Newspaper Endorsements: Anyone See a Problem Here?

When you read that some part of a newspaper has endorsed a particular political candidate, do you realize that not the whole paper, but the editorial board is the entity endorsing? And if you read that the editorial board of a paper has endorsed that particular candidate, would it then stand to reason that editorials printed would now favor that same candidate?

This does not reassure readers of the objectivity of those determining which editorials are to be printed in the paper. While editorials are not free of bias, the board determining which are to be printed should be expected to be. This way we are sure to read an accurate representation of the opinions of the citizens being reported to. Is this not reasonable?

And yet we watch as editorial boards around the country endorse candidates and provide their readers with a skewed representation of the competence of a candidate.

I have watched as backroom deals steer the endorsement process. Have many entities and persons forsaken endorsing candidates for their competence in exchange for making deals that would benefit their own career furtherance? In several cases, yes.

Recently a candidate, whom we will call “Candidate Joe”, watched as a currently elected official exited a conference room with the owner of a major regional newspaper. That elected official was (and is) a major supporter of Candidate Joe’s opponent, whom we will call “Candidate Steve”. This occurred as the two candidates entered a conference room together to meet with the editorial board of that same paper for the purpose of an endorsement decision. Subsequently “Candidate Steve” received the endorsement of the editorial board. And further, one of the writers of editorials in supporter of Candidate Joe recounted to me the severe difficulty met in getting editorials of Candidate Joe’s supporters printed in that paper as well as another with the same ownership!

Perhaps, however, this gives us some insight into the bias of a particular paper when we read it. If a paper endorses Obama for example, then we are wary that its articles are bias toward him. But then the paper has basically become a low quality magazine filled with subtle, or not so subtle, advertisements for their ‘darling’ candidates. In fact one reporter for the Washington Post charted out a number of the more important newspaper endorsements in the recent race for the US Presidency.

At the time of the article’s publishing, the Washington Post had yet to endorse in the race.  Writer Aaron Blake mentions only once–at the end of the article–that the “editorial boards are the ones endorsing.” Not only that, but he also recognizes the bias we see by pointing out that more papers, with wider circulation, endorsed Barak Hussein Obama.  What so many believe–that the media does not produce clear, non-bias information–is only reinforced in this article.

How can we have any confidence in the objectivity of our news sources if we cannot trust that they are operating in the best interest of informing readers on the facts? Gone are the days when reading the paper offered non-bias facts for their readers. And thus we have seen many successful news sources appear online from citizens fed up with the mainstream media. Fed up with the self-serving bias and sensationalism that plagues the papers and airwaves. Sites such as, among others are springing up and offering the truth.

PolitiChick anchor Ann-Marie Murrell’s recent ‘Break-up with the Mainstream Media’ has garnered attention with a number of online media and is now being posted to these other news sources. We are starting to see the effect of real people who care about accurate and complete coverage of what is going on in our nation and world. It may not be as quickly widespread as one might like, but a new wave of truth in media is surging to the forefront. If the papers continue to show such bias as having their editorial boards endorse candidates, then we are sure to see more of these independent sources offering factual information through faithful, accurate reporting to the public.

Michelle Moons

Michelle Moons is a campaign treasurer pursuing a CPA license. She is a contributor for and operates her campaign finance business in Carlsbad, California.

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