Tuesday, October 26, 2004

The Cleveland Plain Dealer 

There's been a lot of talk in the blogosphere about how the Plain Dealer was set to endorse Kerry, but that the publisher overruled the editorial board and was going to force them to endorse Bush. See this Daily Kos entry:
I learned this morning that tomorrow morning's edition of the Cleveland Plain Dealer will endorse George Bush for a second four-year term. What makes this particularly disgraceful and quite terrifying is that the seven-member editorial board of the PD voted 5-2 to endorse John Kerry. The publisher overruled them and announced the paper would support Bush. Similarly, the Lorain Journal editors were told that either they endorse George Bush or they endorse no one. So, they are endorsing no one.
Well, it turns out the Plain Dealer has decided to not endorse either candidate. The paper's editorial on this states, in part:
The decision not to endorse in this race was not easily taken. A majority of the editorial board favored Kerry, but after long and difficult deliberations, it was decided that the better path would be to sit this one out.
However, it's not quite true that the board voted 5-2 to endorse Kerry and that the publisher overruled them. Here's what really happened, according to G&G sources very close to the editorial board process: The endorsement process (if not for all candidates, at least for president this time around) involves the board sitting around with the paper's president and publisher, Alex Machaskee. The board tells Machaskee all of their thoughts and opinions on the matter. Now, I'm not sure if the normal process is that the board tells Machaskee this and then he makes the endorsement decision, or if he usually goes along with the board, or what. But, in this case, had a vote been taken, it would have been 5-2 for Kerry, and it is true that Machaskee did want to overrule them and endorse Bush. But, this leaked out over the weekend, rumors started flying about the editorial board being overruled, and Machaskee must have had second thoughts and decided that the paper would make no endorsement this time around.

So, this post continues G&G's attempts this week to bring you real, if worthless, news. We hope to have some more Florida dispatches later in the day.

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