In a somewhat unexpected decision just weeks before the upcoming presidential election, the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board has decided to forgo the Democratic and Republican parties, choosing instead to endorse a third-party candidate.
Arguing Donald Trump is “not fit to be president of the United States” and citing “serious questions about honesty and trust” with Hillary Clinton, the Tribune announced Friday that it has endorsed Libertarian Gary Johnson for president.
“We reject the cliche that a citizen who chooses a principled third-party candidate is squandering his or her vote. Look at the number of fed-up Americans telling pollsters they clamor for alternatives to Trump and Clinton,” the board wrote in its decision. “What we're recommending will appeal less to people who think tactically than to conscientious Americans so infuriated that they want to send a message about the failings of the major parties and their candidates.”
The editorial board cites Johnson’s experience building a construction business before entering politics and his stance on expanding global trade, and growing the economy rather than raising taxes. They also note, however, that his foreign policy stance “approaches isolationism” and he is “too reluctant to support what we view as necessary interventions overseas.”
“We hope Johnson does well enough that Republicans and Democrats get the message — and that his ideas make progress over time,” the board wrote. “This year neither major party presents a good option. So the Chicago Tribune today endorses Libertarian Gary Johnson for president of the United States. Every American who casts a vote for him is standing for principles — and can be proud of that vote. Yes, proud of a candidate in 2016.”