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Edwards: Shrum was wrong

Former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards (D) today rejected the assertion that political calculations were his overriding concern in casting his 2002 vote in favor of the use-of-force resolution against Iraq.

former Sen. John Edwards
John Edwards addressing the Firefighters gathering in Washington on Wednesday. (AP)

"Political people talk to you all the time," he said following a speech on Capitol Hill to the International Association of Fire Fighters. "There is only one decision maker and that is me."

Former Edwards consultant Bob Shrum alleges in a forthcoming memoir that he and several other Edwards political advisers counseled the senator to vote for the resolution in order to maintain his viability as a presidential candidate in 2004.

During his formal remarks, which kicked off a day-long presidential forum featuring the majority of top-tier candidates, Edwards focused on his willingness to not just talk the talk of organized labor but walk the walk.

"You deserve people who will stand with you and walk the line with you," Edwards said. He urged the audience to consider whether the other presidential candidates offered anything more than rhetoric when it came to the concerns of organized labor. Asked later whether he was referring to any specific candidates, Edwards said he was not.

By Chris Cillizza  |  March 14, 2007; 10:40 AM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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