List of United States presidential election endorsements made by The New York Times

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Since its founding in 1851, The New York Times has endorsed a candidate for president of the United States in every election in the paper's history. The first endorsement was in 1852 for Winfield Scott and the most recent one was for Joe Biden in 2020. Its first seven endorsements after Scott were for Republicans, and it was not until 1884 that it backed its first Democrat, Grover Cleveland. In total it has endorsed the Democratic candidate twenty eight times, the Republican thirteen times (the last being Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956), a Whig candidate once (Winfield Scott in 1852), and a third-party candidate once (John M. Palmer in 1896).

Primary election[edit]

General election[edit]

Year Candidate Result Endorsement Other major candidate(s) Ref.
1852   Winfield Scott Lost   Franklin Pierce [6]
1856   John C. Frémont Lost James Buchanan Millard Fillmore [7]
1860   Abraham Lincoln Won "Things will go on very much as they have hitherto—except that we shall have honesty and manliness instead of meanness and corruption in the Executive departments, and a decent regard for the opinions of mankind in the tone and talk of the Government on the subject of Slavery."[8]   Stephen A. Douglas   John C. Breckinridge   John Bell [9]
1864 Abraham Lincoln Won "Loyal men can congratulate themselves not only on this clearness of issue between war and peace, but upon the development of the fact that this issue is indeed no other than Union or Disunion."[10] George B. McClellan
1868 Ulysses S. Grant Won "It should be enough that he realizes the need of peace, and upholds a policy which, with many defects, secures the restoration of the Union on the broad basis of order and justice."[11] Horatio Seymour
1872 Ulysses S. Grant Won "Greeley's election would mean the unsettling of business all over the country. Gen. Grant's would instantly lead to the recovery of trade from the excitement of a Presidential election, and insure the continued prosperity of the entire Union."[12] Horace Greeley
1876 Rutherford B. Hayes Won "Mr. Hayes' letter of acceptance was prompt, unequivocal and more pronounced in two or three important particulars than the platform on which he had been nominated."[13] Samuel Tilden
1880 James Garfield Won "The people are asked to choose between a man like this, trained in all the activities and duties of civil life, and one who knows nothing but the camp and the barrack-room. To state this fact is to make the most conclusive argument in favor of the civilian candidate."[14] Winfield S. Hancock
1884 Grover Cleveland Won "Gov. Cleveland has given indisputable proofs that he is independent of partisan tyranny, and that there is not in party rule any power than can disturb or weaken his devotion to the highest interests of the people."[15] James G. Blaine
1888 Grover Cleveland Lost "His great ability is now candidly recognized. His perfect honesty and sincerity are no longer questioned save by reckless and malignant partisans. His successes and his failures, his titles to applause, honor, and respect, and his acts that have called for censure or justified want of confidence are recorded in an open book."[16] Benjamin Harrison
1892 Grover Cleveland Won "Under our Constitution the character of the President is an element of the greatest importance. The powers of the Executive office are very extensive, and its duties of the most and responsible character. The direction of foreign relations is, in the first instance, entirely in his hands."[17] Benjamin Harrison James B. Weaver
1896 John M. Palmer Lost "If the Democrats in this State . . . will vote according to their convictions and their preference, as honest citizens ought always to vote, a majority of the party will be found standing firmly by its ancient faith, and its prospects for the future will be vastly better than if it goes down to ignominious defeat held together by a blind devotion to 'regularity.'"[18] William McKinley William Jennings Bryan
1900 William McKinley Won "There are two questions most prominent this year—what will be the policy of the Republican or of the Democratic Party with reference to our recently acquired possessions, and what the policy of the respective parties as to the currency and finance?"[19] William Jennings Bryan
1904 Alton B. Parker Lost "The antithesis of Roosevelt in temperament and opinion, and quite the equal of the strenuous President in moral courage and political sagacity."[20] Theodore Roosevelt
1908 William Howard Taft Won "We know that public policies, the old and the new alike, will be executed by Mr. Taft reasonably, with calmness, with sanity. He is less impulsive than Mr. Roosevelt, not given to disturbing utterance, averse to spectacular and ill-judged display. We know nothing of the kind about Mr. Bryan, for he has not been tried. We do not know that his mind is unsteady, his principles unsafe."[21] William Jennings Bryan
1912 Woodrow Wilson Won "It is to the interest of the Nation that the Republican party should be preserved as an organized, coherent opposition. The public welfare is not preserved by the collapse of a great party, by the rise of discordant factions in place of a compact organization."[22] William Howard Taft Theodore Roosevelt Eugene V. Debs
1916 Woodrow Wilson Won "No one can deny that he has honorably kept our country at peace amid infinite difficulties and temptations."[23] Charles Evans Hughes
1920 James M. Cox Lost "He is no champion of privilege any more than he is an apostle of revolution. He is a man of affairs, of the soundest common sense and good judgment. In time of peace he would do away with war taxes and, like Mr. Tilden, substitute for them revenues sufficient for the expenditures of Government economically administered."[24] Warren G. Harding
1924 John W. Davis Lost "All the merely petty and spiteful arrows aimed at him have fallen blunted and broken from his shield."[25] Calvin Coolidge Robert M. La Follette, Sr.
1928 Alfred E. Smith Lost "The duty of all to whom the conditions under prohibition seem the most important concern of the nation is plainly to vote for Alfred E. Smith. He is the first leader in a national sense to whom they have been able to turn since enforcement became a scandal and social consequences of prohibition became serious."[26] Herbert Hoover
1932 Franklin D. Roosevelt Won "He has carried a winning personality into his campaigning, but has not degraded his standards as a high-bred and educated man."[27] Herbert Hoover
1936 Franklin D. Roosevelt Won "We believe that in a very fundamental way the President's re-election will provide insurance against radicalism of the sort which the United States has most to fear."[28] Alf Landon
1940 Wendell Willkie Lost "As matters stand, the choice before us has been narrowed to this question: In whose hands, Mr. Roosevelt's or Mr. Willkie's, is the safety of the American people likely to be more secure during the critical test that lies ahead?"[29] Franklin D. Roosevelt
1944 Franklin D. Roosevelt Won "With all the major new policies of the New Deal we have no sympathy. But when we weigh the balance on domestic issues we must ask: What alternatives do Mr. Dewey and the Republicans offer us?"[30] Thomas E. Dewey
1948 Thomas E. Dewey Lost "The Mr. Dewey of 1948, whom we now support, has both a firmer grasp of foreign policy and a more active part in making it than the Mr. Dewey of either 1940 or 1944."[31] Harry S. Truman Strom Thurmond
1952 Dwight D. Eisenhower Won "We would make this choice, despite the fact that we have disagreed, and openly expressed our disagreement, with some of the positions taken by General Eisenhower in the course of this campaign."[32] Adlai E. Stevenson
1956 Dwight D. Eisenhower Won "In the area of many fundamental matters—for example, at home, the difficult problem of school integration, and, abroad, the question of relaxing tensions in the Far East and the Near East—the approach of both these men is to conciliate rather than coerce, to clarify rather than confuse, to unify rather than disrupt."[33] Adlai E. Stevenson
1960 John F. Kennedy Won "Two considerations have carried special weight in determining our judgment. One of these is a matter of foreign policy. The other is a question of assuring a unified direction of the nation's affairs at a difficult moment in history."[34] Richard Nixon
1964 Lyndon B. Johnson Won "Rarely in modern times and never in recent years has there been a campaign in which the issues facing the nation have been so inadequately discussed by the two leading candidates; rarely has a campaign added so little to public knowledge; rarely has its end been so welcome."[35] Barry Goldwater
1968 Hubert H. Humphrey Lost "In the span of this campaign, proof that his judgment is superior to that of Mr. Nixon has been provided by their respective choices for Vice President . . . In the brief period since nomination, Gov. Spiro T. Agnew has already proved from his injudicious, intemperate remarks that he is utterly inadequate."[36] Richard Nixon George Wallace
1972 George McGovern Lost "It is in the incumbent's very deficiencies of spirit, of vision, of purpose and of principle that in our judgment Mr. McGovern stands in most striking and favorable contrast."[37] Richard Nixon
1976 Jimmy Carter Won "He and Senator Mondale have demonstrated both in the broad sweep of political philosophy and in the narrow focus of specific detail a sense of direction and of leadership, based on a humanitarian, socially oriented, essentially liberal approach to most major questions of domestic and foreign policy."[38] Gerald Ford
1980 Jimmy Carter Lost "For all the wobbling, Jimmy Carter has forthrightly often bravely upheld intelligent and humane values on a roster of issues."[39] Ronald Reagan John B. Anderson
1984 Walter Mondale Lost "Walter Mondale has all the dramatic flair of a trigonometry teacher. His Nordic upbringing makes it hard for him to brag. The first debate may have been the high point of his political personality. But there's power in his plainness."[40] Ronald Reagan
1988 Michael Dukakis Lost "George Bush is not the nasty propagandist that his harsh attacks have made him seem. Michael Dukakis is not the unfocused incompetent that his late and lame responses have made him seem. Both are better men, and better potential Presidents than the images they project on television."[41] George H. W. Bush
1992 Bill Clinton Won "Bill Clinton, though highly regarded by other governors, has not previously been tested on the national stage. He has, when pressed, shown a discomfiting tendency to blur truthful clarity. But he, much more than his rivals, manifests qualities of leadership: intellect, years of immersion in government, the capacity to attract first-rate people—and the perseverance that has carried him through a brutal campaign."[42] George H. W. Bush Ross Perot
1996 Bill Clinton Won "The Presidency he once dreamed is still within his reach if he brings the requisite integrity to the next four years."[43] Bob Dole Ross Perot
2000 Al Gore Lost "This is ... the first presidential campaign in recent history centered on an argument over how best to use real, bird-in-the-hand resources to address age-old domestic problems while also defining the United States' role in a world evermore dependent on it for farsighted international leadership."[44] George W. Bush
2004 John Kerry Lost "Time and again, history invited George W. Bush to play a heroic role, and time and again he chose the wrong course. We believe that with John Kerry as president, the nation will do better."[45] George W. Bush
2008 Barack Obama Won "Mr. Obama has met challenge after challenge, growing as a leader and putting real flesh on his early promises of hope and change. He has shown a cool head and sound judgment. We believe he has the will and the ability to forge the broad political consensus that is essential to finding solutions to this nation’s problems."[46] John McCain
2012 Barack Obama Won "President Obama has governed from a deep commitment to the role of government in fostering growth, forming sensible budget policies that are not dedicated to protecting the powerful, and saving the social safety net to protect the powerless."[47] Mitt Romney
2016 Hillary Clinton Lost "Our endorsement is rooted in respect for her intellect, experience and courage."[48] Donald Trump
2020 Joe Biden Won "The former vice president is the leader our nation needs now"[49] Donald Trump [50]


  1. ^ a b East, Kristen (March 5, 2000). "Primary Endorsements; John McCain and Al Gore". The New York Times. Retrieved February 27, 2020.
  2. ^ "A Primary Endorsement". The New York Times. February 26, 2004. Retrieved February 26, 2020.
  3. ^ a b "New York Times endorses Clinton, backs McCain over Giuliani". New York: CNN. January 25, 2008. Retrieved February 26, 2020.
  4. ^ a b East, Kristen (January 30, 2016). "The New York Times endorses Clinton, Kasich". Politico. Retrieved February 26, 2020.
  5. ^ LeBlanc, Paul; Turrell, Liz (January 20, 2020). "New York Times editorial board endorses Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar for Democratic nomination". Washington: CNN. Retrieved February 26, 2020.
  6. ^ Raymond, Henry J. (August 10, 1852). "THE CAMPAIGN TIMES" (PDF). No. Vol. I No. 279. New-York Daily Times. Retrieved February 20, 2022.
  7. ^ "LATEST INTELLIGENCE" (PDF). No. Vol. V No. 1542. New-York Daily Times. August 28, 1856. Retrieved February 20, 2022.
  8. ^ "What's to Happen" (PDF). The New York Times. 1860.
  9. ^ "New York Times Endorsements Through the Ages". The New York Times. September 23, 2016. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 4, 2017.
  10. ^ "The End of the Canvass - Its Issues Clearly Made Up" (PDF). The New York Times. 1864.
  11. ^ "Grants Election a Necessity" (PDF). The New York Times. 1868.
  12. ^ "A Few Considerations" (PDF). The New York Times. 1872.
  13. ^ "The Two Candidates" (PDF). The New York Times. 1876.
  14. ^ "Republican Nomination" (PDF). The New York Times. 1880.
  15. ^ "The Man for the Time" (PDF). The New York Times. 1884.
  16. ^ "Mr. Clevelands Renomination" (PDF). The New York Times. 1888.
  17. ^ "The Democratic Candidate" (PDF). The New York Times. 1892.
  18. ^ "The Choice" (PDF). The New York Times. 1896.
  19. ^ "The Choice" (PDF). The New York Times. 1900.
  20. ^ "Approval of Parker's Stand" (PDF). The New York Times. 1904.
  21. ^ "Taft or Bryan?" (PDF). The New York Times. 1908.
  22. ^ "Wilson First, Taft Second" (PDF). The New York Times. 1912.
  23. ^ "Mr. Wilson as a Leader" (PDF). The New York Times. 1916.
  24. ^ "The Cause and the Candidate" (PDF). The New York Times. 1920.
  25. ^ "The Question of Fitness" (PDF). The New York Times. 1924.
  26. ^ "Voting on Prohibition" (PDF). The New York Times. 1928.
  27. ^ "The Roosevelt Campaign" (PDF). The New York Times. 1932.
  28. ^ "A Reasoned Choice" (PDF). The New York Times. 1936.
  29. ^ "The Choice of a Candidate" (PDF). The New York Times. 1940.
  30. ^ "The Choice of a Candidate" (PDF). The New York Times. 1944.
  31. ^ "The Choice of a Candidate" (PDF). The New York Times. 1948.
  32. ^ "A Choice Reaffirmed" (PDF). The New York Times. 1952.
  33. ^ "The Choice of A Candidate" (PDF). The New York Times. 1956.
  34. ^ "The Choice of A Candidate" (PDF). The New York Times. 1960.
  35. ^ "The Campaign Ends" (PDF). The New York Times. 1964.
  36. ^ "Humphrey for President" (PDF). The New York Times. 1968.
  37. ^ "The Presidential Issue" (PDF). The New York Times. 1972.
  38. ^ "The Presidential Choice" (PDF). The New York Times. 1976.
  39. ^ "President Wobble and What Jimmy Carter Has Learned" (PDF). The New York Times. 1980.
  40. ^ "Mondale for President" (PDF). The New York Times. 1984.
  41. ^ "Two Good Men" (PDF). The New York Times. 1988.
  42. ^ "George Bush's Failure. Bill Clinton's Promise" (PDF). The New York Times. 1992.
  43. ^ "Bill Clinton for President" (PDF). The New York Times. 1996.
  44. ^ "Al Gore for President" (PDF). The New York Times. 2000.
  45. ^ "John Kerry for President" (PDF). The New York Times. 2004.
  46. ^ "Barack Obama for President". The New York Times. October 23, 2008.
  47. ^ "Barack Obama for Re-election". The New York Times. October 27, 2012.
  48. ^ "Hillary Clinton for President". The New York Times. September 24, 2016.
  49. ^ "Elect Joe Biden, America". The New York Times.
  50. ^ "Elect Joe Biden, America". The New York Times. October 6, 2020. Retrieved October 6, 2020.