Newspaper Endorsements Favor Obama

In a recent detailed piece in Editor and Publisher Magazine, it revealed that the Democratic Party, led by presidential candidate Barack Obama, and vice presidential candidate Joe Biden, now lead in daily newspaper endorsements with 240, to Republican presidential Candidate John McCain, and vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin's 115 - sporting a little over 2-1 margin.

As it would turn out, 240 is not too far from John Kerry's 213 to George W. Bush's 205 newspaper endorsements in 2004. Thus far, endorsement numbers in higher circulation papers seem to favor Sen. Obama.

"The most important thing now is how many newspapers endorsed Bush in 2004, which now endorse Obama - it shows an overall change of climate," said Zach Friend, Press Secretary for Pennsylvania's Obama press office.

Following in the footsteps of General Colin Powell, newspapers are breaking from their traditional endorsements to flip their choice. To date, at least 47 newspapers have endorsed Obama, after endorsing Bush in 2004 - while some newspapers have chosen not to endorse either candidate.

In the city of Chicago, where Senator Obama has spent a bulk of his political career, the Chicago Tribune has never endorsed a democratic candidate - which they changed with their endorsement of Obama.

Based on numbers alone, of the newspapers that endorsed a candidate, the majority seems to think that Sen. Obama is the better candidate - but Sen. John McCain, and his running mate beg to differ.

"It's wonderful to be back in Pennsylvania," said Sen. John McCain at a rally in Hershey, Pa on Wednesday. "It's wonderful to fool the pundits because we're going to win the state of Pennsylvania."

While some newspapers agree - at the moment, more disagree.

"I don't see how endorsing a candidate is conducive to a news organization's efforts to remain objective," said Kamala Lane, Associated Press reporter. "I think that the public is mature enough to make its own decisions. However, in most cases it can have the same impact as a campaign ad, namely with undecided voters."

In the keystone state of Pennsylvania, endorsements from newspapers are more important than it ever before. Enter Philadelphia Inquirer, "Barack Obama offers a plan that would pull this nation from the precipice built by bad Bush decisions," the editorial team at the Inquirer wrote in their official endorsement for Senator Obama.

"Newspapers help provide another point of reference for the public," said Friend.

Pennsylvania is still an important state to the election. Any endorsements for either of the candidates will be beneficial to their respective campaigns. To date, Sen. Obama is leading by 11-points.

A phone call was made to the McCain press office for comment, but was not returned.