Ohio newspapers ink their 2012 presidential picks
October 22nd, 2012
01:44 PM ET
1 year ago

Ohio newspapers ink their 2012 presidential picks

(CNN) – In the final two weeks before Election Day, the presidential race is coming down to just a few states–with Ohio as perhaps the most contested battleground.

For Mitt Romney, the Buckeye State may be even more crucial, as no Republican has ever won the White House without carrying Ohio.

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A number of newspapers in the state published their endorsements within the last week – two siding with President Obama and the other with Romney. The largest paper, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, rolled out support for Obama but with far less enthusiasm than in 2008.

The paper said Obama has fumbled and "often been his own worst enemy," but he has the potential to continue economic growth after leading "the nation back from the brink of depression."

The paper acknowledged the obstacles Obama inherited when he took office and said Obama's failings and lacking "vision for the many challenges that still confront America" in this campaign almost led the paper to endorse GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

"This litany of missed opportunities, as much as the grim economic statistics that have become America's unacceptable new normal, left us sorely tempted to endorse Gov. Romney this fall," the editorial board wrote. "Like President Obama, he is a man of public achievement and private honor. He was born to wealth and power, but used those advantages well."

On the other hand, Obama made the "unpopular but gutsy" decision to further bail out automakers Chrysler and General Motors, significant players in the Ohio economy. "Romney," the newspaper wrote, "urged the companies to file for traditional bankruptcy – at a time when private-sector credit was frozen even for healthy firms."

According to a Quinnipiac University/CBS News survey released Monday morning, 50% of likely voters in Ohio say they support the president, with 45% backing Romney. Obama's five point lead is right at the edge of the survey's sampling error. Throughout the fall and summer, polls in Ohio have shown a tight race, some with a slight advantage for Obama.

Ohio has 18 electoral votes. Both candidates and their campaigns have made frequent stops in both states in the weeks before Election Day. Vice President Joe Biden heads to the Buckeye State on Monday for two events and Obama campaigns there this week.

The Akron Beacon Journal of Ohio printed more supportive ink for Obama. In fact, the editorial sharply defended the president against critics.

"Disappointment burdens the president's pursuit of a second term. Yet he shouldn't be measured merely against his soaring words. What matters are his real accomplishments and the direction he proposes for the years ahead. On both those counts, he has succeeded far more than his critics contend," the paper read.

While the editorial board criticized the president for lacking "political skills" and failing to "address more directly the battered housing market," the board wrote that Obama has set solid measures in place.

"What is telling about a presidency is its tilt, its direction, spirit and priorities. Thus, to those who argue the president lacks a plan for a second term: Look at the foundation that has been set. He has used the levers of government to bolster the economy, investing in education, innovation and health care, understanding the essential role of the public sector in competitiveness," the paper wrote.

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Romney, meanwhile, picked up an endorsement from the Columbus Dispatch on Sunday.

"After nearly four years of economic stagnation, massive unemployment, record-setting debt and government intrusions into the economy that have paralyzed the private sector, the United States needs a new direction," the Dispatch editorial said. "For this reason, The Dispatch urges voters to choose Republican Mitt Romney for president in the Nov. 6 election."

The Ohio paper's editorial proceeded to lay out the results of Obama's four years in the White House in bullet point form, ticking off a series of economic woes from unemployment to the poverty rate still plaguing the country.

The Dispatch, which endorsed 2008 GOP presidential nominee John McCain, said it "warned" readers last cycle of the dangers of an Obama presidency.

"Just as we warned four years ago, this master orator has pushed America toward a European-style social democracy," the Florida paper wrote. "We don't question Obama's motives. The president sincerely believes in the inviolable ability of the federal government to make all things right. But Americans should see that this top-down approach doesn't work."

"Romney, in contrast, would capitalize on individuals' ingenuity, not Washington directives."

The Dayton Daily News and the Toledo Blade, which both supported Obama in 2008, have yet to make their endorsements. The Cincinnati Enquirer has also not printed an endorsement. It backed McCain four years ago.

– CNN's Ashley Killough, Gregory Wallace and Dana Davidsen contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2012 • Ohio
soundoff (90 Responses)
  1. Valentina

    Romney became the GOP nominee without "crucial" South Carolina primary, right? Well, there are other ways that he will become the President of the United States, with or without "crucial" Ohio. There, I said it.

    October 22, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  2. Dan

    President Obama faced a Republican Congress who said their #1 priority was to make Obama a one term President.

    Since Republicans gained more control of Washington in 2011
    - Republicans blocked the Presidents Jobs Bill.
    - Republicans blocked the extension to the small business investments. (2010 Congress gave us 100% write off in 2011, 50% write off in 2012)
    - Republicans blocked the Farm Bill
    - Republicans blocked the Veterans Jobs Bill

    October 22, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  3. Ellen

    Well, THIS Buckeye isn't voting for either of them. Gary Johnson!

    October 22, 2012 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  4. gt

    its jobs....if you think obama"s agenda on social policy and economy is where we need to be ...then vote for him ...if you think we have lost our way ...send him back to chi town...

    October 22, 2012 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  5. zaphed

    Ohio for obama. period

    October 22, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  6. Paul

    Read it and weep Republicans!

    October 22, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  7. Phil

    This is sad. The newspaper is a media outlet just like the others and by endorsing any candidate is an abuse of power and platform. Their person views and politcis should not be injected to help either campaign. This is a way for them to manipulate the outcome of this election by what they personally think.

    October 22, 2012 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  8. TEAPARTY MIKE

    Polls released over the last several days show strong movement towards Romney, though Obama still shows a very thin lead in Ohio.
    New Suffolk poll out today shows a tie.
    Gravis Marketing also shows a tie.
    Fox News show Obama +3, last poll showed Obama +7, +4 move towards Romney.
    Rasmussen shows Obama +1, last poll was also Obama +1.
    PPP shows Obama +1, last poll showed Obama +5, +4 move towards Romney. This poll is very interesting. Last poll showed Obama +5 with a +4 Dem polling advantage over Republicans. New poll shows Obama up only +1 with a +8 Dem advantage in the polling sample over Republicans. Actuall Dem advantage in Ohio in 2008 was Dem +5. Even this poll showed Republicans more excited to vote them Dems. Seems a Dem advanted in 2012 greater than 2008 is not going to happen.
    CBS News shows Obama +5. Last poll showed Obama +10. Move of +5 towards Romney. This poll like the PPP poll has an unlikely Dem advantage in it's polling sample of +9.
    The CBS poll looks like an outlier, +5 for Obama looks to be an exageragted lead.
    Looks to me like Ohio is in a tied to Obama +2 range and moveing towards Romney.

    October 22, 2012 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  9. v_mag

    The Austin American-Statesman endorsed Bush in 2000. I can forgive 1 mistake. Then they endorsed him in 2004. I have never again read, much less bought, that rag.

    Now an Ohio paper endorses Bush's clone, Rob-money. The people of Ohio should take note that their paper is recommending a third term for George W. Bush, and that is patently insane.

    October 22, 2012 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  10. curious

    Obama didn't lead`anything. He just told us we didn't do it. So he didn't do it.

    October 22, 2012 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  11. FajitaBob

    What ever happened to an impartial media? I know, funny, huh?

    October 22, 2012 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  12. Doctor Doo Little

    The choices given to the Americans regretfully are these 2 candidates ironically both are determinant to our future. Canada being their closest ally and neighbor are praying for the one that is appointed and anointed by The Almighty to be elected The Almighty knew about this before the foundation of the world so for Christian, please simply pray and put aside their personal faith and leave it with HIM WHO is able modify, convert and even add to His Kingdom.

    October 22, 2012 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  13. vickoko

    who is reading these papers anymore

    October 22, 2012 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  14. Mark

    I grew up in Ohio. Northern Ohio has a tendency to be more blue and southern Ohio more red. I grew up in the southern area of the state and went to undergrad in the northern area of the state and have many acquaintances from all areas of the great state of Ohio. I expect the three major northern papers (Cleveland Plain Dealer, Akron Beacon Journal, Toledo Blade) will all go with Obama (2 of the 3 already have) and the three central / southern major papers (Columbus Dispatch, Dayton Daily News, Cincinnati Enquirer) will all back Romney (1 of the 3 already has). So ... 3 one way, 3 the other. The newspapers, just like the vote, will be split. I expect the Ohio election will be extremely close and would not be stunned one bit if it is the deciding factor in the race.

    October 22, 2012 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  15. glyder

    why would anyone care who the media picks?

    October 22, 2012 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  16. Anonymous

    Romney and the GOP only want to rule, not govern.

    October 22, 2012 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  17. vodknockers

    N0 Jobs
    N0 Plan
    N0 Clue
    N0bama
    N0 more

    October 22, 2012 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  18. corima

    Dan,
    Obama and Dems controlled both House and Senate for the two years

    October 22, 2012 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  19. pkrbkr

    How can the man who invests his money other places besides the USA be elected of this country? I just don't get it......where is HIS patriotism? Oh, yeah, it's with the 47%! Obama/Biden 2012 Forward

    October 22, 2012 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  20. GG

    The Federal and State Governments accounts for over 1/3 of my household expenses in the form of taxes. My direct benefits from these expenses – Public Schools, The Military, Our public highways, national parks – good stuff. The rest of that money goes to programs that I don't qualify for either because of my income, or because of my race. I have no problem paying my fair share for things that benefit the public good, but I'm not in favor of set asides that everyone doesn't qualify for. So I will be voting for Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan this year. Obama's chant of hope and change was all hype. His 4 years in office have been an absolute disgrace to this nation. He cannot be allowed to continue to spend us into oblivion.

    October 22, 2012 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  21. Pete

    Remember republicans,Romney didn't win the rite to be here against Pres.Obama he bought his way in and you ignorent people know it..He out spent all challengers close to 10-1 and that's conservative in saying that his super pacs did all Romneys talking,money in politics talk and BS walks but its different in the presidency ,just ask the president he knows!!

    October 22, 2012 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  22. Bill

    All I can say is that if folks in Ohio think the last recession was bad, wait until you see what happens (Gid forbid) if Mittens wins the election. Bottom line, the GOP can not govern and history has proved their policies do not work.

    October 22, 2012 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  23. Brian

    Newspaper endorsements are nothing more than a front-page editorial endorsement. Also, the Dispatch is in Columbus, Ohio, not Florida as the article states after talking about Columbus:
    "The Ohio paper's editorial proceeded to lay out the results of Obama's four years in the White House in bullet point form, ticking off a series of economic woes from unemployment to the poverty rate still plaguing the country.

    The Dispatch, which endorsed 2008 GOP presidential nominee John McCain, said it "warned" readers last cycle of the dangers of an Obama presidency.
    "Just as we warned four years ago, this master orator has pushed America toward a European-style social democracy," the Florida paper wrote."

    October 22, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  24. Buckeye

    Kind of a surprise since Obama's policies have done nothing but hurt the people of Ohio. But lets face it, the Plain Dealer is essentially an arm of the Democratic Party so take it for what it's worth. The truth of the matter is that Romney is climbing in the polls. Every day more and more are turning to him and away from the more radical Obama. Personally I just can't imagine letting Obama ring up 4 more years of massive debt to pass along to our children. That's nuts...so must be the Plain Dealer if they want me to sacrifice my children's future.

    October 22, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  25. VeteranUSA

    Just like 4 years ago, Columbus got it wrong. The Dispatch should dispatch of their wealthy and elitist editorial board. They are obviously not in touch with average Columbusites who are earning about $38K annually. Giving tax breaks to the wealthy is not going to help these people and will only take away benefits they are currently receiving.

    October 22, 2012 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
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