Editorial: Northern Star stops endorsing candidates in future elections

For the past week, the Northern Star’s editorial board has reevaluated its stance on whether to endorse candidates.

This stems from a Jan. 22 editorial from the Chicago Sun-Times in which the editorial board announced its decision to no longer endorse candidates running for election. The board argued it had “come to doubt the value of candidate endorsements by this newspaper or any newspaper, especially in a day when a multitude of information sources allow even a casual voter to be better informed than ever before.”

Two days later, the Chicago Tribune’s editorial board offered a rebuttal, saying that though it respected the Sun-Times’ decision, it will continue endorsing in order “to inform our readers and encourage them to push an agenda for a more vital community.”

In DeKalb, the Daily Chronicle has not published local endorsements for years, according to the article on page 3 of today’s paper.

After taking these opinions into consideration, the Northern Star has decided to forgo endorsing political candidates for the foreseeable future.

In this age, local and regional newspapers struggle to maintain credibility each day. Many publications (including our own) struggle against the presumption that they lean toward the left or right side of the political fence. By endorsing a candidate, we reaffirm this presumption.

We believe that in order to maintain credibility, the Northern Star should strive to as unbiased as possible, especially when it comes to election season.

This doesn’t mean we’re going to stop all coverage of local candidates. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. We at the Star plan to provide profiles on candidates and coverage of events leading up to the primaries.

We will write editorials; however, we plan to dedicate our time to issues affecting students and DeKalb residents, not the candidates themselves.

At a time where any and all information is at our fingertips, it’s up to you, the voter, to figure out who represents your views best.

As for us, we’ll help guide you to the policies that could influence that process.

And that’s the way it should be.