The Detroit News on Thursday endorsed Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson, breaking a nearly century-and-a-half tradition of backing Republicans.
“Today this newspaper does something it has never done in its 143-year history: endorse someone other than a Republican candidate in a presidential contest,” the paper’s editorial board said.
“We recognize the Libertarian candidate is the longest of long shots with an electorate that has been conditioned to believe only Republicans and Democrats can win major offices. But this is an endorsement of conscience, reflecting our confidence that Johnson would be a competent and capable president and an honorable one.”
The editors said they could not in good conscience support Donald Trump, the GOP’s presidential nominee.
“[Trump] has found profit in dividing Americans from each other, and from the rest of the world,” they said.
“The 2016 nominee offered by the Republican Party rubs hard against the editorial board’s values as conservatives and Americans. Donald Trump is unprincipled, unstable and quite possibly dangerous. He cannot be president.”
The Detroit News editors also ruled out Hillary Clinton, pointing to the Democratic presidential nominee’s ethics.
“[Clinton’s] career-long struggles with honesty and ethics and calculating, self-serving approach to politics trouble us deeply.”
The editorial board concluded by saying a vote for Johnson should not be considered wasted.
“Our contention is that an endorsement based on conscience is never wasted. We urge readers who share our disillusionment with the presidential ballot and disdain for the GOP nominee to join us in casting a conscience vote for Gary Johnson.”