Friday, January 6, 2012

Another N.E. newspaper snubs Mitt Romney

In November, New Hampshire's largest newspaper, the conservative Manchester Union-Leader, endorsed Newt Gingrich over Mitt Romney, noting pointedly that it endorses conservatives who are grounded in their core beliefs.

Now, the Boston Globe - New England's biggest newspaper - has endorsed Jon Huntsman over Romney, saying Thursday that Huntsman is the Republican who has been unafraid to articulate specific and far-sighted goals and ideals, while Romney has allowed himself to be pushed to the ideological right by concerns about his appeal to conservatives.

What impact does a Massachusetts newspaper have in the New Hampshire primary? Boston media have long held significant sway in Southern New Hampshire, which is less than an hour away and contains the bulk of the state's population. The Globe has a significant subscriber base there - including one St. Onge home - and many who live at or near the N.H.-Mass. border commute to Boston or its nearby technology corridor.

You can cue the conspiracy theories, such as the left-leaning Globe wanting to stretch out Republican primary for as long as possible to benefit President Barack Obama. But the Globe also snubbed the former Mass. governor in 2008, endorsing eventual nominee John McCain, and this endorsement illustrates the problem Romney not only has connecting with the far right of his party - but the overall electorate. While the far right frets that he's not a true conservative, moderates also have long had issues warming to him, in part because he's not offered a consistent philosophy or narrative through the years that they can connect to.

Said the Globe:

Romney’s ultimate intentions aren’t clear. Is this for real? Both his supporters and detractors suspect that behind the conservative scaffolding is a data-driven moderate who will make practical compromises. But the way Romney has run his campaign, it’s impossible to tell.

Romney will romp in New Hampshire regardless of endorsements. He'll also likely have time to convince the country in the general election that as the Republican governor of a liberal state, he was necessarily pragmatic, and that same pragmatism could serve America well in difficult times. First, he'll have to convince the conservatives in his party - and that will continue Saturday at what promises to be a contentious New Hampshire debate.

Peter St. Onge


Garth Vader said...

Huntsman? Seriously? As Jon Stewart said about his showing in the Ames straw poll, "Huntsman was the only Mormon on the ballot and he still came in second amongst Mormons."

I now predict that the Observer's SC GOP endorsement will go to Pat Paulsen.

kantstanzya said...

Who cares what Republican the Boston Globe endorses. They already have their Obama endorsement written for the fall anyway.

Ghoul said...

Not only does the Observer have that Obama endorsement written, the entire editorial board has an Obama poster glued tot the ceiling over their bed. Well everyone but Fannie, who sleeps hanging from the ceiling.

Tim said...

who cares about paper endorsements? Think for yourself. I am 100% positive I'm more informed than most editorial boards.

Tim said...

amen Ghoul, and the funny thing is where Peter and Taylor live. A sprawling, cul de sac filled republican strong hold. I'm sure at neighborhood bbqs they conform to the common sense surrounding them

ncdave77 said...

Re: Garth - I think Huntsman is a far stronger, more qualified candidate than Romney.. and it's nice to see him get a tiny shred of press. As for the usual editor hate, you complain when they cover the nomination race, you'd complain if they didn't cover it. Short of fawning over the GOP candidates non-stop and shelving all other stories, I can't imagine anything would make you happy.