Chicago Tribune makes history with Obama endorsement

Sat. October 18, 2008 12:00 AM by Kevin Wayne

Chicago, IL - The Chicago Tribune endorsed Barack Obama for president, the first time in the newspaper's 161-year history that it has backed the Democratic Party nominee for president.

"He has had the character and the will to achieve great things despite the obstacles that he faced as an unprivileged black man in the U.S.," editorial page editor Bruce Dold wrote on behalf of the board, in an editorial posted on the Tribune website this afternoon.

Though the Chicago Tribune is Obama's hometown newspaper, the paper's editorial board is one of the most conservative in the nation.

The editorial concludes that the "Republican Party, the party of limited government, has lost its way."

The Tribune contends that Republican Presidential Candidate John McCain "failed in his most important executive decision" and "put his campaign before his country" by choosing Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. "It's clear she is not prepared to step in at a moment's notice and serve as president," argues the Tribune's editorial board.

"He has risen with his honor, grace and civility intact," the editorial says of Obama. "He has the intelligence to understand the grave economic and national security risks that face us, to listen to good advice and make careful decisions."

The Los Angeles Times' editorial board also announced its endorsement of Obama on Friday, marking the newspaper's first endorsement in a presidential election since 1972 and its first endorsement of a Democrat for president.

The Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times are both owned by Chicago-based Tribune Company.