The Des Moines Register, the largest paper in Iowa that also launched President Barack Obama's 2008 election into office, broke their forty-year-long streak of backing Democratic presidential candidates. In 2008, the Des Moines Register backed Obama and commended his background, calls for Americans to join together, and his stance on the economic crisis that was just beginning. For this election, they cited the main priorities to be reviving the economy, spurring job growth, moving toward a balanced budget and reducing the deficit (Mehta). According to them, Romney's experience as an executive at a hedge fund and running the Olympics would prove useful in encouraging growth through lowering taxes, increasing energy production, expanding trade, and balancing the federal budget (Laible).
"Which candidate could forge the compromises in Congress to achieve these goals? When the question is framed in those terms, Mitt Romney emerges the stronger candidate," wrote the paper. "Romney has made rebuilding the economy his No. 1 campaign priority - and rightly so." The paper continued on to describe Romney's accomplishments as the governor of Massachusetts, in his businesses, and in helping to turn around the 2002 Olympics (Mehta).
The paper also recounted Obama's tenure as president in a less than satisfactory tone. "The president's best efforts to resuscitate the stumbling economy have fallen short. Nothing indicates it would change with a second term in the White House," the paper wrote, although they did speak kindly of President Obama (Mehta).
Although it is unclear whether the Des Moines Register's endorsement will have much affect on voters' decisions, it is significant because the paper has always offered their support to Democrats. In fact, the last Republican president they endorsed was President Nixon in 1972. The endorsement may also echo the sentiments of Iowa voters (Mehta).