Conservative Arizona paper endorses Clinton

·Managing Editor

The Arizona Republic endorsed Hillary Clinton on Tuesday night, becoming the latest traditionally Republican newspaper to back the Democratic nominee.

In a passionate editorial, the largest newspaper in Arizona argued that Republican Donald Trump was fundamentally unfit for the presidency. It was the first time the Republic had endorsed a Democrat.

“Trump’s inability to control himself or be controlled by others represents a real threat to our national security. His recent efforts to stay on script are not reassuring. They are phony. The president commands our nuclear arsenal. Trump can’t command his own rhetoric,” the paper opined.

“Being the leader of the free world requires a sense of propriety that Trump lacks,” it added.

The Republic’s editorial heaped praise on Clinton, who it says “retains her centrist roots” despite tacking left during the Democratic primary. “Clinton retains her composure under pressure. She’s tough. She doesn’t back down,” it argued. “Trump responds to criticism with the petulance of verbal spit wads.”

The endorsement is especially notable because the Republic has always backed Republicans for president.

“Since The Arizona Republic began publication in 1890, we have never endorsed a Democrat over a Republican for president. Never. This reflects a deep philosophical appreciation for conservative ideals and Republican principles. This year is different. The 2016 Republican candidate is not conservative and he is not qualified,” the editorial said.

Other Republican-leaning newspaper editorial boards have also recently thrown their support to Clinton.

At the end of last week, the Cincinnati Enquirer endorsed Clinton while noting that it had “supported Republicans for president for almost a century.” The paper continued: “But this is not a traditional race, and these are not traditional times. Our country needs calm, thoughtful leadership to deal with the challenges we face at home and abroad. We need a leader who will bring out the best in all Americans, not the worst.”

And earlier this month, the Dallas Morning News announced that for the first time in 75 years, it was backing a Democrat for president. “Resume vs. resume, judgment vs. judgment, this election is no contest,” the paper wrote in its Sept. 7 editorial, a day after publishing a scathing anti-Trump opinion piece.

“Trump is — or has been — at odds with nearly every GOP ideal this newspaper holds dear,” the earlier editorial said. “Donald Trump is no Republican and certainly no conservative.”