The editorial board of Windy City Times is endorsing Hillary Rodham Clinton for president of the United States.
For the past 16 years of the 31 years we have been publishing, Windy City Times has only endorsed once for any political office, and that was Barack Obama for president in 2012.
Just as in 2012, this country is divided and at a pivot-point in history. There are some who want it to go back to an imagined "good old days" of racial segregation and failed trickle-down economics. They want to rewrite the last eight years of Obama as a failure, when most of the objective analysis shows that Obama and his team pulled us from the brink of depression and into a slow climb back. They want to blame Obama for the racism and division that they themselves have encouraged.
The right-wing elements of the GOP have created their own mess, and their Frankenstein experiment has spawned Donald Trump. They have no one to blame but themselves.
But this endorsement of Clinton is not just about her opponent, perhaps the worst candidate for president of the United States, ever. Those who have paid attention and who are not blinded by xenophobia, racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia and the like know that Trump is a narcissist with no empathy and no real plan to improve this country. He is the true emperor with no clothes, just hate seeping out of his every pore.
He is unfit to be dog catcher, much less president. And that is not to demean dog catchers.
This endorsement is also not ignoring the main third-party candidates, Gary Johnson and Jill Stein. We understand there is great passion for these two, even if most of that passion is built from the hatred of the Dem and GOP nominees. But Johnson and Stein can't run this country, even if they had a running start. They have no real qualifications, experience, or judgment to lead our domestic and international agenda. They, too, are unqualified.
No, this endorsement is about the Democratic candidate herself. She does not receive this rare endorsement as a default selection for president. She is among the most qualified candidates for U.S. president in history. She comes in ready to lead. In the eight years since she first ran, she has gained even more knowledge of international politics as Secretary of State, building on her years in the Senate, as First Lady, and her decades as an advocate for women and children.
Don't take just our word for it, of course. Dozens of major newspapers across the country, ones that rarely if ever back a Democrat, are endorsing Clinton this year. This is an unprecedented race in an era of vast change. Change impacting the economy, the environment, the political landscape, and social justice movements at home and abroad.
Just because Clinton is qualified to do this job does not mean she has not made mistakes. There is no one that makes it to that level of public service and achievement, living in the spotlight for five decades, without some baggage. Elizabeth Warren shines so bright because she has only recently entered the electoral arena. If she served longer, she would likely have made some compromises. Even Bernie Sanders made compromises on guns because of his electoral base, and his own political career had many years of non-participation. Clinton never stopped. She has had far more time in the spotlightand as a woman that has meant an even tougher road. Perhaps not everyone would make the same mistakes as Clinton, and her lapse in judgment about emails, speeches and the appearances of conflict at the Clinton Foundation are troubling, but these things do not disqualify her to be U.S. president.
For the LGBTQ community, there is not even a close second in this race for president. Clinton will continue the policies of Obama, the most pro-LGBTQ president in history by a landslide. And, she has promised to expand on those gains in areas of transgender violence, working to end HIV/AIDS, for equality and more. She will not be perfect, but she is the perfect choice.
This is the Windy City Times endorsement for president of the United States. For Chicago, our community and for our nation, Clinton is the one to do the job.
Tracy Baim, Publisher