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Detroit News breaks tradition, endorses Libertarian Gary Johnson

By Eric DuVall
Libertarian Party candidate for president Gary Johnson was endorsed by the Detroit News on Thursday. It was the first time in the paper's history it has endorsed someone other than the Republican nominee for president.
Libertarian Party candidate for president Gary Johnson was endorsed by the Detroit News on Thursday. It was the first time in the paper's history it has endorsed someone other than the Republican nominee for president.

DETROIT, Sept. 29 (UPI) -- Contending "an endorsement of conscience is never wasted," the Republican-leaning editorial board of the Detroit News announced it is backing Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson for president over Republican nominee Donald Trump.

The endorsement is the first time in the paper's 143-year history it has endorsed someone other than the Republican Party's nominee.

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The paper's editorial board said Trump is unfit to hold office.

"Donald Trump is unprincipled, unstable and quite possibly dangerous. He can not be president," the editorial board wrote.

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The News said Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee, has the proper "temperament" to be president but the controversies surrounding her campaign disqualify her for their endorsement.

"So we find ourselves in the same position as a vast number of voters in looking for an option other than skipping the presidential portion of the ballot. Gary Johnson meets that need. We recognize the Libertarian candidate is the longest of long shots with an electorate that has been conditioned to believe only Republicans and Democrats can win major offices. But this is an endorsement of conscience, reflecting our confidence that Johnson would be a competent and capable president and an honorable one."

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The paper praised Johnson and his running mate William Weld for their conservative governing records and position favoring free trade.

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Furthermore, the paper wrote, Johnson and Weld are a departure from the race-based campaigning Trump has undertaken.

"Trump does not meet any true conservative standards. Except, of course, of those who wrongly equate conservatism with racism, sexism and xenophobia. Trump has attracted support from too many of those who represent the worst of human nature," the endorsement states.

The News encouraged disillusioned Republicans to cast a conscience vote.

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"We anticipate our decision not to support either of the major party candidates will bring charges that we are throwing away our endorsement. Our contention is that an endorsement based on conscience is never wasted. We urge readers who share our disillusionment with the presidential ballot and disdain for the GOP nominee to join us in casting a conscience vote for Gary Johnson."

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