After a difficult week in which rival Newt Gingrich continued to surge in the polls, Mitt Romney got some good news out of Iowa: an endorsement from the Sioux City Journal.
“Within this year’s Republican presidential field, Romney again stands out as the candidate who is best prepared through experience, skills and qualities to lead the country,” the paper’s endorsement reads. “Today the Journal endorses the businessman, former Massachusetts governor and former Winter Olympics CEO in the Jan. 3 caucuses.”
Romney secured their backing four years ago as well, but ultimately lost the Iowa race to Mike Huckabee. The editors largely ignored the knocks against him over his various flip flops and his Massachusetts health care law’s reliance on an individual mandate, addressing them only in passing.
“We do not question Romney’s conservative credentials, whether the issue is economics, national defense or social issues,” they wrote.
In the end they focused their endorsement on his electability and his experience in business.
“Through successful, executive decision-making experience in both the private and public sectors, Romney understands economics and fiscal principles in a real-world way. In other words, he’s walked the walk,” the editors write. “In this year’s Republican field, he is the candidate most capable of not only articulating a blueprint for a stronger economy and the restoration of fiscal sanity in Washington, but of assembling a high-caliber team of advisors, forging consensus within Congress and rallying the nation in support of it.”
Romney currently trails Gingrich in Iowa according to the TPM Poll Average, a gap that could widen if the Herman Cain’s supporters break towards the former Speaker.
Benjy Sarlin is a reporter for Talking Points Memo and co-writes the campaign blog, TPM2012. He previously reported for The Daily Beast/Newsweek as their Washington Correspondent and covered local politics for the New York Sun.