build trust in emerging vaccines,” they wrote.
The board said its endorsement piece is for undecided voters, people who haven’t decided whether to vote, and those who might be doubting their intentions to vote to reelect the president.
USA Today also said it had spoken to dozens of people in battleground states who had expressed “anguish and dismay about the nation’s direction” under Trump.
USA Today joins a long list of publication that have publicly backed Biden for president, including Scientific American, the Los Angeles Times, the Detroit Free Press, the Tampa Bay Times and Sun-Sentinel in Florida, the Las Vegas Weekly and Las Vegas Sun, the Seattle Times and the Sioux City Journal in Iowa.
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