The Manchester Union Leader has been NH's most conservative newspaper and has been a key endorsement for any GOP candidate looking to win NH. While it is a sought after distinction, by no means is it an automatic lock for the endorsed candidate to win NH's primary based off this endorsement.
That brings us to the 2012 primary and the Union Leader's endorsement of Newt Gingrich. Intellectually, Gingrich has the ability to work ideas and review complex problems. He can give thoughtful reviews of key issues and history, but lacks the type of presentation that allows voters to want him as a leader. His style is abrasive and dismissive. He holds a pretty high opinion of his own thoughts and acts condescending to others. He may attract some of the "hard right" of the GOP but he doesn't get the center right or the middle which are both key to winning the White House.
In short, a vote for Newt ( How can anyone think a guy with a name like " Newt " can be President ?) is a vote to keep the feckless idiot that is President in the White House. Gingrich will alienate too many voters and give the left all the ammunition they need to prop up the " Vacationer-in-Chief". The GOP is not strong on leaders this election cycle but I am sure that Newt Gingrich is not the answer, and that is why his rise in the polls has been a delight to President Clinton and other DEMS.
NH will have to think long & hard about the choice they make but if I know my neighbors to the north, they have no more love for Newt than I. He is not the answer we need after suffering for the past three years under the lefty loon that is keeping the seat warm at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Sorry Union Leader, you whiffed on this one.
If the Union Leader thinks Newt Gingrich is the "answer", it must have been a pretty dumb question they were asked.
Union Leader endorses Gingrich
By MAGGIE HABERMAN 11/27/11 Politico.com
The Manchester Union Leader, New Hampshire's most influential paper, picks Newt Gingrich as its candidate of choice in an editorial today (no link yet, but text provided by POLITICO's Ginger Gibson) across the top of the front page.
Key points in the endorsement, made by publisher Joe McQuaid:
America is at a crucial crossroads. It is not going to be enough to merely replace Barack Obama next year.
We are in critical need of the innovative, forward-looking strategy and positive leadership that Gingrich has shown he is capable of providing...
Readers of the Union Leader and Sunday News know that we don’t back candidates based on popularity polls or big-shot backers. We look for conservatives of courage and conviction who are independent- minded, grounded in their core beliefs about this nation and its people, and best equipped for the job.
We don’t have to agree with them on every issue. We would rather back someone with whom we may sometimes disagree than one who tells us what he thinks we want to hear.
Newt Gingrich is by no means the perfect candidate.
But Republican primary voters too often make the mistake of preferring an unattainable ideal to the best candidate who is actually running.
It's the most significant and impactful endorsement in the GOP race so far, and solidifies Gingrich's standing as the alternative to Romney as the race heads into the final pre-Iowa caucuses stretch.
The endorsement, of course, has no bearing on Gingrich in Iowa, and given the competition between the two states, is not likely to be a boost there.
Close observers of the Union Leader had assumed Gingrich as the likely choice when the paper's edit-heads said yesterday there would be an endorsement within the next 24 hours. It was never going to be Jon Huntsman, who despite working the state for months has been the subject of criticism by the editorial page.
Mitt Romney, however, who is ahead in the polls in a state where he has invested years campaign, had worked hard to court Union Leader officials. Reid Epstein took a memorable picture of Romney sitting next to McQuaid at a recent Manchester event, in stark contrast to Herman Cain, who had blown off the paper's editorial board meeting after his campaign couldn't agree with the paper on the length of the interview.
Romney has assiduously courted the paper, and so it remains to be seen whether all that effort amounts to a lessening of the editorial page's boosting of Gingrich (and any negativity about Romney), especially after 2007, when the paper endorsement McCain and was sharply critical of the former neighbor state governor.
The best outcome for Romney would have been an endorsement, but the second-best would be a bit of restraint in the paper's approach to him