USA Today Editorial Board calls Trump 'unfit' for presidency

KHOU 11 Anchor Greg Hurst spoke with one of USA Today's editors after the paper's editorial board published an article saying Republican candidate Donald Trump is unfit for the presidency.

In USA Today's 34-year history, the Editorial Board has never taken sides in the presidential race - until now.

The Editorial Board published an article on Friday calling Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump 'unfit' for presidency. 

The board claims Trump lacks the temperament, knowledge, steadiness and honesty that America needs from it presidents.

USA Today says the editorial opinions are separate from the news staff and readers can expect the paper to continue to cover the presidential election objectively. 

KHOU 11 Anchor Greg Hurst spoke with USA Today Editorial Board Editor Bill Sternberg on Friday.

Sternberg said the Board decided to publish the article now because the team wanted to give Trump the benefit of the doubt. 

"We wanted to see if he could change, if he could pivot, whether he would mature; and frankly what we see is what we get, we haven't seen any of that." said Sternberg.

With only about 40 days until the election, he said it seemed like the right time.

"The polls are close. Early voting has started. We've been able to process the first debate and therefore, this seemed like an appropriate time to weigh in and say our peace." he said.

Hurst asked what the Board meant by saying Trump has coarsened the national dialog.

"Did you ever think you would hear a presidential candidate discuss the size of his genitals on a nationally televised debate? We didn't. Did you think you'd ever hear a presidential candidate criticize the gold star parents who'd lost their son in Iraq? We didn't. Did you ever think you'd hear a presidential candidate criticize a war hero, captured and held in North Vietnam? We didn't" Sternberg said.

Hurst also asked how will the paper respond to critics complaining USA Today's coverage is no longer bias in the presidential election coverage.

"To our readers, I can say, our editorial department is completely separate from our news department. Our editorial will not in any way affect our news department's coverage." said Sternberg. 

He said the article is by no means an endorsement for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and also said the news staff will continue to cover the election fairly and objectively.


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