The State endorses Huntsman … for the day

Yesterday, under the headline, “Huntsman could bring us back together,” The State, South Carolina’s largest newspaper, endorsed Jon Huntsman:

We need a president who can work within our poisonous political environment to solve our nation’s problems, not simply score partisan points. Someone who understands that negotiation is essential in a representative democracy, and that there are good ideas across the political spectrum. Someone who has a well-defined set of core values but is not so rigid that he ignores new information and new conditions. Someone who has shown himself to be honest and trustworthy. And competent. Someone whose positions are well-reasoned and based on the world as it is rather than as he pretends it to be. Someone with the temperament and judgment and experience to be taken seriously as the commander in chief and leader of the free world.

We think Mr. Romney could demonstrate those characteristics. Mr. Huntsman already does. And we are proud to endorse him for the Republican nomination for president of the United States.

It was hardly the first endorsement for Huntsman—who has long been considered the liberal media’s darling and was the only candidate to get Vogue treatment—but it was certainly the most short-lived and ill-timed. Only hours after The State issued its ringing endorsement, news broke that Huntsman would be suspending his campaign.

While today’s State story (“S.C. backers disappointed Huntsman is out of race”) makes no explicit mention of yesterday’s endorsement, or any disappointment in backing the candidate the same day it was announced that he was dropping out, The Guardian caught up with Cindi Scoppe, The State’s associate editor who wrote the editorial and who had this to say:

“It is rather like having gone through a courtship for some period of time and finally making love with a man, for him to suddenly turn around and say, ‘you know what, I think I’m gay’.”

The Washington Post may have been on to something here

Has America ever needed a media watchdog more than now? Help us by joining CJR today.

Erika Fry is a former assistant editor at CJR.