NEW BRITAIN, CT—Calling him the "best person to lead this nation forward," the editors of The Recorder, Central Connecticut State University's student newspaper, officially endorsed Barack Obama for president in a front-page editorial this week.
Titled "Our Choice For Tomorrow," the 600-word endorsement—which follows recent staff editorials on late-night student shuttle service and expanding the use of DevilDollars meal-plan credits to off-campus eateries—carefully lays out why Obama would serve the nation better than Mitt Romney, whom the newspaper called a "worthy candidate" but not the one most qualified to serve in "the highest post in the land."
"The important decision of whom to support in the 2012 election is not easy, and it is not a task we take lightly," wrote the editorial board of the newspaper that is published each Wednesday during the academic year. "The road ahead will be difficult, with continued challenges such as climate change, the debt, and ongoing global threats, but we believe Mr. Obama is prepared to deal with the hard choices of our time."
"Despite not being able to turn the country around completely during his first term, the president has nonetheless delivered on many issues," the editorial continued. "That's why The Recorder offers its support to Barack Obama in 2012."
The publication praised Obama's "bold vision," citing his commitments to higher education, technology, and "helping the poor and the environment." The editors also noted that they were particularly impressed with Obama's visit to the school's campus two years earlier.
Despite its endorsement, the editorial aimed to serve as a "wake-up call" for Obama, sternly warning the incumbent that "slogans won't be enough this time around." The Recorder's staff, whose members receive four English Department credits for their work on the newspaper, went on to offer the president even more pointed words, stating that it was imperative he "stand up for the middle class" if he wanted to triumph in November.
Flanked by articles on the volleyball team's recent 3-1 victory over the Fairleigh Dickinson Knights and an annual drag talent show planned for Greek Week, the editorial noted that it was providing a realistic assessment of Obama's first term by not only focusing on his successes in office, but also candidly shedding light on his "share of failures."
Listing several unfulfilled promises and questionable policies that "did not please the editorial board of The Recorder," the editors went on to state that it was their duty as members of the press to ask tough questions, and declared the newspaper would "lend its support to Barack Obama, but not let him off the hook, either." In particular, they drew attention to a number of issues on which, they asserted, the president would have to "step up" and show some "real leadership."
"Mr. President, we must ask you: What do you plan on doing about Guantánamo? And what about the situation in Syria, which has grown increasingly messy?" inquired the publication with a circulation of 1,500 copies that is usually picked up in the student union and flipped directly to the crossword puzzle. "These are real concerns that matter to the people of this country, and they deserve an answer."
According to sources, The Recorder called an all-staff meeting last week at its offices in the basement of the East Asian Studies building to discuss which candidate to endorse, scheduling the assembly on a Sunday night so as not to conflict with the editor-in-chief's intramural broomball game.
"We definitely took into consideration that Mitt Romney had success as a businessman," said 19-year-old Alfredo Cortes, the publication's managing editor and also the contributor of a twice-monthly house and dubstep music review column. "There was a pretty long discussion about who would do better on the economy, and a couple people were upset with the president's unclear stance on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, but eventually we decided Obama would be best overall, and we felt it was very important to get our paper's voice out there behind him."
In making its endorsement, The Recorder acknowledged the "big expectations on the president's shoulders" and called on him to live up to his ideals. It also appealed directly to the nation's 140 million likely voters, commenting that the "future is in [their] hands."
"America stands at an important crossroads, and we look to Barack Obama for a brighter tomorrow," concluded the newspaper of record for almost 10,000 undergraduates. "Hope? Change? We certainly hope so."