The Tennessean Breaks with Obama, Endorses Romney

 

Breaking with a long tradition of endorsing Democratic candidates for president, The Tennessean (the state of Tennessee’s largest daily newspaper) endorsed Mitt Romney today. The normally left-leaning editorial page cited Obama’s ram-rod approach to healthcare reform and inability to control spending as reasons to deny the president a second term.

For all his efforts, ranging from the stimulus package to green-energy development, to bring us out of recession, he has never found the key. He has generally made poor choices of the people needed to get the job done, such as Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. And the number of jobs created during his term simply has not kept up with demand.

The paper mentioned Romney’s competent record as governor of Massachusetts, and called on Romney to implement a serious debt-reduction plan and to “reunite America” with a more productive and bi-partisan approach to governing than Obama took during his four years in office.

The Tennessean, based in Nashville, is as faithfully Democratic as they come. In 2008 the paper endorsed Barack Obama. In 2004, it endorsed John Kerry. In 2000, it endorsed Al Gore. And…well, you get the picture.

Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit (a fellow Tennessean) took note a short time ago of this surprising Republican endorsement from “Al Gore’s newspaper.”(Gore worked for the paper as a young man and still has a home here in Nashville.)

Some long-time Democrats, who voted for Obama in 2008, are looking at the state of this country right now and they simply cannot risk another four years. In the debates, Romney has emerged in the nation’s consciousness as a viable and sensible alternative. As The Tennessean headline put it, for them, it is “Time for Another Change.”

Could this endorsement mark the emergence of “the Romney Democrats?”

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Members have made 30 comments.

  1. Profile photo of ConservativeWanderer Inactive
    Nathan Harden: Could this endorsement mark the emergence of “the Romney Democrats?” · · 6 minutes ago

    More like the resurgence of the Reagan Democrats, now renamed the Romney Democrats.

    And yes, it could. It probably does, in fact.

    But the gloom-and-doom crowd will still insist that Obama is going to win.

    • #1
    • October 18, 2012 at 10:52 am
  2. Profile photo of Arsenal Thatcher

    Is this the first evidence that Rob’s prediction in “Next Week’s Big Story” was correct?

    • #2
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:02 am
  3. Profile photo of Israel P. Member

    Has Tennessee started voting yet?

    • #3
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:03 am
  4. Profile photo of das_motorhead Inactive

    Israel, early voting started here yesterday. The endorsement comes at a perfect time.

    • #4
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:29 am
  5. Profile photo of Melanie Graham Contributor

    Obama is a fad, not a president. I think the fad is over.

    • #5
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:42 am
  6. Profile photo of ConservativeWanderer Inactive
    Melanie Graham: Obama is a fad, not a president. I think the fad is over. · 3 minutes ago

    That’s the line of the day, right there.

    • #6
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:46 am
  7. Profile photo of Hang On Member
    Melanie Graham: Obama is a fad, not a president. I think the fad is over. · 0 minutes ago

    I keep thinking of a 15-second commercial. Obama is speaking at the beginning and his voice begins to fade. Fading in is the voice of an operatic soprano singing Wagner or some such who gets louder and louder. On screen, it flashes “Obama is over” then “So over”. Show it but once — on Monday Night Football the day before the election.

    • #7
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:47 am
  8. Profile photo of The New Clear Option Inactive

    Does this aria make me sound fat?

    Hang On
    Melanie Graham: Obama is a fad, not a president. I think the fad is over. · 0 minutes ago

    I keep thinking of a 15-second commercial. Obama is speaking at the beginning and his voice begins to fade. Fading in is the voice of an operatic soprano singing Wagner or some such who gets louder and louder. On screen, it flashes “Obama is over” then “So over”. Show it but once — on Monday Night Football the day before the election. · 1 minute ago

    • #8
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:50 am
  9. Profile photo of Frozen Chosen Thatcher

    Gallup has Romney up 52%-45% and their daily tracking poll shows an unbroken line up for Romney in the past week.

    The fat lady is warming up!

    • #9
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:54 am
  10. Profile photo of Freesmith Member

    A nice endorsement from the Tennessean.

    However, whenever I hear a Democrat say “bi-partisan” I reach for my wallet – to make sure the Democrat doesn’t steal it.

    Of course, I’m quite reasonable in these “reaching” matters. I’m all for reaching “across the aisle,” so long as Democrats are doing the all the reaching.

    You see, I want the next Democrat minority leader of the House of Representatives to be known as “The Bob Michel of the 21st Century.”

    As I mentioned in another context, the function of the Democrat Party should be to try, as unsuccessfully we conservatives can manage, to slow down but not stop the diminution of the federal government.

    • #10
    • October 18, 2012 at 11:56 am
  11. Profile photo of Horace Svácz Inactive
    Hang On

    I keep thinking of a 15-second commercial. Obama is speaking at the beginning and his voice begins to fade. Fading in is the voice of an operatic soprano singing Wagner or some such who gets louder and louder. On screen, it flashes “Obama is over” then “So over”. Show it but once — on Monday Night Football the day before the election. · 1 hour ago

    Of course you meant “the voice of a fat operatic soprano,” right? It has to be a fat lady or it won’t work. And I would leave it at “It’s over.”

    • #11
    • October 19, 2012 at 1:24 am
  12. Profile photo of Troy Senik Editor
    Karen: Meh, I don’t know if this is something to get excited about. If memory serves, those Dem endorsements didn’t help take the state. It’s been reliably republican for a while. Nashville has enjoyed a big economic boom in recent years becoming a hub of the healthcare industry. Obamacare will hit that industry and the region hard. Even the folks at The Tennessean know which side their bread is buttered. All politics is local. · 1 hour ago

    All true. Tennessee hasn’t gone for a Democrat in a presidential election since Clinton/Gore ’96 (remember all the caterwauling about how Gore would have won the 2000 election if he had just carried his home state?). But I don’t think the point here is electoral implications (how many people vote for president based on editorial endorsements, anyway?). It’s that even a newspaper that has spent over a decade going against the grain of local politics (last I checked, Williamson County — the Nashville suburbs — was rivaling Orange County as the most GOP friendly locale in the nation) just doesn’t find it worth the candle this time. The edifice seems to be crumbling.

    • #12
    • October 19, 2012 at 2:06 am
  13. Profile photo of Jude Member

    Israel, we began voting yesterday, October 17th. 

    Israel Pickholtz: Has Tennessee started voting yet? · 2 hours ago

    I am sitting in my office in Nashville and just saw Nathan’s note about the Tennessean’s endorsement of Romney. I am floored. That newspaper is locked in a leftward tilt – so much so that I stopped reading that rag to reduce my blood pressure. Is Prof. Rahe correct? Is this going to be a rout of Obama and America’s 21st century flirtation with socialism? I’m beginning to let myself hope.

    Looking at the above remarks by Troy and others, I comment that this is more of an indication of the trend than an influence on the outcome. However, it could discourage Democrat voters and affect down ballot elections.

    • #13
    • October 19, 2012 at 2:08 am
  14. Profile photo of EThompson Inactive
    Troy Senik, Ed.: That does it, Nashville. You have found a way to make me love you more. · 1 hour ago

    I, too, am shocked at the endorsement. As a Vandy intern at the Tennesseanean during college, I would never have seen this one coming. (As a matter of fact, I, as a suspiciously conservative student, was limited to the ‘sports beat,’ which of course was fine with me!)

    Truly, wonders never cease.

    • #14
    • October 19, 2012 at 2:42 am
  15. Profile photo of oleneo65 Thatcher
    Israel Pickholtz
    Hang On
    Melanie Graham: Obama is a fad, not a president. I think the fad is over. · 0 minutes ago

    I keep thinking of a 15-second commercial. Obama is speaking at the beginning and his voice begins to fade. Fading in is the voice of an operatic soprano singing Wagner or some such who gets louder and louder. On screen, it flashes “Obama is over” then “So over”. Show it but once — on Monday Night Football the day before the election. · 23 minutes ago

    Legal Insurrection (who for some reason is not listed in Ricochet’s “Sites We Like”) has begun using the hashtag #TheEnd. · 5 hours ago

    Edited 5 hours ago

    I too would like to see a Ricochet link to Legal Insurrection.

    • #15
    • October 19, 2012 at 5:45 am
  16. Profile photo of bob lynch Inactive

    I live in Nashville and this huge.This has never happened.

    • #16
    • October 19, 2012 at 5:50 am
  17. Profile photo of oleneo65 Thatcher
    EThompson
    Troy Senik, Ed.: That does it, Nashville. You have found a way to make me love you more. · 1 hour ago

    I, too, am shocked at the endorsement. As a Vandy intern at theTennesseanean during college, I would never have seenthisonecoming. (As a matter of fact, I, as a suspiciously conservative student, was limited to the ‘sports beat,’ which of course was fine with me!)

    Truly, wonders never cease. · 3 hours ago

    I endorse both Troy and EThomas’ comments. I’ve lived in the Nashville area for 25 years and I’m astounded with the news that editorially The Tennessean and I agree on the 2012 Presidential candidate. Yes, miracles are still possible.

    • #17
    • October 19, 2012 at 5:52 am
  18. Profile photo of Brian Clendinen Member

     

    The Orlando Sentinel (the major paper for Orlando area) endorsed Romney today also. They are pretty much like every single major paper, Democratic. It is weird were traditional Democratic outlets are changing their colors.

    • #18
    • October 19, 2012 at 6:34 am
  19. Profile photo of Songwriter Member

    This is a big deal. And great news. Btw – just how many Ricochet folks are there in the Nash Vegas area? Enough for a meet up ?

    • #19
    • October 19, 2012 at 6:38 am
  20. Profile photo of das_motorhead Inactive
    Songwriter: This is a big deal. And great news. Btw – just how many Ricochet folks are there in the Nash Vegas area? Enough for a meet up ? · 4 minutes ago

    There’s a few of us, definitely enough. Last year I tried a few times to sucker Troy into a meetup with the mid-state crew, but being the international man of mystery he is, the timing never worked out. Regardless, I keep thinking we should get something on the books, but just haven’t gotten around to tossing the idea out there on the member feed. Thanks for breaking the ice.

    • #20
    • October 19, 2012 at 6:46 am
  21. Profile photo of DubyaC Member

    And the Orlando Sentinel endorses Romney today as well – another newspaper that typically endorses Democrats. I think such endorsements are more weather-vane indicators than anything — the editors know which way the election is going and they scramble to allign their endorsement with the electorate.

    • #21
    • October 19, 2012 at 7:34 am
  22. Profile photo of Karen Member

    Troy, Williamson Co. may be GOP, but Davidson Co./Metro Nashville isn’t nearly – maybe purplish if that. I grew up in South Nashville/Oak Hill and there are still a lot of yellow dogs, not to mention a significant pacifist/social justice movement among local churches. Call me cynical, but I think this endorsement is motivated by the threat to the local economy. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great. And I know some Obama voters down there who are annoyed by it, but I think this is a practical gesture, not a principled one. I hope you’re right. I’d like to move back there with my family some day.

    • #22
    • October 19, 2012 at 7:57 am
  23. Profile photo of Troy Senik Editor
    Karen: Troy, Williamson Co. may be GOP, but Davidson Co./Metro Nashville isn’t nearly – maybe purplish if that… Call me cynical, but I think this endorsement is motivated by the threat to the local economy… I think this is a practical gesture, not a principled one.

    Totally true on the local politics. The city is further to the left than the suburbs (though in absolute terms that only puts them in the center — the congressman, Jim Cooper, is the platonic essence of a blue dog). Still, the paper’s market isn’t only within city limits — it’s the entire Middle Tennessee region, where Nashville is the (pretty low) high-water mark for liberalism. 

    Having worked in a few newsrooms, I think you’re overestimating the extent to which editorial boards make ‘practical decisions’ (let’s put it this way — I’ve never seen it happen). And the fact that their endorsement goes out of its way to tout the virtues of Obamacare only strengthens that belief. I really doubt there was an ulterior motive at work here. The piece reads like — much as they dislike Romney — the ed board just couldn’t paper over Obama’s failings.

    • #23
    • October 19, 2012 at 11:49 am
  24. Profile photo of Troy Senik Editor
    das_motorhead
    Songwriter: This is a big deal. And great news. Btw – just how many Ricochet folks are there in the Nash Vegas area? Enough for a meet up ? · 4 minutes ago

    There’s a few of us, definitely enough. Last year I tried a few times to sucker Troy into a meetup with the mid-state crew, but being the international man of mystery he is, the timing never worked out. Regardless, I keep thinking we should get something on the books, but just haven’t gotten around to tossing the idea out there on the member feed. Thanks for breaking the ice. · 5 hours ago

    People, put it together and I’ll be there! I’ve been queried about this a few times and it’s just never managed to congeal. But nothing would make me happier than being in my favorite city with some of my favorite people.

    • #24
    • October 19, 2012 at 11:52 am
  25. Profile photo of Joe Butson Inactive

    What an awful endorsement. It manages to be cynical, prescriptive and negative all at once. But I guess I shouldn’t worry too much about how they arrived at what I believe is a sensible decision. 

    • #25
    • October 19, 2012 at 12:01 pm
  26. Profile photo of Israel P. Member
    Hang On
    Melanie Graham: Obama is a fad, not a president. I think the fad is over. · 0 minutes ago

    I keep thinking of a 15-second commercial. Obama is speaking at the beginning and his voice begins to fade. Fading in is the voice of an operatic soprano singing Wagner or some such who gets louder and louder. On screen, it flashes “Obama is over” then “So over”. Show it but once — on Monday Night Football the day before the election. · 23 minutes ago

    Legal Insurrection (who for some reason is not listed in Ricochet’s “Sites We Like”) has begun using the hashtag #TheEnd.

    • #26
    • October 19, 2012 at 12:12 pm
  27. Profile photo of Mimi Inactive

    That makes my heart glad. Can we get some more like that!

    • #27
    • October 19, 2012 at 12:21 pm
  28. Profile photo of quodlibet Member

    Not Wagner! Too racist.

    Hang On
    Melanie Graham: Obama is a fad, not a president. I think the fad is over. · 0 minutes ago

    I keep thinking of a 15-second commercial. Obama is speaking at the beginning and his voice begins to fade. Fading in is the voice of an operatic soprano singing Wagner or some such who gets louder and louder. On screen, it flashes “Obama is over” then “So over”. Show it but once — on Monday Night Football the day before the election. · 35 minutes ago

    • #28
    • October 19, 2012 at 12:25 pm
  29. Profile photo of Troy Senik Editor

    That does it, Nashville. You have found a way to make me love you more.

    • #29
    • October 19, 2012 at 12:42 pm
  30. Profile photo of Karen Member

    Meh, I don’t know if this is something to get excited about. If memory serves, those Dem endorsements didn’t help take the state. It’s been reliably republican for a while. Nashville has enjoyed a big economic boom in recent years becoming a hub of the healthcare industry. Obamacare will hit that industry and the region hard. Even the folks at The Tennessean know which side their bread is buttered. All politics is local.

    • #30
    • October 19, 2012 at 12:44 pm