The Des Moines Register announced in an editorial that it would back Mitt Romney for president in 2012.
The Register's decision comes as President Obama picked up endorsements from The Miami Herald, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the New York Times, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the Toledo Blade and the Youngstown Vindicator. The Quad-City Times endorsed Romney.
The Register asked readers to give Romney "a chance to correct the nation’s fiscal course and to implode the partisan gridlock that has shackled Washington and the rest of America."
The Register, Iowa's largest newspaper, backed President Obama in 2008, and had not endorsed a Republican candidate since Richard Nixon in 1972. The paper's endorsement, posted on its web site Saturday and appearing in its print editions Sunday, says in part:
"There is not a lot of difference between the two candidates’ short-term economic plans, as both are heavy on a promise of tax cuts for the middle class but short on details. Romney’s plan, however, goes beyond helping the middle class with tax breaks.
"Throughout the campaign, he has expressed faith in the private sector to fuel a more robust economic recovery if it has more confidence that the federal government will not be an obstacle. Romney has a strategy for job growth through tax and regulatory relief for small businesses, encouraging all forms of domestic energy production, education that prepares graduates with job skills, expanding foreign trade and reducing the burden of federal deficits."