Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has clinched an important endorsement from New Hampshire’s largest newspaper, New Hampshire Union Leader. Despite his stance on immigration, Gingrich continues in a statistical tie with front runner Mitt Romney in most polls. In New Hampshire there is, however a big gap. Mitt Romney leads the former speaker 41 to 14%.
While still trailing President Obama in a head on match up, Gingrich, according to a Rasmussen poll of 21 November, show Obama would receive 46% to Gingrich’s 40%. Whether or not the newspapers endorsement will have any effect outside of New Hampshire remains to be seen.
President Obama is seen as missing in action on most issues and a majority of Americans believe that the country is moving in wrong direction. Rasmussen’s latest Presidential Tracking Poll had only 22% of Americans approving strongly of the President’s performance, while 40% strongly disapproved.
Two Democratic pollsters, Patrick H. Caddell and Douglas E Schoen, published an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal on November 21st, urged Obama to step down. They concluded even if the President were re-elected he would be unable to govern and that Hillary Clinton would be best suited to get the nomination for the Democratic Party.
Republicans have been cautious about throwing their support behind Mitt Romney. This may change with Gingrich’s announced immigration policy during the CNN National Security debate. Michelle Bachmann called it amnesty.
The New Hampshire Union Leader editorial board has endorsed Newt Gingrich, giving the already surging former House speaker another shot in the arm in the Republican presidential contest.
In an editorial published in print editions Sunday, the publisher of the state’s largest newspaper says Gingrich isn’t the perfect candidate, but that his ideas set him apart.
“We are in critical need of the innovative, forward-looking strategy and positive leadership that Gingrich has shown he is capable of providing,” publisher Joe McQaid wrote.
“Newt Gingrich is by no means the perfect candidate,” he added. “But Republican primary voters too often make the mistake of preferring an unattainable ideal to the best candidate who is actually running.”
The Union Leader’s endorsement is a coveted one in the GOP presidential race, given the conservative lean of the paper’s editorial board and its influence in the first-in-the-nation primary state.