The newspaper considered the most respected in New Hampshire endorsed New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie for the Republican presidential nomination in a top-of-the-front-page weekend editorial.
Union Leader Publisher Joseph McQuaid cited Christie's record as U.S. attorney for and governor of New Jersey, while calling him a "solid, pro-life conservative who has managed to govern in liberal New Jersey, face down the big public unions, and win a second term."
In the past two GOP presidential primaries, the Union Leader endorsed Newt Gingrich (lost) and John McCain (won).
Christie has run near the back of the pack in recent New Hampshire polls -- finishing seventh and ninth, respectively -- with Donald Trump out front.
The governor has pretty much staked his candidacy on the first-in-the-nation primary state.
"Mon will be my 49th day in NH," Christie tweeted Saturday night. "I'll keep working hard to earn the trust of voters. Thx 4 the confidence."
"Gov. Christie is right for these dangerous times. He has prosecuted terrorists and dealt admirably with major disasters," McQuaid wrote in the editorial, posted online Saturday night. "But the one reason he may be best-suited to lead during these times is because he tells it like it is and isn't shy about it.
"Gov. Chris Christie is exactly the conservative Republican needed to take the fight to Hillary Clinton next fall and then get about the serious business of defending us and rebuilding our economy," the publisher wrote under the headline “For Our Safety, For Our Future.”
“We don’t need another fast-talking, well-meaning freshman U.S. senator trying to run the government,” he added.
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