In the modern political age, it is unclear how many — if any — voters take their cues from newspaper endorsements. But the dearth of major newspaper endorsements for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is, if nothing else, an indication of how solidly the major media is opposed to his candidacy. While most major newspaper editorial boards have historically endorsed the Democratic nominee for President, even Republican friendly newspapers like the Dallas Morning News have broken with tradition this year to endorse former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Trump scored his first major newspaper endorsement of the cycle yesterday when the Sheldon Adelson-owned Las Vegas Review-Journal endorsed him for President. According to the newspaper's editorial board, "[h]istory tells us that agents for reform often generate fear and alarm among those intent on preserving their cushy sinecures. It’s hardly a shock, then, that the 2016 campaign has produced a barrage of unceasing vitriol directed toward Mr. Trump."
The Review-Journal editorial board praised Trump's "corporate sensibility," which they believe will help him challenge an "ossified Beltway culture" and reform the tax code. Trump's view of the Supreme Court also played a key role in the editorial board's thinking:
Mr. Trump prefers nominees who recognize the Constitution’s checks on federal authority as a bulwark against tyranny. Mrs. Clinton would be a disaster in this regard.
Protections enshrined in no fewer than five amendments in the Bill of Rights could be eliminated or diminished under a progressive high court.
Trump could hardly have picked a better time or newspaper to land his first major endorsement. Trump badly needs to carry Nevada to keep alive his shrinking hopes for an Electoral College victory. According to the RealClearPolitics average of polls, Clinton currently leads Trump by an average of 4.2 percent in Nevada. Some prominent Nevada Republicans — including Senate candidate Joe Heck — have publicly stated that they will not support Trump, while others like Gov. Brian Sandoval have remained ambiguous.