The New York Times Editorial Board this week announced its endorsement of two Democratic candidates: Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren.
While the Board generally picks the single candidate it believes will push the nation forward within the established framework, this year is different:
“The events of the past few years have shaken the confidence of even the most committed institutionalists. We are not veering away from the values we espouse, but we are rattled by the weakness of the institutions that we trusted to undergird those values,” writes the Board.
“There are legitimate questions about whether our democratic system is fundamentally broken. Our elections are getting less free and fair, Congress and the courts are increasingly partisan, foreign nations are flooding society with misinformation, a deluge of money flows through our politics, and the economic mobility that made the American dream possible is vanishing.”
Voters have three categories to choose from this year:
- President Trump (the existing model)
- A progressive Democrat (the radical model)
- A moderate Democrat (the realist model)
That two of those categories fall under “Democrat” threatens to put a Republican in office. Also noted, it is impossible to guess which candidate has the best chances of defeating President Trump.
That being said, NYT Editorial Board chose the two candidates it believes are the most effective for each Democratic approach: Elizabeth Warren (radical) and Amy Klobuchar (realist).
The Board chose Warren over Sanders in part based on Sanders’s advanced age and his refusal to compromise.
In defending Warren, Board members note:
- She used to be a Republican
- She claims the economy is rigged to favor the rich
- She seeks to reform the government and the economy
- She wants to improve NATO relations
- She wants to increase government funding for housing and clean energy research
- She favors universal child care, Medicare for All, free public college, and expanded Social Security
Moving on to the next candidate, the Board eschewed Andrew Yang because “he has virtually no experience in government,” dismissed Joe Biden based on age, and refused Michael Bloomberg based on campaign spending and bad press. About Pete Buttigieg, the Board said, “We look forward to him working his way up.”
In defending Amy Klobuchar, Board members note:
- Her position as a moderate
- Her charisma, empathy, and level-headedness
- Her commitment to green policy
- Her Senate resume and history as a prosecutor
- Her plans to reduce childhood poverty
- Her plans for housing and food stamps
- Her support for a $15 minimum wage, free community college, and a public healthcare option
The article goes on to describe President Trump as a “threat to Democracy” and predicts the next US president could permanently change “the direction of America’s prosperity and the future of the planet,” but reminds candidates that millions of Americans will support President Trump in November.
“Any hope of restoring unity in the country will require modesty, a willingness to compromise, and the support of the many demographics that make up the Democratic coalition – young and old, in red states and blue, black and brown and white,” continues the Board. “For Senator Klobuchar, that’s acknowledging the depth of the nation’s dysfunction. For Senator Warren, it’s understanding that the country is more diverse than her base.”
The NYT Board was happy to note that it made its unusual decision after speaking ‘with the leading candidates for more than a dozen hours, asking any questions that came to mind’ and ended its article with a proud, “Let the best woman win.”