More Endorsements for Obama: Spanish-Language Newspapers Announce Support in New York and L.A.

Maybe not unprecedented like the Chicago Tribune‘s nor unexpected like Colin Powell‘s, but there were two other important endorsements for Barack Obama in the last few days.

Los Angeles’ La Opinión and New York’s El Diario/La Prensa, two of the nation’s oldest Spanish-language dailies, made public their endorsements of the Democratic candidate on Friday.

El Diario/La Prensa endorses Obama.

Both newspapers are owned by ImpreMedia which bills itself as, “The No. 1 Hispanic News and Information Company in the U.S. in Online and Print.” [In the interest of full disclosure, Feet in Two Worlds has worked with editors and reporters at both papers.] The two dailies carry considerable weight in the Hispanic communities in Los Angeles and New York, and beyond.

El Diario ran its endorsement on the cover, under the headline: “Necessary Change. A vote for Obama.” [The full text is available in Spanish and English.]

“Our country is perched on the edge of a cliff,” the newspaper said. “We are staring down a growing economic crisis.”

It added the Iraq and Afghanistan wars have “no end in sight,” and in the U.S., families have suffered from “stagnant wages, and the rising costs of everything from gasoline to food to health care.

Today, there are more children living in poverty in this country than there were a decade ago. And on principles of fairness and humanity, we have gone backwards.

Our next president must have the capacity, judgment and vision to restore confidence, both here and abroad. El Diario/La Prensa endorses Senator Barack Obama as the leader ready to redirect the United States of America towards its promise.

La Opinión, in turn, said the U.S. needs “a different vision and a new focus to the problems that have been dragging on for decades. Barack Obama is the right person to begin a new cycle of renewal as President of the United States.” [Here’s the full text, in Spanish and English.]

Obama personifies the change this country needs. He has demonstrated that he is a different kind of Democrat, one with a profound social conscience, one who values the role of the individual as agent of change. Obama’s platform is practical, recognizing that there are no magical solutions, and that we will need the commitment and efforts of all of us.

As for John McCain, the newspapers were pretty harsh with him. The Angeleno daily called him “a disappointment,” while the New York paper said the Republican “can’t see the forest for the trees” on Iraq and Afghanistan and “has run an angry and divisive campaign.”

“We supported him during the primaries last February as the most attractive Republican candidate,” La Opinión said of McCain, “but he is not the same today as he used to be. He has replaced his moderation with a rigid ideological orientation to please his party’s conservative base.”

Pointing to the issues most of their readers care about, the newspapers reflected on the candidates’ positions on the economy, education, the foreign wars, healthcare, and –of course– immigration.

“Both candidates have a decent record in this matter,” La Opinión acknowledged, “although we feel that, in the present political climate, Obama would have the better chance to get comprehensive immigration passed.”

El Diario said, “While Senator John McCain once appeared as a reasonable interlocutor on immigration reform, he gradually pandered to Republican ultra conservatives by promoting a two-step process emphasizing border enforcement. Senator Obama clearly outlines a far superior plan that will take a smarter approach to immigration, including bringing undocumented immigrants out of the shadows.”

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