USA Today has unendorsed a candidate.
That is not a typo, it is precisely what its editorial board did.
Here are excerpts from the editorial, which you can read in its entirety by clicking here. Then we’ll talk a bit about what it says:
We haven’t made a voting recommendation in 34 years. For this election, we made an exception.
This year, the choice isn’t between two capable major party nominees who happen to have significant ideological differences. This year, one of the candidates — Republican nominee Donald Trump — is, by unanimous consensus of the Editorial Board, unfit for the presidency.
We are not unmindful of the issues that Trump’s campaign has exploited: the disappearance of working-class jobs; excessive political correctness; the direction of the Supreme Court; urban unrest and street violence; the rise of the Islamic State terrorist group; gridlock in Washington and the influence of moneyed interests. All are legitimate sources of concern.
Nor does this editorial represent unqualified support for Hillary Clinton, who has her own flaws (though hers are far less likely to threaten national security or lead to a constitutional crisis). The Editorial Board does not have a consensus for a Clinton endorsement.
Where does that leave us? Our bottom-line advice for voters is this: Stay true to your convictions. That might mean a vote for Clinton, the most plausible alternative to keep Trump out of the White House. Or it might mean a third-party candidate. Or a write-in. Or a focus on down-ballot candidates who will serve the nation honestly, try to heal its divisions, and work to solve its problems.
Whatever you do, however, resist the siren song of a dangerous demagogue. By all means vote, just not for Donald Trump.
The parts of this extensive editorial I have left out (but you can read by using the link I’ve provided) include:
-a chapter and verse recitation fo what is wrong with Donald Trump – most of which I agree with,
-a list of what is right with Hillary Clinton – most of which I disagree with, and
-a list of what is wrong with Hillary Clinton – all of which I agree with.
So what we have here is that Donald Trump is a horror show, Hillary Clinton, while far better than Trump, is so unacceptable that, even in the face of a possible Trump candidacy USA Today cannot endorse her…
…and a plea that voters “stay true to your convictions”, but “Whatever you do, however, resist the siren song of a dangerous demagogue. By all means vote, just not for Donald Trump.”, which is an obvious 100% contradiction of “stay true to your convictions”.
As you can see above, this is the first time in its 34 year history that USA Today has “made a voting recommendation” (their words, which are used instead of “endorsement”).
If what you just read is USA Today’s logic – “Don’t vote for Trump but Clinton is too deficient for us to endorse her, so vote your convictions but not if your convictions lead you to Trump” – maybe it should wait another 34 years…or 134 years…before doing it again.