Although this is a complete Journalistic cop-out, this is a win for Romney because it is a change away from Obama and the paper is in liberal central Milwaukee. It is only further evidence of the shifting tide away from hopey-changey:. This lack of endorsement is the phase of the Romney campaign where they said: “It’s OK, you tried, he tried, but it’s time to let him go …”
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel decides not to endorse in presidential and Senate races
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel — Wisconsin’s largest and most influential news organization — won’t be endorsing in the very tight presidential and races this year. (Oct. 17 headline: “Marquette Law School Poll finds presidential and Senate races tied in Wisconsin.”)
I asked editorial page editor David Haynes about this and he replied in an email: “I’m writing a column on our decision for the Sunday paper. We may post that early (Friday). As a point of history: The JS did not endorse in the 2000 presidential election, and I remember [editor] Marty Kaiser writing at the time that it was not the first time that a newspaper in Milwaukee had not endorsed. It wasn’t common, but it had happened before.”
Will the paper be making any endorsements? “Sorry, going to have to put you off until we tell our readers,” Haynes replied.
I’m told that both U.S. Senate candidates Tammy Baldwin and Tommy Thompson were furious when they heard the no-endorsement news; I’ve requested comment from both campaigns.
Inside the paper, I’m told, there’s the feeling that “we have two tough picks to make and we’re taking a pass,” and the paper is less relevant because of it.
Five years ago, a Journal Sentinel staffer told Milwaukee Magazine that “we should endorse for president or get out of the editorial business.” In the same media column, the head of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee journalism department said: “If you’re not going to editorialize on the most important topic of the day, and if you’re not going to take a stand in the most important presidential election of our lives, what’s the point?”