March 18, 2018
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Seriously, why we endorse

John Clarke Russ | BDN
John Clarke Russ | BDN
Sen. Olympia Snowe talks with the Bangor Daily News editorial board and newsroom staff in August 2011.


We know you can’t wait to read what the Bangor Daily News writes next on the editorial page and that you will agree with every one of our candidate endorsements.

Let us tell you upfront we’re looking forward to all the positive emails, letters and online comments that will come after we announce our picks for president, U.S. Senate and Congress. Truly, the feedback is a joy.

In fact, this year, with a tight presidential race and a six-person U.S. Senate contest to replace a political giant like Olympia Snowe, we’re not anticipating much negative reaction to anything we write. Readers, after all, know we’re always correct.

We hope you get our point: Can you imagine a Maine where no one debated one another? Disagreement, as you know well, dear reader, is where conversation gets good. It’s where people learn.

That’s why we endorse candidates — to start or continue the conversation. You don’t have to agree with the endorsements we write. But at the very least, we hope they make you think.

Endorsements should propel debate that helps people make decisions.

If we regularly explain our opinion on major issues that affect Mainers — such as state budgets, energy, federal policies, taxes, health care, economic development — why wouldn’t we also tell you our thoughts about some of the state’s most important future decision-makers?

We talk to people every day about state and local problems. An election gives us the opportunity to explain which candidates appear to offer the clearest, most pragmatic ideas about ways to tackle issues and improve Mainers’ livelihoods.

By figuring out whom to endorse, we go through what voters experience. We consider the options and make a decision based on candidates’ vision and qualifications. In most cases, we’ve had a chance to meet at length with the candidates, which helps inform our choice.

In the end, our decision to endorse candidates for president, U.S. Senate and Congress, and to write endorsements on Questions 1-5, is based on our mission: “We report the news of Maine every day, honestly and with integrity; we advocate for the best interests of Maine; we improve life in Maine by connecting people through information.”

Not to mention, we know you will vote for whomever we recommend.

Have feedback? Want to know more? Send us ideas for follow-up stories.

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