About Whether Newspapers Should Endorse Political Candidates

From CJR’s The Media Today with Jon Allsop:

IT’S NEWSPAPER-ENDORSEMENT SEASON AGAIN, and that means it’s Should newspapers do endorsements? season again. Last week, Alden Global Capital, the hedge fund notorious for slashing costs at its local titles, came down on the No side of the question, with editorial boards at papers that it owns stating that they will no longer endorse candidates for governor, US senator, or president. “Unfortunately, as the public discourse has become increasingly acrimonious, common ground has become a no man’s land between the clashing forces of the culture wars,” a company editorial explaining the change read, adding that, especially online, readers often struggle to differentiate between news and opinion content, perceiving the latter as revealing a bias in the former even though the two are typically walled off from one another. The editorial said that while the no-endorsement policy would apply in races that bosses see as “increasingly nationalized,” it would not in “more local contests, such as city councils, school boards, local initiatives, referendums and other such matters.”