For the first time in the paper’s history, USA Today issued a presidential endorsement on Tuesday, opting to back Democratic candidate Joe Biden.
USA Today’s editorial board noted that its unprecedented endorsement was not rooted in policy differences with Trump.
“If this were a choice between two capable major party nominees who happened to have opposing ideas, we wouldn’t choose sides. Different voters have different concerns,” the board wrote. “But this is not a normal election, and these are not normal times. This year, character, competence and credibility are on the ballot. Given Trump’s refusal to guarantee a peaceful transfer of power if he loses, so, too, is the future of America’s democracy.”
Trump has “trampled” on the principles of “truth, accountability, civility in public discourse, opposition to racism, common-ground solutions to the nation’s problems, and steadfast support for First Amendment rights,” the USA Today editorial team argued.
In contrast, the board wrote, “everything about Biden’s nearly half-century political career suggests he would do a far better job of respecting these values.”
“This extraordinary moment in the history of our nation requires an extraordinary response,” they stated. “With his plans, his personnel picks, his experience and his humanity, Joe Biden can help lead the United States out of this morass and into the future.”
In 2016, USA Today issued a similarly atypical op-ed urging readers against voting for Trump, but did not formally endorse then-Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton at the time.