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Explaining Edwards

The biggest news during The Fix's 10-day sojourn to South America came late Friday when former senator John Edwards (N.C.) admitted an extramarital affair with a former campaign videographer named Rielle Hunter.

While rumors regarding Edwards's personal life had been swirling among the chattering class for the better part of the last three years, it was a recent report in the National Enquirer, which caught Edwards at a Los Angeles hotel with Hunter, that triggered the revelation.

So, what does it mean for Edwards's political career -- both short and long term -- and, perhaps more importantly, what does the way the story was covered (or not covered) reveal about the nature of the news media?

Let's tackle the first question first since it's the easier one to answer.

Edwards's political career was likely at an end following a second straight loss in the presidential primaries. Edwards was never particularly comfortable in the Senate -- he stayed just six years -- and a re-run bid was never likely. There had been some talk that Edwards might consider a run for governor down the line but given some of the more liberal positions he adopted during his two national bids, he would be hard pressed to win in a conservative-minded state like North Carolina.

What was a possibility pre-affair was a spot in Obama's cabinet or some sort of unofficial official role as poverty czar or something along those lines. Some people had even mentioned Edwards as a potential attorney general under a President Obama. That talk is over now.

The most likely future for Edwards will be an extended period in private life followed by a re-emergence in five or ten years as a public figure -- perhaps re-assuming his role as a national spokesman on poverty issues.

Edwards' future path could be similar to the journey taken by Gary Hart, another youthful senator who made two serious runs for president and saw his career waylaid by an extramarital affair. Hart disappeared from politics for more than a decade but has, of late, begun to play a more prominent role within the party. A similar fate may well be the best Edwards can hope for.

Now, onto the second question: Why, despite a published report about a secret meeting between Edwards and a woman long rumored to be his mistress, did the mainstream news media not report on the story?

We don't presume to speak for the entirety of the mainstream media and several people far smarter than The Fix have already sounded off about the issue. (The Post's Howard Kurtz takes it on in his Media Notes column today.)

But, we can tell the Fix community why we stayed away from it.

The first and most important point was that we could not independently confirm the report by the Enquirer. After the piece alleging this secret meeting ran in the Enquirer, we called around to a variety of Democratic sources -- those close to Edwards and those not so close to him -- to try and verify the report. What we found was a lack of specifics; no one denied the story out right but no one would confirm the report either.

The lack of any specific confirmation or repudiation left us -- and our editors -- in something of a quandary. Edwards, as he had long done, was denying the Enquirer report and we had no one aside from the tabloid willing to push back.

Why did we not simply note the existence of the story while offering the caveats about our own inability to confirm it? While we regularly cite the good work of other reporters on the Fix -- heck we have a whole category devoted to it -- the Edwards story struck us as a horse of a different color.

Citing an unconfirmed report about who will keynote the Republican National Convention (our money is on Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal) is very different than publishing an unconfirmed report about a two-time candidate for president engaging in an extramarital affair.

All stories are not created equal in terms of how we treat them on this blog; when a story is of an intimately personal nature, we tend to err on the side of caution, which is why you didn't see anything on Edwards in this blog until the former North Carolina senator admitted the affair last Friday night.

So, that's why we did what we did. Did we make the right call? Why or why not? And, if you were in our place, how would you have handled the Edwards affair story?

By Chris Cillizza  |  August 11, 2008; 12:22 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Comments

Why all the fuss? Edwards is right now not rubnnig for public office. I agree his actions are unforgivable, they are not going to hurt our country. Obama, however, is running for president and he has been much too friendly with Communism to suite me and a lot of other people. For that reason I just don't trust him. And because we aren't entirely sure where he stands he scares me. I just don't like people who try to hide the truth when they want to be president. We certainly know that John McCain is an AMERICAN. He has proven it. John McCain will protect this country. I am not so sure about Obama. McCain in 2008!!!

Posted by: ldt1930 | August 18, 2008 6:20 PM | Report abuse

MEDIA STUPIDITY MAY CAUSE ANOTHER 9/11

Mr. Cillizza:

You mentioned Gary Hart in your column while clearly arguing that John Edwards should stay out of public life for five to 10 years.

Now, think about what you just wrote. You implied strongly that Hart SHOULD have been out of public life for having an affair (while being separated from his wife for several years; wasn't he living with a certain Washington Post reporter?)

In any case, the American public suffered because Hart was thrown out of public life. When he re-entered, he was the co-chair of a national security commission that recommended all sorts of steps that were accepted by Bill Clinton, but then rejected by President Cheney. My recollection is that Cheney told Hart to stick it up his --- and then appointed himself the head of a commission that never met.

The bottom line is that Hart had the intelligence, foresight, and experience to take the action that our nitwit president did not.

In other words, if Hart had been the president or a higher-profile politician, Sept. 11 might NEVER have happened.

Yet, you idiots in the media continue to favor IDIOTIC tests for leadership. With Edwards gone, who knows what kinds of insights we'll lose.

GROW UP.

ZWrite

Posted by: zwrite | August 12, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

I don't like the following scenario. The "chattering classes" (media, especially) basically know there is an issue there for Edwards, but can't pin it down. Edwards is then (take your pick) nominated to be president; nominated to be vice president; used prominently in the Democratic convention; named ahead of time as the likely attorney general. Then, when it is too late to replace him, suddenly all the details come out. The public doesn't want him any more, but didn't know about the issue ahead of time and now is trapped into a lack of options. The press, which tries to serve the public, knew all along but didn't say anything. It just doesn't seem to me to serve the interests of our democracy or the county. I'm not sure what the answer was. But we certainly got lucky on the timeing in this case.

It reminds me of the timing of the Bob Packwood reporting, which came days too late to influence his re-election.

Posted by: Fairfax Voter | August 12, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

"DDAWD and the Fix are tight. Maybe one and the same. Fix uses excerpts of yours. For some one so biased no wonder. NoObama no to a cult!"

The one time the Fix used an excerpt of mine was for an endorsement of Bobby Jindal.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 12, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Wrong call, Chris. Keeping up the gatekeeper mentality--especially for something like the Fix--may leave your standards intact, but lose you your

readers. It's inexcusable that an event that shattered Edwards's cabinet prospects months ago wasn't discussed.

Posted by: Greg | August 12, 2008 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Guess all are not early birds?

Posted by: Jesus | August 12, 2008 5:09 AM | Report abuse

Right on wnderer, "Latinos for Nobama" Obama has told us to vote for him but not the truth. Will this story come to late to matter during this election just like Edwards! Chris will you explain your silence on this one now or wait to you have to?

Posted by: Jesus | August 12, 2008 4:56 AM | Report abuse

DDawd and others like him are the reason Obama will not be elected. You can talk about anything with them. But Obama can never do any wrong. Discrimination is wrong DDawd even when Obama is guilty of it. And yes Hispanics are people also not just votes.

Posted by: Wanderer | August 12, 2008 4:37 AM | Report abuse

DDAWD and the Fix are tight. Maybe one and the same. Fix uses excerpts of yours. For some one so biased no wonder. NoObama no to a cult!

Posted by: Myfoot | August 12, 2008 4:27 AM | Report abuse

"I read this boards enough to know guys like you Broadway and DDawd are clearly biased. Who is your guy again... You know I don't have to say his name. Starts with an O..."

And ends in bama. I'm biased about a lot of things. I'm biased towards wearing shoes instead of walking around barefoot. I'm biased towards extracting oxygen from the air instead of water. I'm biased towards cooking meat before I eat it. I'm biased towards showering at least once a day. And yes, I'm biased towards Obama. Kind of comes with not being an idiot.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 12, 2008 4:12 AM | Report abuse

It would have affected the primes you foolish human.

Posted by: Martian | August 12, 2008 1:29 AM | Report abuse

Hey I do blame you. Quit using my name to kiss butt. I'm Anonymous not you Anonymous.
And CC is a sell-out who hides stories from us that are relevent to protect Obama!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 12, 2008 1:26 AM | Report abuse

Whoever thinks this affair will affect the election needs to get away from the computer and TV and realize that they are merely soaking every single piece of "news" there is without regard to the reality that most Americans forget what happened in the election saga just under two weeks ago.

Yeah, right, like Edwards will decide NOVEMBER.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 12, 2008 1:23 AM | Report abuse

CC,

I don't blame you. Just also err on the side of caution if the next inevitable affair involves a GOP and you'll be fine.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 12, 2008 1:19 AM | Report abuse

Don't forget people that fix wanted to go on vacation right before this broke. I think those pointing out how fishy it seemed at the time forced him to write this at all. He knew and kept it from us any way you slice it. What else are you hiding fat-boy?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 12, 2008 1:11 AM | Report abuse

The more I think about it Kim is right. Edwards leaving the race back then would have helped Hillary not Obama.

Posted by: Jules | August 12, 2008 1:05 AM | Report abuse

Wow, you go Kim. Fix how do you live with yourself. Oh, I forgot all that money you get selling out. Kindle? or whatever is the latest. You should sell ad space on your huge head. An Obama tatoo on that massive forehead of yours would suit you both.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 12, 2008 1:00 AM | Report abuse

Your protecting Obama on this Hispanic racism thing and want us to justify your past choice not to run a story that would have directly affected this election on Edwards. A year, really? You are a joke write them and let us decide before not after it makes little diffrence... For those that say why bother now are right to some extent. But they have selective memories. Edwards was in the running back when you were sitting your fat butt on this. Again no need to explain that you were forced to act like a unbiased reporter now.

Posted by: Kim Novak | August 12, 2008 12:53 AM | Report abuse

MSM covered for Edwards, but they protect Obama to the point that we no longer trust them.

Vote NO to the Media in November! Vote for McCain.

Posted by: DEM now IND | August 12, 2008 12:13 AM | Report abuse

No one could possibly vote for a Republican anymore...
Lets see, Obama, or write in Buchanon?

Posted by: Blueskies | August 11, 2008 11:52 PM | Report abuse

Have any of the Washington Post readers actually gone to Obama's website and read about all the EXPENSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS OBAMA IS PROPOSING? Where does Obama expect to get all this money?

What a joke.

Seriously folks, Obama wants MASSIVE INCREASES IN SPENDING WHICH WILL MEAN MASSIVE TAX INCREASES AND MASSIVE INCREASES IN AFFIRMATIVE ACTION PROGRAMS.

Obama is proposing that we plunge this nation into a MASSIVE RECESSION COMPLETE WITH STAG-FLATION.

The younger generation probably does not understand what STAG-FLATION is - which explains why the younger people are going for Obama in such numbers.


HOWEVER I REMEMBER THE STAG-FLATION, THE HORRIBLE ECONOMIC MESS THAT MASSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS CAUSE AND THE HIGH TAXES THAT HURT EVERYONE, EVEN THE PEOPLE WHO THE MASSIVE PROGRAMS ARE INTENED TO HELP.

OK

It is true, Obama has never run anything in his life, no Business, no Office, no law firm, no Investmant Office NOTHING - Obama's only economic experience is BUYING COCAINE FROM SOMEONE. Seriously how in the world could anyone trust Obama with a budget ???


.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: "It Can't Happen Here" - Can It? | August 11, 2008 11:31 PM | Report abuse

You have to know that when a very big and popular influential figure that was a Democrat candidate for the presidency and still for the vice presidency was overlooked by the media in this scandal that potentially goes even deeper than an affair, something is very wrong. I guess since the Enquirer trumped the main stream media, those that want to know the truth will look to them for the real news and the truth here..

Posted by: Mike | August 11, 2008 10:34 PM | Report abuse

If he'd gotten the nomination, this would've been an important story. As it is, it's really just titillation. And though that guy who said Hillary would've benefitted from the story coming out earlier is probably right, it's moot at this point. Anyway, with a stupid name like "Rielle," it's pretty easy to guess what kind of thing she'd have going on with a guy like John Edwards.

Posted by: Budikavlan | August 11, 2008 10:00 PM | Report abuse

I read this boards enough to know guys like you Broadway and DDawd are clearly biased. Who is your guy again... You know I don't have to say his name. Starts with an O...

Posted by: Wanderer | August 11, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Broadway your the guy argued with that guy or girl poster that if Obama is discriminating against Hispanics he has his reason. And it is not wrong in the slightest for him to do so if I recall.

Posted by: Wanderer | August 11, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Wanderer, no offense but you are behind the curb on this one. The poster pedaling that junk you cited couldn't back it up and was totally discredited. Sadly, he carpeted-posted that bilge until his keyboard jammed. His favorite ploy was to paste in some bogus letter to some official (not BO) complaining about some personal matter and then blame BO. BO had nothing to do with his gripe, which as I understood involved Hormel canned ham. Look, BO started out as a community organizer fighting aginst bias and his whole campaign has faced an uphill battle against prejudice (read the Atlantic piece (as summarized in politico.com) about what he has put up with). So he's the last person who would put up with that. Stay thirsty, my friend...

Posted by: Broadawy Joe | August 11, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Rumors? What about direct evidence posted in the past on your own blog Chris. Concerning Obama's racism towards Hispanics. If someone would have told Edwards not to run due to his unreported affair, what about Obama. It seems you will play stupid until a rag like the National Enquirer, force you to write about Obama and this racism.

Posted by: Wanderer | August 11, 2008 9:08 PM | Report abuse

Broadway Joe:

I believe you have misread my column, the one entitled, "Edwards Sex Scandal Could Be Pivotal '08 Moment." It's not about Hillary in the end, it's about Gore. Please give it another read and you'll see. Thanks.

BUT WILL THE ELECTION EVEN MATTER? Not when government-supported "Vigilante Justice" Squads are gang-stalking and harassing American citizens outside the bounds of the law:

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/get-political-vic-livingston-opinion-expose-state-supported-vigilante-squads-doing-domestic-terrorism

Posted by: scrivener | August 11, 2008 8:59 PM | Report abuse

Joshua why don't they do the same for Obama and that guy Obama slept with during his marriage...

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Edwards used the same good judgement telling us to vote for Obama. Takes one to know one as far as power corrupted jerks go.

Posted by: Myfoot | August 11, 2008 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Why is it the National Enquirer is consistently scooping the mainstream media on these political stories. I doubt that NE knows something the MSM doesn't -- because after NE breaks the story, the MSM comes in, piggy-backing on the NE scoop. The media also ends up admitting, well, we knew all of that anyway, we just didn't tell. Why? If you are a newspaper, you should publish the news, not withhold it. The alternative media -- NE, the blogs, Huffington, Slate, etc. -- are running circles around the corporate media on this stuff.

Posted by: Broadway Joe | August 11, 2008 8:52 PM | Report abuse

The big deal is the long time cover up of both Edwards and the news media. It could have made a BIG difference in Hillary's outcome and there's still the possibility of campaign funds used. There's also the suspicious involvement of others and could the media beholding back other information about Obama and his host of unsavory friends including Rezko. Can you trust the media at this point? The answer is NO.

Posted by: Mike | August 11, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Why doesn't the Post tell us about McCain's sexual misconduct while in the military? about his harrassment of women? about his cheating on his second wife with a young lobbyist? about his lies in his book about when he got divorced and when he was having sex with other women while married? about his rape jokes? about the rumors of his attempted assaults? about his taking a marriage license while still married -- a crime? about his 3 years of making Communist prop. for Russia's ally NV? about his $500 shoes and 9 homes and $150,000 a month credit card bills? Oh, because the Post is part of McCain's base. Just ask Dana, Will, Fred, Kraut, Broder (when he gets back from another GOP-paid for cruise), Woodward, et al.

Posted by: Joshua Gen Against McSleaze | August 11, 2008 8:36 PM | Report abuse

John Edwards joins a long list of other prominent politicans who only after being caught say they are sorry for their misbehavior. Yet the talk of Edwards' political career being over with him likely not giving a speech at the Democratic convention contrasts with Bill Clinton, who had far more affairs, who will be speaking at the convention and is still hoping to become co-president in 2013.

Why is Edwards being banished to the political wilderness for a single affair, yet Clinton is still given such prominence?
Another double standard by the media.

Posted by: Independent | August 11, 2008 8:34 PM | Report abuse

scrivener, send us your mailing address so we can send you the Joshua Green Atlantic piece that is coming out, totally exposing the swirl of entitlement, anger, envy, hate, and (don't laugh) even sadness that was the HRC campaign. We will send Harriet Christian a copy, too.

Politico.com has provided a preview of the piece, and it appears to be a blockbuster, maybe a Pulitzer, seriously.
After reading it, no one can make a principled argument that HRC's failure was anything but the result of self-inflicted wounds. As will be described in the Atlantic, HRCland was "The Devil Wears Prada" squared. The venom we're used to seeing from the Hilliarians on cable apparently was directed at each other within the HRC camp. And it confirms that painting BO as a "multiculturalist" (a hate group code word) was a central goal of the campaign.
Great moment: HRC is on a conference call with her multi-million dollar staff floating ideas and such but getting no response from staff, just silence. She ends the call (paraphrasing) "Well I really enjoyed talking to myself" and hung up on the staff. It also confirms they were clueless as to how the primaries and caucuses work, not having done the tough homework BO did. They admitted they botched Iowa so badly they were prepared to write it off. And it says the Hillarians expected Rev. Wright would be a game-ender for BO (game, set, match).
From the Green piece (via Politico):
“The anger and toxic obsessions overwhelmed even the most reserved Beltway wise men,” Green writes. “[H]er advisers couldn’t execute strategy; they routinely attacked and undermined each other, and Clinton never forced a resolution. ... [S]he never behaved like a chief executive, and her own staff proved to be her Achilles’ heel." "Toxic obsessions"? Wow. Stay thirsty, my friends...

Posted by: Broadway Joe | August 11, 2008 8:14 PM | Report abuse

Question for the moderator: Is there a reason you haven't posted my messages? I'm coherent, not profane, and on-topic. You just don't like my criticism of the paper? What?
melindanbates@gmail.com

Posted by: Bajagirl | August 11, 2008 8:10 PM | Report abuse

Have any of the Washington Post readers actually gone to Obama's website and read about all the EXPENSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS OBAMA IS PROPOSING? Where does Obama expect to get all this money?

What a joke.

Seriously folks, Obama wants MASSIVE INCREASES IN SPENDING WHICH WILL MEAN MASSIVE TAX INCREASES AND MASSIVE INCREASES IN AFFIRMATIVE ACTION PROGRAMS.

Obama is proposing that we plunge this nation into a MASSIVE RECESSION COMPLETE WITH STAG-FLATION.

The younger generation probably does not understand what STAG-FLATION is - which explains why the younger people are going for Obama in such numbers.


HOWEVER I REMEMBER THE STAG-FLATION, THE HORRIBLE ECONOMIC MESS THAT MASSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS CAUSE AND THE HIGH TAXES THAT HURT EVERYONE, EVEN THE PEOPLE WHO THE MASSIVE PROGRAMS ARE INTENED TO HELP.

OK

It is true, Obama has never run anything in his life, no Business, no Office, no law firm, no Investmant Office NOTHING - Obama's only economic experience is BUYING COCAINE FROM SOMEONE. Seriously how in the world could anyone trust Obama with a budget ???


.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Any chance this Georgia thing is a way for McCain to show his foreign policy chops while Obama basks and lazes?

Posted by: Wag the Dog | August 11, 2008 6:56 PM | Report abuse

what is there to explain... the Dingos will eat that baby if you let them.

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | August 11, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

Man you guys are the best on hypocrisy. For all the hard criticism you level at politicians of all stripes, when it comes time to say you guys screwed irrespective of the reason, you're as tongue tied as the pols. What a self justifying rationale for why you chose to keep this story out of the press. It's really difficult for the normal folks out there to see why this wasn't reported on, other than outright favoritism either to the person, a desire not to stand out among one's peers at picking up a valid but difficult story or just downright laziness to pursue the details needed to publish the story. As to whether or not JE's infidelity is relevant or irrelevant to voters is a decision for voters to make, not for reporters to decide for them.

Posted by: Tango | August 11, 2008 6:33 PM | Report abuse

Ok, conversation over.

Liberalism is a mental disorder.

Posted by: SgtFun | August 11, 2008 6:32 PM | Report abuse

"That's funny, so you’re saying John Kerry & the aforementioned JOHN EDWARDS would have been a better choice? Nice character call, good choice."

Of course. It's not even close.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Of course. 9/11 frightened the nation into invading Iraq as well as re-electing Bush. 9/11 had a heck of a lot to do with both.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 6:20 PM

That's funny, so you’re saying John Kerry & the aforementioned JOHN EDWARDS would have been a better choice? Nice character call, good choice.

Posted by: SgtFun | August 11, 2008 6:25 PM | Report abuse

"Don't forget about that pesky 9/11 attack that happened under GWB... I'm sure that has nothing to do with the overall American economy"

Of course. 9/11 frightened the nation into invading Iraq as well as re-electing Bush. 9/11 had a heck of a lot to do with both.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Yes. This is a trash story, and you were right not to give it any time of day.

Posted by: atsherwi | August 11, 2008 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Who knows was would have happened under Clinton, but many of Bush's policies are directly responsible for housing market and oil price problems.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 6:14 PM

Don't forget about that pesky 9/11 attack that happened under GWB... I'm sure that has nothing to do with the overall American economy


Posted by: Arron | August 11, 2008 6:17 PM | Report abuse

"It is funny though that you would blame GWB for a crashing housing market and soaring gas prices… Do you not think this could have happened under your dream boat president Bill Clinton? If you don’t you’re an idiot."

Well, let's see. You've got massive deregulation of banking under Bush. Think that might have contributed? Destabilization of the Middle East under Bush. I wonder if that affects gas prices. What about inflationary fiscal practice? (Inflation makes the price of EVERYTHING go up)

Who knows was would have happened under Clinton, but many of Bush's policies are directly responsible for housing market and oil price problems.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 6:14 PM | Report abuse

I completely agree

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 5:44 PM

Did didn't say anything about GWB. I think he did a poor job managing the war.

It is funny though that you would blame GWB for a crashing housing market and soaring gas prices… Do you not think this could have happened under your dream boat president Bill Clinton? If you don’t you’re an idiot.

Posted by: SgtFun | August 11, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Slick Wily doesn't deserve credit for the internet boom. He was lucky that economy did well under no supervision by his administration. If not, all he'd have is an impeachment an a hard to remove stain from Monica’s little black dress…

Posted by: JohnW | August 11, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

sgtfun......It would really have helped if the idiot who is now our President wouldn't have lied about WMD just to secure more oil (greed), money (greed), and revenge for his daddy would have saved 4000 American soldiers lives, a broke economy, terrible reputation, etc!

I completely agree

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

The younger generation probably does not understand what STAG-FLATION is - which explains why the younger people are going for Obama in such numbers."

A period of high inflation combined with job loss. Kind of like what's happening now.
___________________________________________I agree DDWAD...it was the older bafoons that voted because GWB scared the h$ll out of them with the gay marriage, Iraq war & red/orange alerts & national security. Not once did these older voters think about the rising costs of healthcare, broken social security issues, rising economical crisis, etc. All they could do was pass judgement on folks' character (the same way they are doing with Edwards and others). They weren't smart enough to vote for the issues. Therefore is has become evident that it's going to take younger, more smarter & intelligent voters to change the complete mess that these bafoons have put us all in!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

As far as Bill Clinton, well its pretty much objective that he was a good president, i.e. the economy was good and growing, there were now wars, etc... etc... He even managed to pay the national debt down.

Posted by: DCDave | August 11, 2008 5:30 PM

He could have capture Osama Bin Laden before 3000 American's died in New York!!!!!!!!

But that would be "war mongering” and mean.

“Make love, not war”


Posted by: SgtFun | August 11, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse

HA!!! Are you serious?

Clinton had a job performance number in the mid fifties when he left office, it's climbed a bit since then, it's 64% last I checked on pollingreport.com
The Bungler is a solid 29% that probably wont move until he dies (we like our presidents better once they die, look at Ronnie Raygun. I think it's the cultural taboo about speaking ill of the dead combined with the certainty that they can't screw things up again).
That said, yeah, if Clinton could run, he'd win without a doubt. He's a white guy, he's a democrat and after the last 8 years we've discovered having a president who is a horn dog is not nearly as bad as having one who is an idiot.

Posted by: dijetlo | August 11, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

EXTRA-LEGAL TARGETING OF AMERICAN CITIZENS
BY GOV'T-SUPPORTED 'VIGILANTE JUSTICE'
SQUADS WHO GANG-STALK AND TERRORIZE:
YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK?

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/get-political-vic-livingston-opinion-expose-state-supported-vigilante-squads-doing-domestic-terrorism

Posted by: scrivener | August 11, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

You can tell how dire the Republicans are when they are willing to use a 37 year old Indian-American named Piyush Jindal"...

Posted by: Obama-Junkie | August 11, 2008 5:26 PM

WOW! Another racist remark from an Obama supporter... How refreshing.

___________________________________________

Aron.....Yo dude, Why do you automatically assume that this person is an Obama supporter?

Another sterotype comment from a McCain supporter? Boy, you guys keep your hands in the gender, race, and religion candy jar?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

"The younger generation probably does not understand what STAG-FLATION is - which explains why the younger people are going for Obama in such numbers."

A period of high inflation combined with job loss. Kind of like what's happening now.

The younger people actually tried to keep Bush out of the White House. The youngest group was the only group favoring Kerry over Bush.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

"You can tell how dire the Republicans are when they are willing to use a 37 year old Indian-American named Piyush Jindal"...

Posted by: Obama-Junkie | August 11, 2008 5:26 PM

WOW! Another racist remark from an Obama supporter... How refreshing.

Posted by: Arron | August 11, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

No one really knows what happens in a couples marriage, lots of couples hit a rough patch and stay together, lots don't. Its the Edward's business not ours, i.e. they worked it out, his wife knew about it, etc...

Also Marriage means different things to different folks, I can understand Repugs being all twisted up about this, because of their narrow minded and puritanical world view, but not democrats.

As far as Bill Clinton, well its pretty much objective that he was a good president, i.e. the economy was good and growing, there were now wars, etc... etc... He even managed to pay the national debt down.

Posted by: DCDave | August 11, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Say what?! Piyush Jindal is giving the keynote speech at the Republican National Convention?! WOW!

You can tell how dire the Republicans are when they are willing to use a 37 year old Indian-American named Piyush Jindal to deliver the keynote speech to attempt to
offset the Obama factor!

I was wondering why the GOP was using Jindal to prop-up media interest in McCain's VEEP choice. I see now that Jindal was promised an important role at the convention because he had no chance of being McCain's VEEP.

Posted by: Obama-Junkie | August 11, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

"John McCain is a Republican Presidential candidate just one very competitive election away from the white house. He is an old, bumbling with a long and mediocre legislative career in the U.S. Senate with a one-dimensional mind fixated on militery matters."

Posted by: MikeD | August 11, 2008 5:01 PM

John McCain has a very distinguished legislative career which includes substantial bi-partisan legislation. Unlike Obama, McCain actually worked with those of other political views. Obama just keeps talking about how he will unite while his voting record shows he liberal to the core.

Re John McCain "fixation" with military matters, check the constitution about the duties of the commander in chief. If says nothing about public housing, subsidizing welfare queens and benefits to illegal aliens. There is some discussion however about national security.

Posted by: wiseman4 | August 11, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Have any of the Washington Post readers actually gone to Obama's website and read about all the EXPENSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS OBAMA IS PROPOSING? Where does Obama expect to get all this money?

What a joke.

Seriously folks, Obama is proposing that we plunge this nation into a MASSIVE RECESSION COMPLETE WITH STAG-FLATION.

The younger generation probably does not understand what STAG-FLATION is - which explains why the younger people are going for Obama in such numbers.


HOWEVER I REMEMBER THE STAG-FLATION, THE HORRIBLE ECONOMIC MESS THAT MASSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS CAUSE AND THE HIGH TAXES THAT HURT EVERYONE, EVEN THE PEOPLE WHO THE MASSIVE PROGRAMS ARE INTENED TO HELP.

OK

It is true, Obama has never run anything in his life, no Business, no Office, no law firm, no Investmant Office NOTHING - Obama's only economic experience is BUYING COCAINE FROM SOMEONE. Seriously how in the world could anyone trust Obama with a budget ???


.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

It’s called CHARACTER- Arguably one of the most important qualities in a politician.

If you lack character, then I could see why it doesn’t matter to you; you have no dignity, fortitude, or intelligence.

This is why examining the CHARACTER of your next president is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT.

Actions speak louder than words. If you have no actions to judge, HOW CAN YOU RELY ON “Just words”, “Just speeches”…

Posted by: MikeD | August 11, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

"John Edwards was a Democratic Vice Presidential candidate a few hundred thousand votes in Ohio and a Kerry health problem away from the white house. He a relatively young, smooth talking politician with a short and undistinguished legislative career in the U.S. Senate. Does this description sound familiar to anyone based on the current party nominees for president?! ..."

Posted by: wiseman4 | August 11, 2008 4:21 PM

John McCain is a Republican Presidential candidate just one very competitive election away from the white house. He is an old, bumbling with a long and mediocre legislative career in the U.S. Senate with a one-dimensional mind fixated on militery matters. He was caught cheating on his sick wife when he was young. He was also caught with his hand in the cookie jar of Lincoln Savings and Loan operated by his pal Charles Keating. Does this description sound fair to you?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

For all those who say infidelity, lying, cheating etc. doesn't matter, the extention of your logic is:

A) you live in a world where you trust no other human.
B) you trust others despite actions that indicate they are completely untrustworthy.

Option A is a sad world indeed and option B = stupidity.

Posted by: wiseman4 | August 11, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Look at Bill Clinton, great President, lousy Husband.

Posted by: DCDave | August 11, 2008 4:17

HA!!! Are you serious?

Posted by: Arron | August 11, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Have any of the Washington Post readers actually gone to Obama's website and read about all the EXPENSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS OBAMA IS PROPOSING? Where does Obama expect to get all this money?

What a joke.

Seriously folks, Obama is proposing that we plunge this nation into a MASSIVE RECESSION COMPLETE WITH STAG-FLATION.

The younger generation probably does not understand what STAG-FLATION is - which explains why the younger people are going for Obama in such numbers.


HOWEVER I REMEMBER THE STAG-FLATION, THE HORRIBLE ECONOMIC MESS THAT MASSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS CAUSE AND THE HIGH TAXES THAT HURT EVERYONE, EVEN THE PEOPLE WHO THE MASSIVE PROGRAMS ARE INTENED TO HELP.

OK

It is true, Obama has never run anything in his life, no Business, no Office, no law firm, no Investmant Office NOTHING - Obama's only economic experience is BUYING COCAINE FROM SOMEONE. Seriously how in the world could anyone trust Obama with a budget ???


.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Does anybody really care about John Edwards? What's the big deal? He's a lawyer/politician, what do you expect?

Edwards sex life doesn't affect the lifestyle of America, nor its national security. The media morons need to get a life. This belongs in People Magazine or some other Hollywood rag not a political forum.

Posted by: Capt. Howard | August 11, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

The interesting part of this are the "political power woman" who "forgive" their husbands. What a crock! They allow the cheating because all they care about is maintaining their power status.

Hilary Clinton has been humiliated by Bill over and over and the only reason she didn't dump him is she wanted to maintain her viability as a candidate. She was rightfully dumped but the electorate. After all who want's a scheming "Doormat in Chief" as their president?

Posted by: wiseman4 | August 11, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Big surprise. Another “slick wily” democrat lawyer cheating on his wife and lying to the American public.

Makes you wonder about the slick democrat lawyer running for office… All talk - inappropriate actions

Posted by: Eric78 | August 11, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

"John Edwards was a Democratic Vice Presidential candidate who was a few hundred thousand votes in Ohio and a Kerry health problem away from the white house. He a relatively young, smooth talking politician with a short and undistinguished legislative career in the U.S. Senate. Does this description sound familiar to anyone based on the current party nominees for president?!"

I'd have been thrilled with Edwards as our VP. I still would have been.

As obvious of a choice it is between Obama and McCain, the choice was a hundred times more obvious between Kerry and Bush. Given how badly we screwed that up, I don't have much faith in people getting it right this time either.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

I have no desire to pile on the two Johns, Edwards and McCain. The parallels between the two situations are striking and close and yet one of the Johns stands poised to assume the responsibilities of the presidency and the associated bully pulpit while the other John has been cast out as thoroughly and ignominiously as can be.

If half of the guardians of virtue who express revulsion at Edwards elect to exercise the virtues of honesty and fairplay, John McCain does not have a prayer.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Lee who wrote:
I think peoples' privacy is sacred and I wouldn't violate it.

No wonder some European countries look at us and laugh at our sanctimonious, hypocritical life-style standards. Affairs happen, and I bet they have happened to some of the comment writers. Yes, they are regrettable, but they aren't the end of the world.People do recover, make amends, move on to live productive lives, and maybe gain some wisdom and maturity from the experience. Maybe if we didn't expect our politicians to hold to these ludicrous standards of sexual behavior that is NO one's business except the man and mate involved, the politician could spend time on real issues like honesty and candor. Because we demand phoney-baloney lifestyle standards of our politicians that aren't congruent with the world at large, we have these foolish politicians prattling on about what's moral, chaste, appropriate. This is none of our business and even if Edwards was the Democratic candidate, it shouldn't make a speck of difference. However, I recognize the American electorate is far more concerned about who a candidates takes to bed than whom they take their money from, what their views on the economy, energy, Iraq, etc. With Americans addicted to the National Enquirer, People Magazine, The Star, it's no wonder everyone is hooked into this story 24-7.This says more about us Americans than it does about Edwards. He isn't the first politician and won't be the last to have had an affair and lied about it to calm the outraged, curious public.

Posted by: Marcee | August 11, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

I have no desire to pile on the two Johns, Edwards and McCain. The parallels between the two situations are striking and close and yet one of the Johns stands poised to assume the responsibilities of the presidency and the associated bully pulpit while the other John has been cast out as thoroughly and ignominiously as can be.

If half of the guardians of virtue who express revulsion at Edwards elect to exercise the virtues of honesty and fairplay, John McCain does not have a prayer.

Posted by: holywoodog | August 11, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

So using DC Dave's logic, world leaders and U.S. legislative leaders are supposed to think they can do business with a president who doesn't even take the vows he's made to the most important person in his life seriously? Clearly trust is the mortar that binds relationships and civil society. DC Dave's society is just broken pile of bricks.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Hang on, let me google up a picture of the...YIKES!!! GOOD LORD!!!!
Fix, what happened to all the hot, hard bodied babes? In the good old days, when a politician was caught spreading the love, at least it was with a hot, hard bodied babe. Jennifer Flowers, Marilyn Monroe, the bit of fluff that sank Gary Harts political career.
Now we get Monica Lewinski, some dude in an airport bathroom and this example of mature American womanhood.
What happening to the hard bodied babes?
Do we need to issue more H1 visas to China and India to meet our quota of neck popping eye candy? I gotta tell you, it breaks my heart when a national politician like John Edwards has to molest a middle ages house frau when their are millions of hot, hard bodied babes in Asia and South America more than willing to be molested by one of Americas senior statesmen.
Now, if domestic production could keep pace with demand, then we'd be OK but apparently our population is overly addicted to potato chips and Rap Artists, leaving a critical HHBB (hot hard bodied babe) shortage. Looking at this picture, one begins to suspect that the shortage has reached crisis level!
I've been to China, they are wall to wall HHBB over there, so the resources exist to remedy this problem. What we have to do is take John McCains suggestion, "drill here, drill there, drill now". He also wants to open up the border to a couple of million hot latinas and some guys who want to paint your house for $50.
But is it news? I'm sure it's not news to Mrs Edwards, and she's probably the only one who has a real stock in Mr Edwards fidelity.

Posted by: dijetlo | August 11, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

"The fact that he applied for and received a marriage license prior to the finalization of his divorce, while it shows him to be rather cruel, clueless, and classless, does not make John McCain a bigamist."

It also doesn't make him a responsible human, let alone a suitable candidate for President.

Posted by: FlownOver | August 11, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Lessee... You won't run a story because you cannot independently corroborate the facts...... yet you and your paper take what this Aministration feeds you and blindly accept that as fact without even the appearance of actually investigating what was said. Not that I'd accept blindly anything that comes out of the National Enquirer, but what's the difference between the Inquirer and this Administration? (Yes, pun very much intended!)

Posted by: PeterPamZ | August 11, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

John Edwards was a Democratic Vice Presidential candidate who was a few hundred thousand votes in Ohio and a Kerry health problem away from the white house. He a relatively young, smooth talking politician with a short and undistinguished legislative career in the U.S. Senate. Does this description sound familiar to anyone based on the current party nominees for president?! In a world with dangerous international conditions and rough economic waters I urge everyone to rethink if you really want to make a wild gamble with your precious vote.

Posted by: wiseman4 | August 11, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

America has to get over this puritanical B.S.

Vote for the best candidate, who cares if they cheated on their wives, or husbands. It doens't say anything about how good they are at their jobs, or in fact much about their character.

Look at Bill Clinton, great President, lousy Husband.

Gary Hart got the boot from the 1988 race, the dems got stuck with Michael Dukakis and as they say the rest is history.

Posted by: DCDave | August 11, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Hi "US", I'm hearing Obama leaked this information to get Edwards out of the race in Jan. Also, another very real and plaguing question I have for you is how any Democrat can consider voting for Obama if, you believe any of the information that is fast becoming available about him? I believe it and just let me say, no Obama, no way and no how?

Thanks again for keeping "US" in the loop! Mary
__________________________________________

I just heard OBAAMA just took a trip to the Moon! Wow! Blame everything on the Black man..racist pigs...

I actually heard that Hillary threw this out to Edwards during the primaries and that's the reason why it took Edwards so long to endorse Obama because the slime horse dung that the Clinton campaign continued to sling threatened to put Edward's business all over the air waves so that's why Edwards waiting until the very end...it wasn't out of respect for the Clintons...nobody does anything for the polarizing Clintons out of respect. They do it because they are afraid of the Clintons, their polarizing power and what they would do to assisinate their opponents character...for the life of me, I can't understand why Hill's debt hasn't been retired by her crazy, polarizing anti men group of supporters.. I guess they don't lover her arse that much! ROFLMAO!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

The story should have been reported on earlier. Along with a comparison to how McCain treated his first wife. The stories are so similar. The only difference being Edwards chose to keep his marriage going... to work through the tough times. McCain kicked his wife to the curb to be the Playboy Senator for a Beer Heiress and couldn't even be bothered to wait for the divorce to be finalized before getting married again.

Posted by: Laughable Commentary | August 11, 2008 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Hi "US", I'm hearing Obama leaked this information to get Edwards out of the race in Jan. Also, another very real and plaguing question I have for you is how any Democrat can consider voting for Obama if, you believe any of the information that is fast becoming available about him? I believe it and just let me say, no Obama, no way and no how?

Thanks again for keeping "US" in the loop! Mary

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I agree. Why is the news media not reporting McShame's affair? HE IS THE NOMINEE!!! It is at least an opportunity to do a follow up story about his affair now that another one is in the news.

And why in the world is there NO reporting about all the Viet Nam Vet groups apposing McShame? Voting for the torture bill was the last straw for the Vets. Google "Songbird McCain." for UTube's of these vets. You will be very UNpleasantly surprised.

The fact that the guy DOES NOT KNOW HOW TO USE A COMPUTER, a device that all businesses and governments rely upon is reason enough not to vote for this dinosaur. Ugh.

Posted by: jersey john | August 11, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I say the person running for President and commander-and-Chief should be fully vetted by media and no excuses as mention here in this article. We know Obama has some serious and credible allegations and they're not being investigated, and go ahead look into McCain as well!
___________________________________________

AND PLease by all means take a look into Hillary and Bill's Clintons...they aren't and haven't been fully vetted and that's why the rethugs were licking the dirt off their lips hoping that she could have won the nomination....All they have on Barak is retarded, pathetic and idiotic videos..however with the Clintons...we would have all be running for cover with all of the dung that would have been thrown in the democratic party's way! Sign of Hillary, YA LOST! Get over it!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

I say the person running for President and commander-and-Chief should be fully vetted by media and no excuses as mention here in this article. We know Obama has some serious and credible allegations and they're not being investigated, and go ahead look into McCain as well!

Posted by: theaz | August 11, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Who cares, you could say the same thing about Clintons lies about the snipers. You can take an election and later find many things where is this had happened or that had happened it may have been different. Truth is, I don't thing Hillary would have beat Mccain now after watching for a while. We got lucky Obama won no matter how it happened. He is destine for greatness, Hillary is a used up hag we didn't need for president.
--------
Some analysis on Edward's effect on the primary race

http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2008/08/why-howard-wolfson-is-out-of-job.html

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 3:30 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Some analysis on Edward's effect on the primary race

http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2008/08/why-howard-wolfson-is-out-of-job.html

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

why they aren't covering these stories....

George W. 'Lips' Bush : First Gay US President? (continued)
by CONSPIRACY PLANET

Oddly enough the fake reporter/ male prostitute Jeff Gannon was also named "Bulldog" on his gay sex sites like HotMilitaryStud.com, MilitaryEscorts.com and MilitaryEscortsm4m.com.

Pirate News producer John Lee (http://piratenews.org/bushgaygate.html) notes that Bush has other gay nicknames for White House familiars --

* 'Turdblossom' for gay puppeteer Karl Rove.

* 'Pooty Poot' for Vladimir Putin, Russian President and Commie KGB chief.

* 'Mr. Big O' for lispy treasury secretary Paul O'Neill, ex-CEO of ALCOA Corporation in Alcoa, Tennessee.

* 'Sally Suck-em-silly' for the late David Lewis

Kiity Kelley writes that "George earned the nickname 'Lips Bush' for his skill at giving blow jobs to his fraternity buddies."

Lee, in George Bush's GayGate, writes -- "Why is Bush so hostile to the idea of gay marriage? Perhaps because until 1987, George W. Bush was gay.

"According to a group of 29 Yale classmates who comprise Gay Ivy Leaguers for Truth, Bush was 'known to be at least sexually experimental throughout his time in college.'

"One of Bush's alleged former boyfriends, Anthony Berusca (Class of '70), told The Dallas Morning News that Bush was 'deeply conflicted about being gay, even somewhat self-hating.'

"Berusca is convinced that this conflict led to Bush's drinking problems, but describes the President as a 'gentle, caring lover......oh my'

"In 1986, the Bush family arranged for George to join Worthy Creations, a church group in El Paso that focuses on converting homosexuals through faith.

"A year later, Bush claimed to be straight, born again, and engaged to Laura Welch (Kitty Kelly in "The Family" wrote that Bush's twin daughters were not his offspring, but from a donor at a fertility clinic).

And what is Skull and Bones? The Power Elite networks of the Order of Skull and Bones and its influence in politics, government, education and business was researched and analyzed by the late historian Antony C. Sutton in his ground-breaking book "America's Secret Establishment: An Introduction to the Order of Skull and Bones" (TrineDay.com)

Confession and blackmail are part of the rites of initiation for the Order, as new members must divulge their sexual histories to other Bonesmen, so they will always be compliant in the future.

Senator John F. Kerry of Massachusetts and former President George Herbert Walker Bush are also members of the Order of Skull and Bones.

It was noted that Kerry, allegedly running against fellow Bonesman George Bush Jr. in the 2004 election, ROLLED OVER aka as "TAKING A DIVE" and played dead during most of his 2004 FAKE "campaign."

The admission of fake reporter/ male prostitute Jeff Gannon (aka James Guckert) to the White House and his unexplained 180 sleepovers have added more evidence to a Gay White House with wags now claiming that GOP stands for 'Gay Old Party.'

After all, even Republican National Committee chair Ken Mehlman is gay.

So when will George Bush come out of the closet?

Don't hold your breath...

NOTE: Pirate News producer John Lee's father was on the legal team that sued Bush Sr for narcoterrorism under RICO act and mass murder of ABC News journalists during Iran-Contra.

DEFINITIONS FROM
http://piratenews.org/bushgaygate.html


Suing George W. Bush, The All-American Felon
by JON B. EISENBERG (SALON.COM)

(July 9, 2008) U.S. officials went to extremes to stifle our legal challenge to Bush's warrantless surveillance -- but a federal judge says the program is criminal, anyway.

On July 3, Chief Judge Vaughn Walker of the U.S. District Court in California made a ruling particularly worthy of the nation's attention.

In Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation Inc. v. Bush, a key case in the epic battle over warrantless spying inside the United States, Judge Walker ruled, effectively, that President George W. Bush is a felon.

Judge Walker held that the president lacks the authority to disregard the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA -- which means Bush's warrantless electronic surveillance program was illegal.

Whether Bush will ultimately be held accountable for violating federal law with the program remains unclear. Bush administration lawyers have fought vigorously -- at times using brazen, logic-defying tactics -- to prevent that from happening.

The court battle will continue to play out as Congress continues to battle over recasting FISA and possibly granting immunity to telecom companies involved in the illegal surveillance.

More !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Other Top Stories

Suing George W. Bush, The All-American Felon by JON B. EISENBERG (SALON.COM)


Bush Fulfills Grandfather's Dream to Overthrow USA by DAVID SWANSON (AMERICAN CHRONICLE)


Kucinich Introduces 35 Bush Impeachment Articles by BOB FERTIK


Bush Claims More Powers Than King George III by MASS SCHOOL OF LAW

The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder by VINCENT BUGLIOSI, Charles Manson's PROSECUTING ATTORNEY (COMMON DREAMS)

Saddam-Bush Exile Deal Could Have Saved $6Trillion by RALPH FORBES (AMERICAN FREE PRESS)

Posted by: oh yeah Edwards and his infidelities speaks volumes about the press....one wonders | August 11, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

If I were a journalist, I would refuse to write about anyone's sex life unless it involved rape, child molestation or some other form of nonconsensual sex. I wouldn't care if I lost my job--I think peoples' privacy is sacred and I wouldn't violate it.

Posted by: Lee | August 11, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

and for all of those loosers that think Edwards' prevented Hillary from winning.....please go somewhere and crawl in a hole. Statics taken from the Iowa caucases shows that most of Edwards supporters would have supporter Barak and the ones that didn't would have voted "uncommitted!" They weren't going to vote for Mrs. Spoiled Rich Lady. She would have still ONLY gotten her 29.% (3rd place). You guys are some really pathetic sore loosers! The broad lost...get over it...she doesn't own the democratic party although she and Bill thinks they do...and you can best believe that if Obama looses in November and the slightest evidence shows that Hillary and/or any of her supporters had a wee bit to do with it, that Hill's career in politics will be over and Bill's legacy will be MUD! hahaha

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

The Obama Media (CNN, Washington post, etc) kept silent in order to not make Hillary Clinton the nominee!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

If McCain's adulterous behavior and him throwing his ailing crippled wife under the bus for Cindy isn't such a big deal, and the voters don't have a problem voting for the old goon, then why the heck is everyone covering the story of Edwards infidelities???? If they are going to make this an issue, then McCain's infidelities should be an issue, too! Otherwise this is pure hypocrisy at best!

Posted by: Lucy | August 11, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Cmon, how can he get the name of Kurtz's column wrong?

Posted by: DDAWD | August 11, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Chris, "affir"? An affair implies something more than a one night stand by some groupie. From every report we have, the woman involved had a thing for and kept score of politician's she slept with. She certainly bedded other members of the Edwards campaign staff. As far as I am concerned, this makes HER a sexual predator, not some innocent victim. Mind you, there are unconfirmed reports of McCain getting mixed up with one of these sexual gunslingers, too. It usually has nothing to do with politics or affection. It has everything to do with them being allowed to put another notch on the belt. Not something Edwards should be proud of, but you can certainly understand what happened if you think about it.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | August 11, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

maybe had you linked it with some of the internal scuttlebug about Rodham Clinton trying to bumrush the veep nomination last Thursday... and how Edwards shut down the whirl (catharsis vid) was simply masterful... or good timing. The pivit for us politicos is North Carolina and Indiana for HRC... that was her last stand, and sealed her fate. Where was Edwards during this. I do not support HRC (to say the least) but I am an old party hack and I like the stuff behind the curtain. Why I read blogs and posts.

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | August 11, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

No one cares who Edwards drops his pants for, but Patricia got it right, he put the entire Democratic party in jeopardy. "However, as a former John Edwards supporter, I am very disappointed that he decided to run for the Presidency when he knew that this fact, if he won, would have destroyed the possibility of a Democrat winning the Presidency this year (when we, as a country, need to redeem ourselves with the rest of the world and the majority of the voters in this country due to the disasterous last eight years of George and his cohort Dick). I think that John was extremely selfish to run and, yes, I do think any political career is over for him."
What a scum.
JanO

Posted by: JanO | August 11, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: "It can't happen here" - can it? | August 11, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

You made the right choice, Chris. Since Edwards is not running for office nor actually a public figure of any kind, there is no public interest angle to the extramarital affair.

John McCain IS running for president and, through his slimy and scurrilous attack advertisements against Obama, he has made character a central feature of this campaign.

So coverage of McCain's extramarital affairs is relevant. Especially pertinant is his repellant Edwards-like choice to betray his sick wife with a much younger woman. This revelation of character is very much fair game for political reporting this campaign season.

Posted by: deedee | August 11, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

There once was a lawyer named John,

Who loved to get it on,

He covered and lied,

And haughtily denied,

But the tabloid wasn't conned.

Posted by: BeowulfthePolitician | August 11, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

I agree with NaRudy. I also think that a lot of people really respect Elizabeth Edwards and would do nothing to hurt her, unlike her husband. I was a supporter of John Edwards and have to say if he had not been running, I still would not have voted for Hillary.

Posted by: SusieQ | August 11, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

WHY aren't we talking about McCAIN's CHEATING if it's something worth discussing?

He is a nominee. Edwards is not.

Posted by: Shawn | August 11, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Oh, the horror--a man running for President turned out to be merely a man! All this hyperventilating about the dire consequences that might have been--He might have thrown the election to Barack! He might have been nominated before anyone found out!! He might have been elected President before anyone found out!!! He might have been elected President and lived long enough for people not to care what he did in his personal life. . .one can only hope--

Obviously, in today's world, he's through--but I can't help wondering what the wonderful world of political theater would be like if we really cared more about pinning candidates down on issues than on salacious gossip.

Posted by: DCH | August 11, 2008 2:34 PM | Report abuse

THE EDWARDS SCANDAL COULD BE THE PIVOTAL '08 EVENT

Chris:

You handled the story correctly. But I maintain there is relevance to Barack Obama on several levels, as evidenced by the posts below.

First, the Edwards sex scandal seems to checkmate any Hillary fantasies of snatching (can I say that?) the nomination away from Obama. It conjures up unpleasant memories of the blue dress, the cigar, and Bill's penchant for "adventure."

But as Hillary realizes that her presidential ambitions have been thwarted, she can now tend to the most important business at hand: ensuring that the Dems nominate a winner. Obama is looking like he cannot win. If the tracking polls show McCain pulling ahead, his nomination becomes problematical.

Hillary holds a large bloc of delegates. She is virtually assured that they will vote en masse for her nomination on the first ballot. By that time, a significant number of superdelegates who came over to Obama late in the game could be convinced to vote with the Hillary bloc, keeping Obama from securing the nomination on the first round.

If that happens, it would be a supreme embarrassment to Obama, and could provide an opening for Hillary to withdraw her support from Obama and cede her delegates to Al Gore, to the delight of the majority of convention delegates -- even many pledged to Obama who have become disillusioned with his policy vacillations and lack of fight.

So the true importance of l'affaire Edwards is to force Hillary into the role of party savior by anointing Al Gore as the nominee.

Would Gore rise to the occasion? I think he would, especially if a number of leaders of the black community embrace his candidacy. I am sure they've already been canvassed and qualified, some by Hillary and Bill themselves in covert personal entreaties.

I've heard the argument that if the media had confirmed the Edwards affair early on, there would be no Barack Obama to contend with, since Edwards took away votes from Hillary in the early primaries. I believe there is much truth in that analysis -- which provides an even greater incentive for Hillary to play her hand now.

In sum: those pundits who initially said the Edwards affair will not affect this year's race once again may have demonstrated their naivete and proclivity to mainstream media "group-think."

BUT WILL THE ELECTION EVEN COUNT? Not if government-supported "vigilante injustice" squads are targeting Americans outside of the bounds of the law:

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/get-political-vic-livingston-opinion-expose-state-supported-vigilante-squads-doing-domestic-terrorism

Posted by: scrivener | August 11, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

A politician lying about an affair is always a story. If American politicians only ran on experience and qualifications then it would be okay to overlook personal life. But that’s not our system, we allow everyone a chance, the only major qualification is the support of other citizens. How can we expect to give informed consent if we are denied information. Edwards not only had the affair while campaigning but also with a consultant that was paid $100,000 by the campaign. This isn’t an appointed position, this is an association of choice, and it speaks to Edwards’ character. The President of the United States isn’t Speaker of the House or Chief Justice of the United States; he is both the head of the executive branch and head of State. We don’t have a Queen or Royal Family, good conduct is implicit in holding public office, hence “The Honorable” title we extend to office holders. Let the people decide what is important, what should be considered!

Posted by: DCBeans | August 11, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

definalty the right call chris and whoes jersey did you pick up? it better not be that tool bag carlos tevez otherwise i am afraid you and i may need to sti down ans have a chat about how eveil all members of manchester united are

Posted by: andy now from rockville | August 11, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

See, a weekend removed from the Edwards scandal and only the out-of-the-loop Fix is chatting about it...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: matt | August 11, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

I guess the Post got what it wanted. They got to sit on this story until Edwards no longer mattered. No pesky tough decisions about reporting or investigating on this story that 'everyone' knew about. Your decisions only make me more cynical about the Post and other mainstream media outlets.

It always seemed that the Edwards campaign underperformed in the primaries - did he suffer because 'everyone' knew he had this affair?

Posted by: Josey23 | August 11, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

"Why has there been not a SINGLE story about the fact that McCain committed adultery and was simultaneously married to TWO WOMEN in any mainstream newspaper other than the LA Times when it's in official state records?" I can answer that one. McCain has never been shown to have been married to both Carol and Cindy at the same time. The fact that he applied for and received a marriage license prior to the finalization of his divorce, while it shows him to be rather cruel, clueless, and classless, does not make John McCain a bigamist. His divorce became final in April 1980 and he remarried the next month.

Posted by: kguy1 | August 11, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

THE EDWARDS SCANDAL COULD BE THE PIVOTAL '08 EVENT

Chris:

You handled the story correctly. But I maintain there is relevance to Barack Obama on several levels, as evidenced by the posts below.

First, the Edwards sex scandal seems to checkmate any Hillary fantasies of snatching (can I say that?) the nomination away from Obama. It conjures up unpleasant memories of the blue dress, the cigar, and Bill's penchant for "adventure."

But as Hillary realizes that her presidential ambitions have been thwarted, she can now tend to the most important business at hand: ensuring that the Dems nominate a winner. Obama is looking like he cannot win. If the tracking polls show McCain pulling ahead, his nomination becomes problematical.

Hillary holds a large bloc of delegates. She is virtually assured that they will vote en masse for her nomination on the first ballot. By that time, a significant number of superdelegates who came over to Obama late in the game could be convinced to vote with the Hillary bloc, keeping Obama from securing the nomination on the first round.

If that happens, it would be a supreme embarrassment to Obama, and could provide an opening for Hillary to withdraw her support from Obama and cede her delegates to Al Gore, to the delight of the majority of convention delegates -- even many pledged to Obama who have become disillusioned with his policy vacillations and lack of fight.

So the true importance of l'affaire Edwards is to force Hillary into the role of party savior by anointing Al Gore as the nominee.

Would Gore rise to the occasion? I think he would, especially if a number of leaders of the black community embrace his candidacy. I am sure they've already been canvassed and qualified, some by Hillary and Bill themselves in covert personal entreaties.

I've heard the argument that if the media had confirmed the Edwards affair early on, there would be no Barack Obama to contend with, since Edwards took away votes from Hillary in the early primaries. I believe there is much truth in that analysis -- which provides an even greater incentive for Hillary to play her hand now.

In sum: those pundits who initially said the Edwards affair will not affect this year's race once again may have demonstrated their naivete and proclivity to mainstream media "group-think."

BUT WILL THE ELECTION EVEN COUNT? Not if government-supported "vigilante injustice" squads are targeting Americans outside of the bounds of the law:

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/get-political-vic-livingston-opinion-expose-state-supported-vigilante-squads-doing-domestic-terrorism

Posted by: scrivener | August 11, 2008 1:55 PM | Report abuse


.
The loony-left liberal media has been hiding the facts about the scandalous affair of edwards for many months (while his wife has been dying of cancer!). They have found it better just to concentrate on their ALL-HUSSEIN, ALL-THE-TIME propaganda.

But the truth about slimebags has a way of getting out, and now that edwards has been exposed the voters are finally beginning to smell the stench from the outrageous behavior of the liberal media in its distortions, lies and cover-ups. They are also beginning to understand that the liberal media has fully and completely abandoned all journalistic ethics and will do anything to ensure victory for their favorite left-wing candidates.

In November the voters will, hopefully, reflect their disgust and outrage over how they have been treated by the liberal media by voting appropriately.

/

Posted by: ALEX H. | August 11, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

I am glad The Fix stayed away from this story for two reasons:

1) There is nothing wrong with respecting his wife (cancer patient!) and young children enough to let details come out on their own, if they will. That is to be commended.

2) This is a politics blog, not a rag. There are so many more pithy subjects to which we should turn our attention. Let's have more side-by-side comparison of policy, shall we?


http://ilfamilypolitics.blogspot.com

Posted by: Julia Kelly | August 11, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

I commend you for not jumping on this story when it was only the National Inquirer that reported it. However, as a former John Edwards supporter, I am very disappointed that he decided to run for the Presidency when he knew that this fact, if he won, would have destroyed the possibility of a Democrat winning the Presidency this year (when we, as a country, need to redeem ourselves with the rest of the world and the majority of the voters in this country due to the disasterous last eight years of George and his cohort Dick). I think that John was extremely selfish to run and, yes, I do think any political career is over for him. I also do not believe that Elizabeth knew (she is a very smart woman) or she would have discouraged his run. Unfortunately, he betrayed first, his wife and family and second, all of his supporters.

Posted by: Patricia C. Gilbert | August 11, 2008 1:31 PM | Report abuse

It really is SOOO outrageous that Edwards had an extramarital affair. And it's even MORE outrageous that the media has had such a blackout on this RED-HOT story! When you think about it, how dare Edwards even run for president?

You know, I can't think of ANY precedent for this or for the media blackout on it, particularly not this quote from the LA Times:

"McCain did not sue his wife for divorce until Feb. 19, 1980, and he wrote in his court petition that he and his wife had "cohabited" until Jan. 7 of that year -- or for the first nine months of his relationship with Hensley.

Although McCain suggested in his autobiography that months passed between his divorce and remarriage, the divorce was granted April 2, 1980, and he wed Hensley in a private ceremony five weeks later. McCain obtained an Arizona marriage license on March 6, 1980, while still legally married to his first wife."

Why has there been not a SINGLE story about the fact that McCain committed adultery and was simultaneously married to TWO WOMEN in any mainstream newspaper other than the LA Times when it's in official state records? Even though we're having a fit over Edwards' affair? Here's a hint as to which is more important: one of them could be the 44th president of the US, and one of them can't.

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-divorce11-2008jul11,0,6546861.story?page=1

Posted by: Anonymous | August 11, 2008 1:30 PM | Report abuse

You got it right, Chris.

When the Enquirer piece started to gain some traction, Edwards was more celebrity than politician. As you note, he wasn't planning on another Senate run or a shot at being Governor, and no one (credible) believed that he had even an outside shot at being Obama's running mate. I don't expect to read about other celebrity adulterers here, and at this stage of his career, that's all Edwards is.

Of course, there are the revisionists who insist (and I see that half-wit Wolfson has joined them today) that Edwards cost Clinton Iowa, and thus the Democratic nomination. That might be the only thing Fix-worthy about the affair, but these demented musings were placed in check while you were gone.

Posted by: bondjedi | August 11, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

As far as The Fix goes, until the story became public with confirmed credible sources, I think that you were correct in staying away from it.

Some of The Fix contributors don't have any compunction about making it a gossip blog; we don't need the professionals to contribute to that. You can stay within the boundaries of journalistic ethics and pursue stories, while those that traffic in gossip use The Fix to push their agenda. However, we have found out more than once, that some rumors actually have been correct. Knowing that, we readers just have to filter the postings for ourselves.

However, I not sure that the wringing of hands over this by Post editors as described by Kurtz, impresses me.

Somewhere within all of the reporting done by the Post on our politicians. I would think that they could have included a statement to the effect, "There are rumors concerning an affair that Sen. Edwards may have had. At this time, the Washington Post is unable to find any credible sources who can confirm the allegations."

It's not the first time the Post has had to deal with this. It's had to cover 'affair' allegations for at least two Kennedys, Eisenhower during WW II, and George H. W. Bush among many others.

By now, I would think that there would be a fairly comprehensive policy at the Post for handling such things, with enough flexibility to account for extenuating circumstances. It should be fairly cut-and-dried.

Law enforcement officials who don't want to compromise on-going investigations, when asked about anything not public say, "We neither confirm nor deny that there is...."

Law enforcement officials who do that consistently, never have any problem.

I don't see any reason why the MSM can't have an equivalent.

Posted by: Nor'Easter | August 11, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

And this 2008 Presidential Election Weekly Poll Says It all. You Won't Believe These Results!

http://www.votenic.com

Posted by: JB | August 11, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

welcome back, Chris.
During the 1992 campaign (see Flowers, Jennifer) the media learned the pitfals of jumping the gun on extra-marital affairs involving presidential candidates. Look at as a move back to the middle ground of adversarial reporting- Watergate pushed reporters to be very skeptical and aggressive with office holders. Failures in overzealousness taught them to find a happy medium.

Posted by: sfcpoll | August 11, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

The Fix asks
"Did we make the right call?"

Yes and No. You started with the right call: ignoring the story. Then you pooched it by writing this piece.


"if you were in our place, how would you have handled the Edwards affair story?"

By writing something relevant this morning, instead of this crap.

Why not dive into an obscure house race instead? Maybe a Monday edition of the House Line, as its being pre-empted by the VP line?

Posted by: bsimon | August 11, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

I commend you, Chris, for not "reporting" on a former presidential candidates extra-marital affair. I read your blog because I appreciate your insightful perspective and thoughtful reflections of the politics of the day. I am only interested in a politician's sexual behavior when it impacts his/her voting or electoral possibilities (such as the uber-hypocritical anti-gay "I'm not gay"--but I like to have sex with men in airport bathrooms Idaho Senator Larry Craig). In such cases, it strikes me as appropriate to report and to place into discussion for the public domain (anti-gay crusader having sex with men) because such dissonance of professed public morality and private hypocrisy will most certainly impact how I vote.

The only thing I wish SOMEONE would report on in the Edwards debacle is how he knew that he's not the father of Hunter's baby... based on the timing? UGH!!!Perhaps, as a married man who was running for president, he could have said, "I'm not the father because, despite the fact we had sex and I violated the ethics of my marriage, I didn't completely lose touch with reality and I used a condom." Frankly, that would have been a bit redemptive and shown some moral character. But, "I'm not the baby because the timing doesn't work?" Oy.

Thanks, Chris, for keeping to your higher ethical standards.

Posted by: Michael in Seattle | August 11, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Jeeze Chris, again? You know that Edwards isn't running for anything right? He's barely even a public figure anymore. I don't want to hear about McCain's sleazy personal life either, but if the tabloid beast must be fed *he* at least is running for president.

Posted by: aleks | August 11, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse

"Explaining Edwards"

Who cares?

Posted by: bsimon | August 11, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

The Democratic PARTY BOSSES - The OLD BOYS CLUB - shook down the banking industry and diverted the money to Obama's campaign. They wanted a candidate they could control, and that was not Hillary Clinton. So they fixed the nomination with some help from Edwards.

Now Obama has peaked early and will most likely loose to McCain.

The smart money would be MCCAIN/CLINTON 08

Posted by: Michael | August 11, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Obamas Scandal is Bigger than Edwards

The implication of the Edwards scandal is that, if ABC News’s top investigative reporter could take Edwards side, without any serious checking of the facts, then other candidates may be concealing scandals and hoping and planning to get away with it. That is certainly the case with Obama, who is far more of a media favorite than Edwards ever was and has, with the help of the influential Associated Press (AP), carefully concealed his relationship with an identified CPUSA member.

Obamas communist connection, which he failed to disclose in his 1995 book, Dreams From My Father, by referring to Davis only as Frank and ignoring his communist affiliation, is a far more serious scandal than an Edwards love child.

As I commented to Michael Savage on the Savage Nation radio program last week, this is the key to understanding Obama because Davis influence over him during his high-school years in Hawaii helps explain why he would later associate with terrorists, communists and socialists.

http://www.aim.org/aim-column/obamas-scandal-is-bigger-than-edwards/

Posted by: Volubrjotr | August 11, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

The biggest news in 10 days was when a former Senator and former Presidential candidate who holds no official position and is largely ignored by the media admits to having an affair two years ago.

Meanwhile in those 10 days 21 American soldiers died in Iraq and Afghanistan, The Iraqi government announced it would not hold elections this fall, Presidential candidate McCain was caught lying in his commercials, President Bush was at the Olympics, Georgia and Russia are at war, etc., etc., etc.

Maybe some perspective might be in order?

Posted by: NaRudy | August 11, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

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