The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and Wisconsin State Journal have both endorsed Democrat Barack Obama. James Baughman, Director UW Madison's School of Journalism and Mass Communication, says this hasn't happened since Bob Dole versus Bill Clinton when in 1996 both papers endorsed the Republican Dole.
The Journal Sentinel's endorsement took place Sunday but many national papers backed a candidate weeks ago. Baughman says publications are endorsing earlier in the campaign season than they used to, in hopes of becoming "part of the conversation" running up to Election Day.
The UW professor says newspapers backing candidates generally has little influence won presidential races and carries more weight with city or county elections.
Baughman says a paper's endorsement normally involves the editor, publisher and editorial page editors. However he says a publication's owner may step in and trump their decision.