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Urban Legend true: Trib endorsed Obama

Published October 24, 2012 11:54 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

It's a badge of honor to be the subject or an urban legend, right?

The Salt Lake Tribune has joined that group now.

After The Tribune's endorsement of President Barack Obama for a second term went viral, apparently so did emails touting or questioning the backing of the Salt Lake City newspaper for the president, and people flocked to the urban legend debunking site of Snopes.com to find out if it was true.

According to the site's editors, "Despite the significant ties Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has to Utah's Salt Lake City — including his prominent membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (which is headquartered in that city), and his work as president and CEO of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the 2002 Winter Olympics — it came as a surprise to many people that The Salt Lake Tribune, the highest-circulation daily newspaper in Utah, endorsed his opponent, Barack Obama."

The go-to site for checking out dubious claims labeled this one as true since The Tribune had posted its endorsement of Obama last Friday online, a posting, by the way, that flooded the Trib's website and nearly logged an all-time high in unique visitors.

While The Tribune's editorial page is often thought of in Utah as leaning left, the paper has endorsed several Republican candidates this time around, including Sen. Orrin Hatch, Rep. Rob Bishop and Gov. Gary Herbert.

Snopes also points out the key thing that some outsiders may not be aware of concerning the two Salt Lake City daily papers and The Tribune's history with Obama.

"Those who followed the 2008 presidential campaign closely might not have found The Salt Lake Tribune's endorsement of barack Obama in 2012 too much of a surprise, as that newspaper endorsed him in the 2008 election as well. (Contrary to common misbelief, the Deseret News, not the Tribune, is the Salt Lake City newspaper that is owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.)

— Thomas Burr@Thomaswburr