×

Variety Endorses Hillary Clinton for President

For the first time in its 111-year history, Variety is endorsing a presidential candidate — Hillary Clinton. While it is commonplace for mass-market newspapers like The New York Times and The Washington Post to endorse candidates, that’s not the case for trade publications. But this year, the editors-in-chief and our publisher, Michelle Sobrino-Stearns, feel strongly that we should buck tradition and take a public stance on this historic election; for the same reason that The Atlantic endorsed Clinton (marking only the third time since its 1857 founding to back a candidate), we didn’t want to sit on the sidelines and come down on the wrong side of history.

There are a number of other motivating factors behind our decision. We believe that Clinton is not only the best candidate for the job, but the only candidate. As many endorsements have noted, she has the experience and temperament necessary to make a truly effective president. In fact, it’s hard to think of any presidential candidate with the depth of knowledge and public-service record she has.

Clinton has been spent her entire life as a social-justice activist, fighting for the rights of women, children, families, the disabled, farmers, veterans, and the LGBTQ community. She has taken on such crucial issues as climate change, racial injustice, and the epidemic of gun violence. She’s not “nasty” — she’s tough and unafraid to smash barriers, whether it was negotiating strict sanctions against Iran, or brokering a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. She’s a global diplomat who has traveled extensively to forge ties with foreign leaders.

Likewise, in the industry we cover, she enjoys widespread support, having cultivated relationships with entertainment figures dating back to her role as first lady. At a time when the industry is enjoying tremendous growth across borders and cultures, she will understand and embrace the importance of international cooperation and the influence of soft power.

“We believe that Clinton is not only the best candidate for the job, but the only candidate.”

She has often talked about the strength of diversity in the American fabric, a topic that only recently has been given meaningful attention among studio chiefs, network heads, and industry organizations. We would expect her to continue this conversation from the bully pulpit of the presidency.

But it is a far different story when it comes to her opponent. Donald Trump lacks the experience, knowledge, and diplomacy to hold public office. His run for the presidency can be viewed as nothing more than a ploy to land another TV deal or launch a new cable channel so he can continue spewing his sexist, racist views. (Variety frequently writes about how sexism and racism run rampant in Hollywood, publishing such stories as a way to keep shining a light on the inequities that oddly still exist in a business that is largely liberal.)

Trump has a long history of disrespect for and objectification of women. Since the surfacing of the now infamous video of his lewd 2005 conversation with Billy Bush, at least a dozen women have gone public with claims that he sexually harassed them.

Sexual harassment is a subject that has made big headlines in the entertainment press, as stories about alleged high-profile abusers like Bill Cosby, former Fox News chief Roger Ailes, and Trump have surfaced. It was nothing less than public harassment and vindictive, belittling misogyny when Trump, after a 2015 GOP debate moderated by Fox News’ Megyn Kelly, said on “CNN Tonight” that Kelly had “blood coming out of her wherever.” Later, on Twitter, he called her a “bimbo.”

As for Trump’s racist views, we’re talking about a man who wants to build a wall to block immigration and expel all Muslims and undocumented immigrants (whom he dubbed “bad hombres”) in our country.

Show business is grappling with its own diversity issues — witness last year’s #OscarsSoWhite controversy, and #BlackLivesMatter. During these challenging times for Hollywood and the world at large, Trump would not be a moral leader who could inspire change.

“Women, young and old, are ready to have someone in the highest office who will protect their rights, champion their causes, and serve as a role model for this and future generations.”

Let’s talk about another disconcerting issue that has cropped up during Trump’s campaign that is essential to the way the media business functions — his treatment of the First Amendment. Trump has intimidated reporters and made multiple threats to sue outlets for stories he despises — a tactic in keeping with his litigious past, but highly unusual for a candidate.

Moreover, he has gone beyond libel threats to hint that he would use the levers of power to go after media companies he dislikes. He suggested that Amazon has antitrust issues. “Oh, do they have problems,” he said. The size of tech giants may be a genuine issue, but Trump’s context was his unhappiness with the way he has been covered by The Washington Post, which is owned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos.

The time has come to elect our first female president. Women, young and old, are ready to have someone in the highest office who will protect their rights, champion their causes, and serve as a role model for this and future generations.

We are proud to endorse Hillary Clinton as president and put an end to a prolonged election circus dominated by an egomaniacal ringmaster. Through it all, she has remained dignified and focused on the issues. We believe she will lead America forward with great vigor and success.

More Biz

  • Herb Dorfman Obit Dead

    Herb Dorfman, Orion Pictures Home Video Executive, Dies at 77

    Herb Dorfman, former Orion Pictures executive and a home video industry veteran, died Feb. 25 of complications from Parkinson’s disease and dementia. He was 77. Dorfman served as head of home entertainment for Orion Pictures from 1987 to late 1996. Orion was a prosperous independent studio in those days that turned out a steady stream [...]

  • Editorial use only. Hand Out HANDOUT

    Big Hit, Home to BTS, Eyes $5B Valuation in IPO Bid; Will Coronavirus Stall the Plan?

    South Korea’s Big Hit Entertainment, home to global K-pop sensations BTS, is moving toward an IPO and recently selected underwriters. Sources in the investment banking industry say JP Morgan, NH Investment & Securities, and Korea Investment & Securities were chosen as main managers early this week, while Mirae Asset Daewoo is also on board as a joint manager. [...]

  • Bob Chapek

    What Disney's Theme Parks Reveal About New CEO Bob Chapek

    Theme parks and resorts aren’t likely top of mind for the industry set when they think of Disney. But in light of the recent (and very swift) appointment of parks and consumer products head Bob Chapek to succeed Bob Iger as Disney CEO, Chapek’s recent interviews at the parks offer a few insights about the [...]

  • Justin Dini Josh Line

    ViacomCBS Promotes Josh Line and Justin Dini in Communications and Marketing

    ViacomCBS has named Comedy Central veteran Josh Line to serve as executive VP and chief brand officer for the newly enlarged company. Line will oversee all marketing strategies for the company with an emphasis on synergy efforts across a collection of brands that range from MTV, Nickelodeon, BET and Comedy Central to Paramount Pictures, CBS [...]

  • Lizzo Grammys performance

    Lizzo Hit With Copyright Suit Over 'Truth Hurts'

    Three songwriters filed a countersuit against Lizzo in federal court on Friday, alleging that they have been denied proper credit for writing her breakout hit, “Truth Hurts.” Lizzo sued the songwriters — brothers Justin and Jeremiah Raisen, as well as Justin “Yves” Rothman — last October, seeking a determination that they did not deserve credit [...]

  • Marcie Allen

    Marcie Allen Confirms She’s in Talks to Sell MAC Presents

    Marcie Allen, founder and owner of the music experiential agency MAC Presents, confirmed to Variety that she is in talks to sell the company, which she launched in 2004. Over the years the agency has engineered partnerships between major artists and brands, including the Rolling Stones, Billy Joel, Keith Urban, Green Day, John Mayer and [...]

  • media stocks - wall-street

    Stock Markets Log Historic Losses Amid Coronavirus Selloff

    U.S. corporate giants are the teeth of another wild ride on Wall Street as investors brace for the end of a week of historic losses for the Dow and other major indices. The Dow was down 357 points, or 1.3%, at the close of trading Friday, after falling more than 1,000 points early on in [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content