SABINA, OH -- For the first time in four decades, Iowa’s influential newspaper endorsed a Republican candidate for president as The Des Moines Register announced Saturday night its support of Gov. Mitt Romney in the November election.
The Register, in an editorial that will run in Sunday’s paper, asks voters to give Romney "a chance to correct the nation’s fiscal course and to implode the partisan gridlock that has shackled Washington and the rest of America."
In 2008, the Register endorsed Barack Obama. The last Republican to win the support of the paper was Richard Nixon in 1972.
“Barack Obama rocketed to the presidency from relative obscurity with a theme of hope and change. A different reality has marked his presidency. His record on the economy the past four years does not suggest he would lead in the direction the nation must go in the next four years,” the editorial posted on the Register’s website said.
“Voters should give Mitt Romney a chance to correct the nation’s fiscal course and to implode the partisan gridlock that has shackled Washington and the rest of America — with the understanding that he would face the same assessment in four years if he does not succeed,” the editorial piece ended.
The announcement from Iowa’s largest newspaper comes just days after President Obama had an off-the-record then turned on-the-record conversation with the publisher and editor of the Register that prompted an op-ed from the paper about the condition of the interview.
Romney has some ground to make up in the state, which awards six electoral votes, as last week’s NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll of Iowa showed Romney trailing Obama in the state -– 51 percent to 43 percent. Romney narrowly lost the Iowa Caucus back in January to former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum.
When voters receive their Sunday paper in the morning, they will not only find the editorial endorsing Romney but also a copy of the “Mittzine”-– a pro-Romney superPAC publication about the GOP nominee and being dropped in five battleground states
Romney travels to Davenport, Iowa, on Monday for a rally. His running mate, Paul Ryan, is also expected to head back to the Hawkeye State within the next nine days leading up to the election.