Hillary Gets Major Red-State Newspaper's First Endorsement of a Democrat in 126 Years

Election '16

Hillary Clinton is entering uncharted waters — gaining endorsements from newspapers that have traditionally endorsed Republicans.

On Tuesday Clinton was endorsed by the Arizona Republic, which noted that since it was first published in 1890, it had never endorsed a Democrat for president. Clinton, described as a “centrist,” could “move us beyond rancor and incivility,” the Republic’s editors wrote.

The paper wrote that Clinton “has the temperament and experience to be president. . . . She knows how to compromise and to lead with intelligence, decorum and perspective. She has a record of public service as First Lady, senator and secretary of state” and “has withstood decades of scrutiny so intense it would wither most politicians. The vehemence of some of the anti-Clinton attacks strains credulity.”

The Republic’s endorsement wasn’t full-throated, however. The newspaper was against the idea of Donald Trump, whom the paper called “not conservative” and “not qualified.” Trump “responds to criticism with the petulance of verbal spit wads.”

“That’s beneath our national dignity,” the editorial said. “When the president of the United States speaks, the world expects substance. Not a blistering tweet.” The Republic warns against giving Trump access to the nuclear codes.

Speaking to Republicans who are being pressured to fall in line because Clinton would appoint liberal justices, the Arizona Republic assured its readers that Clinton’s choices would be “accomplished individuals with the experience, education and intelligence to handle the job.”

The editorial cited Clinton’s “flaws,” pointing to her use of a private email server as secretary of state — something she admitted during Monday night’s debate. The paper simply said she should have put up a firewall.

Clinton can use the Republic’s lines about immigration to her advantage. The Republic dismissed Trump’s “hardline immigration” idea, instead supporting Clinton’s comprehensive immigration reform as “consistent with her longtime support for human rights.”

The Democratic presidential nominee has been racking up endorsements from a number of traditionally conservative outlets. Last week she was endorsed by the Cincinnati Enquirer. It was the first time the Ohio newspaper has endorsed a Democrat in nearly 100 years. Earlier this month, she was endorsed by the Dallas Morning News.

On Tuesday, she picked up the endorsement of former Republican Sen. John Warner from the important swing state of Virginia.

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