PNJ Picks 2 for Governor

Our local excuse for the press, the Pensacola News Journal, is in endorsements season, and like many papers, they pick one in each of the primaries. Thus they have endorsed one Republican and one Democrat for governor.

I should note first that I have a problem with newspapers or media organizations endorsing politicians. I don’t mind individual journalists expressing their opinion. But newspaper endorsements have always seemed questionable to me. Of course, if it is a journal with an expressed political position, there may be some justification.

But to pick one in each primary implies, in my view, that there is somehow a “best” candidate without consideration of ideas, the sort of good general public servant. But I would not want to vote for an extremely efficient administrator, for example, who would promote (efficiently, of course) ideas of which I disapproved.

I think the news media should inform us about the candidates. They could list all the elements they use in their endorsements and then compare the candidates–without actually endorsing someone.

I must confess that I only read the PNJ when someone forwards me an article, or when it turns up in one of my topic-based news searches. So perhaps I’m not entirely objective about them either. But this isn’t really just about the PNJ. This is a frequent practice by newspapers, and I don’t think it’s a positive contribution to the political system.

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