Donald Trump gets his first endorsement by a major US newspaper

Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial cites Republican's policies on tax, gun rights

donald trump

Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally on Sunday in Naples, Florida | Photo: PA Images

As his rival continues to increase her lead in polls, Donald Trump received some rare good news yesterday with  his first endorsement by a major US newspaper.

The backing came from the Las Vegas Review-Journal in Nevada, one of the key battleground states in the race to the White House.

The paper, which was bought last year by Republican billionaire donor Sheldon Adelson, described Mr Trump as a flawed but preferable candidate to Hillary Clinton.

"History tells us that agents for reform often generate fear and alarm among those intent on preserving their cushy sinecures," the endorsement said.

"It’s hardly a shock, then, that the 2016 campaign has produced a barrage of unceasing vitriol directed toward Mr Trump. But let us not be distracted by the social media sideshows and carnival clatter."

The editorial cited the Republican's support for lower taxes, conservative US Supreme Court nominees and embrace of gun rights, while expressing concern that a Clinton administration would "indulge the worst instincts of the authoritarian left".

"Yes, Mr Trump’s impulsiveness and overheated rhetoric alienate many voters," it said.

"He has trouble dealing with critics and would be wise to discover the power of humility.

"But neither candidate will ever be called to the dais to accept an award for moral probity and character.

"And we are already distressingly familiar with the Clinton way, which involves turning public service into an orgy of influence peddling and entitlement designed to line their own pockets — precisely what a disgruntled electorate now rises up to protest."

The Las Vegas Review-Journal is the largest newspaper in Nevada, with a circulation of almost 200,000.

Its endorsement, just over two weeks ahead of the presidential election, comes amid falling support for the Republican following sexual assault allegations by a number of women. 

An ABC News tracking poll released yesterday showed Mrs Clinton leading Mr Trump by 12 points: 50% to 38% among likely voters.