And the endorsement goes to…

No one.

We will not endorse any candidate for the March 4 primary.

It has long been a tradition for newspapers to choose a candidate to publicly support. It gives readers a chance to learn more about the candidates. Longtime readers of a certain paper would also use the endorsements as a way to determine their own vote. If they normally disagree with the editorial board, they now know who not to vote for.

But that’s not the case here. We’re not a national newspaper with a permanent editorial board. We are student journalists whose jobs change every semester. You aren’t a readership looking for some guidance on which way to vote. You are college students trying to make up your own minds. That’s the way it should be.

As students, we don’t feel comfortable or qualified telling you who to support. In the past, we have made endorsements on the local level, such as City Council and the Undergraduate Student Senate. Those two elections have such a direct impact on your lives that we would be neglecting our responsibility to inform you if we didn’t throw our two cents in.

This isn’t an election that you can’t learn more about by going to other media outlets. This is a national election. You can go to any news Web site and find out more about the candidates. The Washington Post site even offers a quiz based on candidates’ past speeches to help match you with the candidate you best align with.

John McCain, Mike Huckabee, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton each have their own Web sites. While obviously biased, they also offer an explanation of their platforms and campaign promises. You can read about who they are, what they’ve done before and what they hope to accomplish.

Considering how important Ohio has been in past presidential elections, they are going to focus on what they can do for this state. We’ve had a rocky past couple of decades. The economy is a constant source of problems. The cost of education certainly isn’t falling, and many of those who do earn a higher education degree move out of the state. We need a president who can help turn this situation around.

We realize many of you probably weren’t going to base your vote on who we would support. We felt it necessary to offer this explanation because it is something most newspapers do. For the sake of transparency, some of our board members haven’t fully decided for themselves. How can we tell you who to vote for when we don’t even know for sure?

The primary is next week. Read/watch/listen to the news, go hear the candidates speak if you get the chance and make an informed decision. Your vote counts. Make sure it’s the best one for you.

The above editorial is a consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board.