In the 34-year history of USA TODAY, the Editorial Board has never taken sides in the presidential race. Instead, weve expressed opinions about the major issues and havent presumed to tell our readers, who have a variety of priorities and values, which choice is best for them. Because every presidential race is different, we revisit our no-endorsement policy every four years. Weve never seen reason to alter our approach. Until now.
This year, the choice isnt between two capable major party nominees who happen to have significant ideological differences. This year, one of the candidates Republican nominee Donald Trump is, by unanimous consensus of the Editorial Board, unfit for the presidency.
I also resonate with their closing:
Nor does this editorial represent unqualified support for Hillary Clinton, who has her own flaws (though hers are far less likely to threaten national security or lead to a constitutional crisis). The Editorial Board does not have a consensus for a Clinton endorsement.
Some of us look at her command of the issues, resilience and long record of public service as first lady, U.S. senator and secretary of State and believe shed serve the nation ably as its president.
Other board members have serious reservations about Clintons sense of entitlement, her lack of candor and her extreme carelessness in handling classified information.
Where does that leave us? Our bottom-line advice for voters is this: Stay true to your convictions. That might mean a vote for Clinton, the most plausible alternative to keep Trump out of the White House. Or it might mean a third-party candidate. Or a write-in. Or a focus on down-ballot candidates who will serve the nation honestly, try to heal its divisions, and work to solve its problems.
Whatever you do, however, resist the siren song of a dangerous demagogue. By all means vote, just not for Donald Trump.