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The Edwards Factor: What We Know and Don't Know

Former Sen. John Edwards' s announcement that his wife's cancer has returned but that he will remain an active candidate for president has captivated the political world.

In an attempt to make sense of what impact the development will have on the field, we've broken it down into two categories: what we know and what we don't.

What we know:
*Edwards will continue his normal campaign activities as will -- apparently -- Elizabeth. "I expect to do next week all the things I did last week," she said at the press conference in Chapel Hill. She did acknowledge that there may be times when she backs away from her planned activities but said that had as much to do with her age as the cancer.

* Elizabeth Edwards is not the average political spouse. She was highly visible during the 2004 campaign, and following that race she became even more prominent with the disclosure that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer. Her memoir, "Saving Graces," which detailed her fight against cancer as well as how she coped with her son Wade's death in a car accident, raised her profile even higher, as she appeared on "Oprah", "Charlie Rose" and others to tell her story. Expect her to play an even bigger role -- health allowing -- as a surrogate for the campaign in the days and weeks to come.

*Attacks on Edwards -- either overt or covert -- will be more difficult for his rivals to launch. There is no more sympathetic figure than a husband taking care of his ill wife, so it would be highly risky for any of Edwards's opponents to say anything but glowing things about him and about Elizabeth's strength under difficult circumstances.

What we don't know:

*How the voting public will respond to the news that Edwards will continue to campaign full force after learning that his wife's cancer has returned. One spin on it was provided by Elizabeth Edwards:"It's not about John Edwards. If it were it would be easy to give it up." But there is another perspective: Why is Edwards going on with the campaign? The answer to that question can be easily reduced -- and, to be clear, we are not reducing it to this -- to personal ambition. Edwards is independently wealthy and has already run for president once. He has previously said that the only thing that could keep him out of the 2008 race was Elizabeth's health. So, now that her health problems have returned, why wouldn't he drop out?

*What happens if Elizabeth's condition worsens. Edwards admitted that the fact Elizabeth's cancer has spread to the bone means that it is no longer curable and compared it to a person who has diabetes. "We are very optimistic about this," he said. Elizabeth noted that she shows no physical signs of the cancer's return. But, what if she becomes more symptomatic over the next weeks or months. Or what if her condition turns far more dire? Have the Edwards privately set a timetable to re-evaluate Elizabeth's condition and see whether the campaign continues?

* How (if at all) does the announcement affect Edwards' fundraising? Remember that political donors tend to look at their contributions as investments in a candidate. Although Edwards insists the campaign will go on unchanged, it's clear that there is now a much greater likelihood that he might leave the race at some point. Will Edwards still be able to convince wavering donors that he is a good investment?

By Chris Cillizza  |  March 22, 2007; 1:55 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: The Line: Shaking Up the GOP Presidential Rankings

Comments

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Posted by: xckfngsk | March 27, 2007 6:11 PM | Report abuse

I, too, have had breast cancer but it was stage2. Although not as serious as Elizabeth Edward's diagnosis, her sentiments about how to live her life matched mine. Whatever I was doing before my diagnosis, I was going to continue to do after my three surgeries, sixteen weeks of chemotherapy, and thirty-three radiation treatments, and that is exactly what I am doing. In fact I am doing even more. We all have an expiration date, but we do not know when it is. Elizabeth and John Edwards have made their choice. I respect that choice and I support that choice. I was planning on supporting John Edwards presidential campaign before his wife's announcement, and I am still going to support his campaign following their announcement. My prayers and best wishes to the Edward's family.

Posted by: Maureen Murphy | March 26, 2007 7:23 PM | Report abuse

I am thrilled to have a candidate such as John Edwards to consider in the next presidential election. Edwards, Obama, Clinton--wow! After living unhappily with Bush as President, the very thought of having someone as smart and capable as the top Democratic candidates is so exciting.

Posted by: Don | March 26, 2007 1:13 PM | Report abuse

From someone named "Vinny" at 2:17
"HE JUST LOST MY VOTE!"

What a lie! The spinmeisters have given all of you your talking points, and as the days go by, you will all condemnt yourselves one hateful word at a time.

******Who are you? Are you able to read minds and hearts too? Are you a God? Then if you are so capable to read minds and hearts and play God by telling me what I believe, as well as what a liar I am, then why not use your Godly abilities and heal the poor woman.

Losers like you give all political spin doctors a bad rap.

AGAIN, read it and weep:

JOHN EDWARDS JUST LOST MY VOTE!

Posted by: Vinny T. | March 25, 2007 2:34 AM | Report abuse

Hey, does anyone want to talk about Hillary? It's always stimulating. How such a sultry, head-turning, musical BABE could put up with being Bill's wife is beyond me. Hill, if you read this, know that I will always have a place in my heart for you. And in my bed.

Hillary - call me!

Posted by: lylepink | March 24, 2007 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Dear Leader Tim Kalemkarian, Best Performance by an Actor in a Comedy Series Tim Kalemkarian, Employee of the Month Tim Kalemkarian: hardest major candidate to predict.

Posted by: Kalemkarian, Inc. | March 24, 2007 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Best in Show: Tim Kalemkarian. Best Boy Grip: Tim Kalemkarian. Best Supporting Actor is a Comedy Role: Tim Kalemkarian. Tim Kalemkarian... he's more than you thought.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 24, 2007 1:44 PM | Report abuse

US President Tim Kalemkarian, US Senate Tim Kalemkarian, US House Tim Kalemkarian: best major candidate.

Posted by: anonymous | March 24, 2007 11:42 AM | Report abuse

I would like to speak to all the pigs like Vinny.You should all line up and go to Iraq and serve your king.Guiliani has cancer and so does Tony Snow and you don't find them filled with GREED!!Why is it women always get the people who hate themselves dumping on them.Elizabeth has far better qualities then these two men.

Posted by: Granny | March 23, 2007 9:24 PM | Report abuse

I finished Elizabeth Edwards' book "Saving Graces" about a week before this announcement came out. In light of what I read, I would not be in the least surprised if she urged her husband to continue with his campaign. She obviously believes very strongly in him and in his ability to serve this country.

Posted by: Becki | March 23, 2007 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Honored to be a member of the Edwards for President campaign, and a supporter since 2004, I was tremendously relieved to see that John and Elizabeth are still in it for the long haul. John Edwards has distinguished himself to be the best candidate to lead our country as the nation's 44th President until 2016 ~~ at which time I expect his vice president Barack Obama to continue the fight as the 45th (with, no doubt, Senator Obama's own personal stamp for the following eight years).

Were this scenario to be played out, people passionate about this country and its status within the nations of the world would be most excellently served. In terms of hope, the people that John Edwards would incorporate within his administration would be the most vigilant at fighting for every American's pursuit of life and liberty ~~ the most obvious first task would be the responsible protection of our sovereign land while deciding which sized footprint we should be maintaining in other lands. At this point, the so-called war has become the herd of elephants in the room ~~ it is unlikely that situations and conditions in the middle east, nor our symbiotic relationship with those countries and others involved, will be less impacted.

By 2008, we will need to take stock of our place in the world and see how best to responsibly represent our interests without 'laying our trip' (a sixties' expression) on other cultures. Other writers have spoken eloquently of hope, and many are reading and writing on this website in response to John's notice. It would seem that many of us are passionate and hopeful about the same themes that have overwhelmed Elizabeth and John for our peoples ~~ a livable wage ~~ health care for all ~~ nationwide affordable and equitable community-based solutions for care and education of pre-school, children, teens, adults and elders ~~ setting the tone for the expansion of service, technical, tutorial, sports, arts, programs for our youth ~~ creative solutions to domestic and international issues ~~ encouragement of the growth and development of communities ~~ better solutions to affordable transportation ~~ focus on 'appropriate technology' in different regions... renewable energy, conservation, recycling, healthy large and small farms, replenishing our soils, respect for raising quality and nourishing vegetables & fruits, grains & meats ~~ oversight to insure clean air and water ~~ support for the prospering of all sizes of companies and encouragement for them to be responsible standard-bearers of this economy ~~ a 'trust but verify' focus on our domestic and international interests ~~ build networks within the legislative/ judicial/ and military towards the most honest communication, with respect in finding common ground towards responsible solutions.

These are few of the multitude of issues to responsibly ponder when selecting the best candidate for 2008. The Edwards' administration would be the most ready to tackle the challenges for our present and our future, and is the best hope that we have for leaving the world a better place for our children. We can be sure that John and Elizabeth will be there for their three children as none of us could endeavor to do better. As a caring and passionate mother, Elizabeth has no choice than to play out this hand. I honor and understand her laser-like focus, and will be cheering on their fight. You go, girl. (And if you are moving boxes, remember to lift with your legs.)

Posted by: Cris | March 23, 2007 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Elizabeth Edwards is dying. I hate saying that because she's a fantastic, smart, and strong woman. I've talked with my doctor sister about this and with how advanced and deep her cancer is, patients are normally told they only have a year or two left to live. I hope John Edwards drops out of the race, even though I do like him, to take care of her. He should cherish his time with her because she more than likely doesn't have that much left. As he himself said, it's not curable so much as treatable.

Posted by: Emily | March 23, 2007 5:52 PM | Report abuse

"To stay in the campaign is a wrong decision - it just isn't rational. He can run again in 2012 but he can't get the next 2 years with his wife back. They also have 2 young children to consider. While it's true most of us don't know when we're going to die, some of us do... and to waste precious time campaigning for president while your wife is battling an incurable cancer... it just doesn't seem right to me."
It may seem wrong to you - but its not your decision. Maybe that's the way she would prefer to spend the last few years of her life - fighting for something her and John believe in, reaching for a better America together - rather than laying in bed feeling sorry for herself! Oh - and 2012 we'll hopefully have an incumbent Democrat - so it would be 2016 and by that time nobody may remember who Edwards is - this IS his best chance to do what they obviously both feel very strongly about!

Posted by: Jennifer | March 23, 2007 3:11 PM | Report abuse

I am disgusted by those who have left comments questioning John Edwards commitment to his wife/family or insinuating that he is using the situation to his advantage. Saying he should set aside his "political aspirations" to take care of his wife - maybe she doesn't want him to. We are in a dire predicament as a country - Bush has ruined so much and we need a strong man to take us out of this hell hole. He's not "abandoning" his wife - they are on this journey together and I think its a VERY selfless one!!! And no, I'm not even a John Edwards supporter, I'm a Barack Obama supporter - but I have much respect for Edwards and his wife!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Jennifer L. | March 23, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerois at the onset of my second year of law school. I continued and graduated the next year even though I lost vision in my right eye twice with optic neuritis and many family asked me to take a year of absence.

My mother died of cancer 11 years ago. When she lost her mental strength was when she quickly worsened.

From these experiences, I understand the Edwards decision. You have to battle and retain as much of a normal life as possible because without that, the disease will take over.

I am sorry that others question the Edwards' decision. We should just respect it and wish them the best. We would want the same if we were in their shoes.

Posted by: nb | March 23, 2007 1:28 PM | Report abuse

To those who have posted what can only be interpreted as judgmental and self-righteous comments, I would only say that in judging others, (especially those in situations like the one in which John and Elizabeth Edwards are currently finding themselves), you are not saying anything of value about this courageous couple, but merely revealing your own lack of compassion and your need to judge others.

Posted by: Joan Conroy | March 23, 2007 1:24 PM | Report abuse

I applaud Mr. and Mrs. Edwards, and am glad that he is staying in the race. My prayers go out to them and their family and hope that they will continue to make a difference in America. Keep the faith and I will be hoping and praying that you will be well again.

Posted by: Sheila Ravin | March 23, 2007 1:08 PM | Report abuse

I will be praying for The Edwards family, over the last few national election I have voted for the Republican Party. This is the first time in a decade I am considering voting for the other party. Mr. Edwards presents; compassion, depth of international concerns, knowledge of the middle-class decline and the need for educational focus for our kids.

I sure hope he stays in the race, and the voters really look at the depth of his leadership in the midst of this family deep concern.

Posted by: Derek | March 23, 2007 12:35 PM | Report abuse

How do you suppose a president would act if the first lady was diagnosed the wame as Elizabeth Edwards???

Would you naysayers expect him to resign?

I, for one, respect Elizabeth's courage, and would hope this proves that they both see a much bigger issue in Edwards' presidency.

I WANT a President who can continue to lead under mortal personal pressure, who puts the future of his nation above the daily trauma that life and death invariably demand.

Would you all prefer we simply elect single men or women to our highest offices, to assure they never have to deal with illness, or, God forbid, death of a loved-one?

The President would have no choice but to forge ahead, and coldly, with calculation, separate themselves from their own emotions, for the sake of our nation. And that is clearly what Elizabeth Edwards expects of her husband, and rightly so.

Edwards has not been cold or careless in this decision, but he has proven he has the tempered steel to proceed with a higher calling, in spite of his personal, inevitable disappointments.

Posted by: JEP | March 23, 2007 11:22 AM | Report abuse

From someone named "Vinny" at 2:17
"HE JUST LOST MY VOTE!"

What a lie! The spinmeisters have given all of you your talking points, and as the days go by, you will all condemnt yourselves one hateful word at a time.

Edwards never had your vote, if he did you are one of the most fickle people I have ever read, and I would guess your loyalties were well established long before you lied about changing your mind about Edwards. This is just political subterfuge like our old pal Zouk from before the election when he posed as a young family man Democrat who was so disgusted with his own party, he refused to even vote.

Your lies are so transparent, even the most ignorant "Fix" readers can see it for what it is, just a desperate campaign operative who is trying to spin this whole story as political fodder.

Chris, I thought your spot on KO last night was very classy, and I can only say thank you for your integrity, and I hope it rules all your future words. You know now that your friends at politico are quite capable of being dumb suckers, so trust your own judgement, theirs is tainted.

All these politicos who want to skew this into a political tool need to learn what "shame" means, and find a place again in their hearts for truth and justice.

This kind of political hackery just makes the whole system tainted.

Posted by: JEP | March 23, 2007 11:07 AM | Report abuse

To the republican poster who suggested that I was 'blinded' by my hatred of all things republcan -- you sounded like a truly decent person and to you I apologize. But read through some of the bile and vicious attacts on the Edwards above, and then tell me that most republican are not vicious, mean-spirited and vile.

what a nest of vipers.

Posted by: sam | March 23, 2007 8:03 AM | Report abuse

I think your last point is the most poignant. If He's half the man I think he is, his wife will trump the campaign. He may run, but drop out if Elizabeth needs him.

Posted by: SPIIDERWEBâ„¢ | March 23, 2007 4:37 AM | Report abuse

Go to Yahoo/health and read about Stage 4 breast cancer...the approximate 5 year survival rate with this type of cancer is about 16%. Most die within 2 years. To stay in the campaign is a wrong decision - it just isn't rational. He can run again in 2012 but he can't get the next 2 years with his wife back. They also have 2 young children to consider. While it's true most of us don't know when we're going to die, some of us do... and to waste precious time campaigning for president while your wife is battling an incurable cancer... it just doesn't seem right to me. Comparing her condition to diabetes is irrational - a majority of diabetics do not die within 2 years of diagnosis! That this couple gave less than 24 hours to this decision is apparent.

Posted by: Laura | March 23, 2007 3:16 AM | Report abuse

This tragic event will drive away major donors, and will accelerate John Edwards' decision to once again formally run for VP.

Posted by: Robert* | March 23, 2007 2:32 AM | Report abuse

I think the analogy to an incumbent president and his or her spouse is helpful in evaluating the Edward's decision to continue with their campaign. I believe that the country would respect a first term incumbent president's decision to either continue or suspend a reelection campaign in the wake of his or her spouse receiving a stage IV cancer diagnosis regardless of which choice was actually made...we would not question the motives of an incumbent if the incumbent continued to run for re-election but neither would we question the decision to step away from a campaign for a second term...we would respect that it is a personal decision. Likewise we should respect this decision by John and Elizabeth Edwards, and we should keep them in our thoughts or prayers but we should continue to evaluate the candidate and his campaign in the same way we did before this sad announcement.

Posted by: TJS | March 23, 2007 2:16 AM | Report abuse

I find Elizabeth Edwards to be incredibly brave. I would like to think that if I were faced with this news, I would not "cower in a corner" and I would continue what I loved doing - FIGHTING to make this country a better place. This isn't about ambition. She is a determined, intelligent and caring woman - she cares for her family AND her country. She's not giving up. And I wouldn't let my husband give up either!! No matter what you think, you have to give her that respect. I do believe the best thing about the Edwards is they do want to make America a better place. I honor her and pray for her.

Posted by: erin | March 23, 2007 1:32 AM | Report abuse

I am a devoted Democrat, although not an Edwards fan. Overall these posts have raised some very valid points: no, I wouldn't want my loved ones to give up their dreams if I discovered that I had cancer, and yes, going through a presidential campaign while also trying to spend quality time, any amount of quality time, with a sick loved one is very very difficult. The choice must be very difficult, and hopefully we will step up our efforts to find a cure.
But to raise the more selfish point, do we, the American people, really want a President whose wife is dying of cancer? What if, God forbid, she reaches the stage where she is substantially ill while he is in office? or...when theres a crisis? or...at any point when it might be important for the "leader of the free world" to be relatively free of personal stress and concentrating on executive duties? Edwards is a good man, and any good man (Newt is not included in that category) would be distracted by the sufferings of his wife. Would things just not get done? Would his unelected cabinet and staff be making decisions for him?
Perhaps not the most sensitive questions right now, but this man is running to be the President of the United States--I would prefer not to have to make him question between those responsibilities and his love for his wife.

Posted by: KC | March 23, 2007 1:19 AM | Report abuse

first, in her appearance today, i was surprised at how much weight elizabeth edwards has lost. i sincerely hope this was the result of her intentionally dieting and nothing else.

as for why edwards will continue his campaign...
my feeling is that elizabeth edwards is the type that does most things full speed ahead. they both said they are not the type to "cower in the corner," i think those were his words, in the face of difficult situations.

furthermore, my bet is that regardless of whether elizabeth senses or thinks she only has a few years to live that she ALWAYS wants to make the most of her time and her time with her husband and family in a most productive way...and she believes that propelling her husband to the presidency is what she and he want and what is best for the country...and therefore for their own children's futures.

i am quite moved by the edwards and their difficult situation and i frankly hope she beats all the odds and is around for a long, long time because she seems like an exceptional person.

Posted by: ROZ | March 23, 2007 12:46 AM | Report abuse

As someone who is currently in remission with Multiple Myeloma, another one of those non-curable but treatable bone cancers, I can well understand and respect the position that the Edwards family is in. Yes, it is probably going to kill her eventually. But chances are she will live long enough to get her kids raised. You can't just put your life on the back burner and wait to die. That's a waste of the time you have. You set your priorities, and do the most important stuff while you still can. One thing about looking death in the eye is that you're not the same anymore. You know what's important and what isn't. And I really want someone in charge who understands that.

Posted by: JanG | March 23, 2007 12:07 AM | Report abuse

Edwards is a typical hand-wringy pansy liberal girly man.

A Real Man would have dumped the needy, useless woman and gotten a new healthy mare.

Posted by: roo | March 23, 2007 12:04 AM | Report abuse

Everyone put politics to rest, say a prayer for Elizabeth & John Edwards and their family and let their decisions be THEIR decisions!

Posted by: VB | March 22, 2007 11:53 PM | Report abuse

Have you ever seen a more arrogant politician than John Edwards today.
What type of person would do this to a spouse with stage 4 cancer?
Sure, Mrs. Edwards wants the campaign to go on. That is to be expected.

What of the children? They have an eight-year-old and a six-year-old. I guess they gave their dad the "green light" to pursue his political ambition at all costs.
The public however will send Mr. Edwards home to be with his family. The money will dry up. The public will turn against Mr. Edwards. Most people who run for president and lose don't try it again. If he had never run before maybe the public could accept him needing to stay in the race, but he has been rejected by primary voters already.

Most candidates think it is "all about me." No one is a better example of that mentality than John Edwards.

Posted by: Jim Metrock | March 22, 2007 11:20 PM | Report abuse

This whole story is really sad, but it can't keep me from mentioning Hillary, IMO our next POTUS. Why, just last night I had the strangest dream. Hillary and I were on the Starship Enterprise, and she was Captain Kirk. I was Spock. The stretchy uniform really did wonders for her sagging figure, and it was only logical for me to gaze longingly at her as I was sharpening my ears. Soon enough, I thought to myself. Soon enough you'll be on T.J. Hooker, and I will concentrate on my art. But tonight, Captain, tonight is for us. I must have been thinking out loud, because Hillary / Kirk turned to me and brayed lovingly, "Let's continue the conversation." Most logical, I thought to myself, and my pulse quickened as my eyes followed the wrinkles in her throat down past her adam's apple to where they disappeared in her sensible Starfleet blouse. Suddenly, she turned, as the loudspeaker blared "Cap'n! Cap'n! The voting blocks! Thar brreakin' oop! I canna hold 'em no more!" She stood quickly, practically, bleating something about a "vast intergalactic conspiracy" and disappeared down the hatchway.

When I woke up, my sheets were all sticky.

This is why I support Hillary so strongly. She floatus my POTUS.

Posted by: lylepink | March 22, 2007 11:13 PM | Report abuse

This whole story is really sad, but it can't keep me from mentioning Hillary, our next POTUS. Why, just last night I had the strangest dream. Hillary and I were on the Starship Enterprise, and she was Captain Kirk. I was Spock. The stretchy uniform really did wonders for her sagging figure, and it was only logical for me to gaze longingly at her as I was sharpening my ears. Soon enough, I thought to myself. Soon enough you'll be on T.J. Hooker, and I will concentrate on my art. But tonight, Captain, tonight is for us. I must have been thinking out loud, because Hillary / Kirk turned to me and brayed lovingly, "Let's continue the conversation." Most logical, I thought to myself, and my pulse quickened as my eyes followed the wrinkles in her throat down past her adam's apple to where they disappeared in her sensible Starfleet blouse. Suddenly, she turned, as the loudspeaker blared "Cap'n! Cap'n! The voting blocks! Thar brreakin' oop! I canna hold 'em no more!" She stood quickly, practically, bleating something about a "vast intergalactic conspiracy" and disappeared down the hatchway.

When I woke up, my sheets were all sticky.

This is why I support Hillary so strongly. She floatus my POTUS.

Posted by: lylepink | March 22, 2007 11:07 PM | Report abuse

I'm suprised at the posts demanding that John and Elizabeth Edwards retreat so they can sit around and wait to see how long she lives. Everyday we are making more and more progress improving and extending the lives of cancer patients. Everyday.

Lance Armstrong was diagnosed with prostate, lung and brain cancer. His doctors gave him a 50/50 chance of surviving. And look what happened.

My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1990, and had another bought 13 years later. I can't recall a time where she decided that she was probably going to die. Instead, it was, "Ok let's take the treatments, hope for the best, and keep going." Today she's doing well and dying is not something she frets about nightly.

I too am a breast cancer survivor. I had a young child and had to work through my therapy. It was rough at times, but I believe working helped me, keeping me focused on other things. Also it's important to remain as active as you can for yourself and your kids.

Maybe with John and Elizabeth Edwards staying in the race naysayers will realize that having a disease doesn't make you totally useless. The Edwards' probably feel they have a lot to give to this country.

Posted by: Victoria | March 22, 2007 11:00 PM | Report abuse

As a Republican that truly detests John Edwards, all i can say is that John and Elizabeth Edwards have my prayers this day. I think that what they decide to do as a couple is entirely up to them. They are political creatures and it would not surprise me at all to think that there is a political calculation to their actions. But, again, that is up to them to decide. If they are fine with it, who am i to argue. Today they get my prayers. I can wait until tomorrow to be cynical.

Posted by: Dave! | March 22, 2007 10:45 PM | Report abuse

I'm wondering if Edwards is just saving face. Like Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco, he might not be so sincere, and might be reaffirming his interest publicly while questioning it privately. He declared that he would make an announcement about his campaign's future, not his personal future. Plus, on MSNBC's website I initially read that he would suspend his campaign. I initially expected that it would take weeks, if not months, for him to be able to accurately assess the seriousness of his wife's condition, due to schedules and doctor visits (and I still kind of do expect it to). My initial reaction to the fact that he would keep running was that it was due to ambition. He has been running for President constantly since 2002, and thats a lot of work to throw away. Plus, his lead in Iowa is such a juicy prospect for him and makes him not want to quit. I just think that no decision will be made until this summer. He DID say that his wife's health could keep him out of the Democratic field. Personally, I think he should drop out for the good of his family, and maybe (though he may have moved too far left) challenge Sen. Elizabeth Dole in 2008 instead. I wonder if voters will look at it as a selfish decision and look at him as not a true "family man," an attack Republicans are sure to make if he's nominated. Fundraising started well in '04 but dried up a bit, so fundraising was a potential obstacle from the start. Plus, hes no longer the "fresh face" which could impact fundraising. This is just another threat to his financial capabilities. Drop out, Edwards, or both of you may be in bad health in a few years due to the stress of campaigning.

Posted by: Justin Perez | March 22, 2007 10:25 PM | Report abuse

As we all sit and analyze the unhappy news
we received today about Elizabeth Edwards and her husband's future campaign agenda, I can't help but feel how negative we have become as a nation.My 22 year old son has recently been diagnosed as bi-polar. This has changed my family's life.He is bravely fighting this sad disease and like Elizabeth continues to fight it gallantly.I only wish the very best for the Edwards and know that God will take care of all of us.Let us try to look at the positive side of our lives not the negative. Our prayers and thoughts are with all people who suffer and don't have the blessings we have been lucky enough to enjoy as Americans.Not one of us know what the next minute will bring.Stay close to God and He will show all of us the way.God Bless America!

Posted by: Kathy | March 22, 2007 9:41 PM | Report abuse

They can both choose their own path for themselves when facing this tough personal time. Perhaps they feel that a personal struggle with cancer is a battle worth fighting; for larger struggle with the Conservative Right a cancer eating away at the bones of American society

After all it's the Republicans and their cronies in the health extortion industry in America that have made it that the average American has to keep working in the face of cancer. That's because Republicans really hate America and it's people and would rather pocket money for themselves than help their fellow citizens. That of course is because often they are mentally ill (look at the drug addict Limbaugh and the sociopathic Coulter and O'Reilly) and struggle to relate to saner humans.

Good luck to John Edwards and Elizabeth in both their struggles. Having a sense of purpose and direction is admirable, it would be nice to see it in the current President who has so badly let down those who supported him.

Posted by: chunkylimey | March 22, 2007 9:22 PM | Report abuse

This is sad, that Elizabeth's cancer has returned. The Edward's family is in my prayers. I encourage you all to pray for the Edward's family, as cancer is such a poision to lives. May the good Lord bless Elizabeth and the whole family. For once folks, politics aside.

Posted by: reason | March 22, 2007 9:07 PM | Report abuse

The Edwards' decision makes total sense to me. They are people dedicated to making the world a better place. Now they have been told that the time they have to do that together may be a lot shorter than they once thought. Mrs. Edwards clearly wants to make sure her life has meaning, and is encouraging her husband to stay in the race. Wouldn't any of us, faced with our own mortality, want the opportunity to influence the debate on moral issues that can shape the lives of millions and literally billions of people?

Posted by: jraff79 | March 22, 2007 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Edwards is running on a platform of representing the interests of ordinary, working Americans. A typical working husband can't quit his job when his wife gets ill. Edward's job is to run for president, and if elected, to serve as president.

Therefore, he is being representative of typical Americans by continuing with his work despite a family crisis. There is a consistency and honesty about his decision to continue his campaign.

Posted by: Florencio Ramos | March 22, 2007 9:01 PM | Report abuse

I have to laugh at the liberal media's coverage of this story. Can you guys be any less skeptical of Democrats? What a joke!

Posted by: Mike | March 22, 2007 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Nobody says to stay home and cry all the time. But for God sakes, do you really need to RUN FOR THE PRESIDENCY??

Your wife and family NEEDS YOU. There are other things you can do too.


I disagree with his decision completely.

Posted by: mack Mann | March 22, 2007 8:46 PM | Report abuse

He is a politician. He has used her cancer to try to get votes. He has instead lost votes from this announcement. At least mine.

Please, your wife is dying, spend the last remaining months or years with her and the kids.

This is not the time to run for president. Sheesh....

Posted by: HMD | March 22, 2007 8:43 PM | Report abuse

I think they should have waited untill after the election if they were going to run whether she had the cancer or not. I feel it am effort to draw votes. Lost mine

Posted by: Charlie | March 22, 2007 8:38 PM | Report abuse

Last year my husband received a stage 4 diagnosis. I was going to quit my job, our oldest daughter said she would move back home and the younger one was ready to drop out of law school. In the midst of our weeping and wailing, my wonderful husband cracked up and said, "Who the hell is going to support all of you! I'm the one with cancer. Live your lives!" My husband responded well to treatment and is back working. The Edwards are doing exactly what they should. They have the gratitude of all of us who have walked in their shoes. Cancer is a disease vast numbers of people are living with.

Posted by: AS | March 22, 2007 8:11 PM | Report abuse

As an Obama supporter with great respect for the Edwardses, I must admit that I have found myself respecting John Edwards and his wife all the more. They are truly wonderful people who care about our country and our world. I would consider it an honor to vote for John Edwards for President, and to see his wife dance with him at the inauguration.

Posted by: JD | March 22, 2007 8:09 PM | Report abuse

"Have the Edwards privately set a timetable to re-evaluate Elizabeth's condition and see whether the campaign continues?"

As anyone who has battled with cancer knows, it is difficult to set any kind of timetable. There are no finite answers. The cancer follows its own course and we do our best with modern medicine to keep up with it. It makes sense that the Edwards' are soldiering on with their lives' ambitions.

Posted by: anonymous | March 22, 2007 8:04 PM | Report abuse

Vinny T and others who have criticised their decision, I would like to ask you something. Have you paid any attention to those who HAVE cancer and posted their opinions? You can postulate and theorize all you want, but you will never know how you'll handle something until you're staring it in the face. They have and made the same courageous decision the Edwards family has. Fight on! How frightening would it be for Mrs. Edwards to have someone like you for a husband? Someone who says "Oh no! You're going to die now!" rather than choosing to offer the hope for a future and a chance to realise your dreams? Make no mistake, in a couple that is truely ONE, they give each other's opinions the equal weight they deserve and see the other's dreams as their own. Why should he deny her that because of your own cynical opinions? There was more than one post here by cancer survivors who have had their cancer go to the bones and have lived for YEARS, yet you seem to state that they have no hope. Why? What gives you or anyone else the right to take that hope from them? To do so would surely be a death sentence.

My grandfather recently passed away from cancer. He was a strong man who fought his entire life and endured daily pain from a construction accident about 25 years ago. He never let it or anything else stop him from doing what he wanted to do and led a full and active life, despite his broken body. But I must sadly say that I can pinpoint the exact time that he gave up hope and stopped fighting the cancer. It was only a matter of weeks later that he died. The doctors told us that with the right attitude and care he could live much longer than he did. I fully believe that, for personal reasons, he made the decision to die rather than fight it out. We supported him in that decision, even though it was hard for us and loosing him still hurts a lot. We would have supported him if he'd chosen otherwise as well. The point is that it was HIS CHOICE and we respected his right as an individual with a mind of his own to make that choice. We tried our best to offer him hope and encouragement but he still made his own decision and we had to respect that because we respect him. This is MRS. EDWARDS' choice. Not yours! She is going to slog it out and remain determined to lead what, for her and her family, is a normal life for as long as she can. How can you or anyone else DARE to question her decision to fight this in her own way? She is aggressively pursuing her options and living her life as she sees fit. Her husband is supporting her in the way that she needs him to right now. By following their dream and not treating her like she is a dead woman with no hope of a future. They are doing this for themselves, their children, and their country. Can you not see the kind of example this sets for the children? The chips are down and things may not be looking too rosy right now, but Mommy is fighting back and Daddy is backing her up by believing in her ability to do so.

For me it is too early to decide who I will vote for, be it DEM, REP, or otherwise. But this lets me know that Mr. and Mrs. Edwards do not give up or give in easily. They get educated and dig in for the long haul. He truely does believe his wife is his equal and has as much right to make decisions as he does. Those are certainly qualities I want in my President and First Lady.

Posted by: Lenali | March 22, 2007 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Sam -- I am a Repub and I wish the Edwards family nothing but the best. Your hate of all things GOP has blinded you. It hasn't occurred to me to look for any ulterior motives. While I can take issue with his solutions, John Edwards is at least focused on the right questions and problems. There is nothing to indicate that he is power hungry -- unlike Hillary -- he appears to be a decent man motivated to seek higher office so that he can do good as he sees it. He has consistently championed the poor, at a significant political cost. It is a sad commentary that at every turn, people try to use the events of the day to further polarize a fractured nation, when we need consensus and unity. The nation's enemies, of which there are many -- certainly do not lack a singleness of vision and resolve. May God bless Mr. and Mrs. Edwards. And BTW, if you have ever been at a dice table, you know that a 25 percent shot comes in all the time. Mrs. Edwards could well survive many of the posters calcultaing her demise and second guessing their motives.

Posted by: RL | March 22, 2007 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Chris-- Boo! you think JE is carrying on the campaign purely because he's politically ambitious? How about because he's completely FED UP like many of us with the mess in Iraq, lack of health insurance for millions of our fellow citizens, and no existing policy for alternative energy.
John believes he can lead us to a better future. I believe he can too. God Bless his wife and their children.

Posted by: marsha h | March 22, 2007 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Apparently the likelihood is that Elizabeth Edwards will die before Election Day and her husband will be forced to drop out, regardless of what the Edwards family may be telling itself. That's what this means.
Apparently, you don't recover from Stage IV cancer, and the likelihood is that she'll be dead in five months.

Posted by: jgg | March 22, 2007 7:38 PM | Report abuse

"a timetable to re-evaluate Elizabeth's condition and see whether the campaign continues"

A timetable only emboldens the cancer!


Posted by: bf | March 22, 2007 7:10 PM | Report abuse

Let's look at this from a different angle. If Laura Bush were diagnosed with terminal breast cancer, would we expect the president to resign. I don't think so. Even if W was diagnosed with cancer, I think we would still expect him to serve out his term as long as he was able and willing. If John Edwards was president at the time of this dagnosis, we wouldn't expect him to resign. At least I don't think so.

No matter what challenges come our way, we still have to live our lives the best way we know how.

Posted by: Ron | March 22, 2007 7:10 PM | Report abuse

Mrs Edward·s desire that her husband continue his campaign is the one we should all respect.It will be a terrible strain but I wish them both well on the difficult paths that face them.

Posted by: campbell | March 22, 2007 6:43 PM | Report abuse

A cancer diagnosis is no longer a death sentence, we dont stop living because of it. We continue to take care of our families and we continue with our professions. What a sad world it would be if everyone who was diagnosed with cancer chose to give up. Shame on anyone who says that John is using this for political gain. He is just being honest and forthcoming with what is going on with his family. Trust me, as a two time cancer survivor and one who has been going through this for nine years, it isnt about sympathy. They are just trying to lead a normal life. Let them go about it with the dignity they exuded today. How very generous of them to share their heartache with us, now we must begin to share our prayers with them.

Posted by: beth | March 22, 2007 6:34 PM | Report abuse

America needs a respectable leader to lead the country. John and Elizabeth Edwards certainly demonstrated that quality. John Edwards definitely earn points for showing the courage and honesty. Of course, to earn my vote, I will need to know more about his campain platform.

Posted by: Mike Le | March 22, 2007 6:20 PM | Report abuse

I personally love everyone who politically analyzes an announcement to death. The reason they kept things "hush hush" is because I am sure they did not want all this analysis when they were dealing with the reality of it themselves. Now they have announced it because it would have eventually leaked and then everyone would criticize them for trying to cover it up.

The fact that he has said he'd "fight on" with his campaign I am sure is in large part due to her support of that. I know that I would not immediately quit my job just because my wife was diagnosed with cancer as that is completely absurd. Thus those who say he should quit and be with her are implying just that, doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Perhaps he can be viewed as putting himself first but put things in perspective as how a normal person would deal with it and also realize that she has input into this and obviously is encouraging him to continue.

Perhaps our country wouldn't be so screwed up if there weren't a million people ready to criticize someone every chance they get.

Posted by: James | March 22, 2007 6:20 PM | Report abuse

My opinion is sincere and valid. - Vinny T.

Your opinion may be sincere, but did you have access to the medical reports, and were you privy to the conversations between Mr. & Mrs. Edwards?

Not likely, so the validiy bit is out the window.

You have him killing her by continuing to run, when you have know idea what the situation is, or what she wants. No wonder you were taken to task.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Knowing them both, if John dropped out, Elizabeth would kill him. She believes in what he's doing. I'm sure if things take a turn for the worse, they will reevaluate, but right now he is doing what SHE wants him to do -- regardless of what he may have said in the past.

Those who would not vote for him because they think this is a cynical ploy 1. do not know these two, and 2. weren't going to vote for him anyway.

My thoughts and prayers are with them as they weather yet another storm in their lives.

Posted by: vmi98mom | March 22, 2007 6:00 PM | Report abuse

'CINCINNATI, Ohio (Reuters) -- Until last year, financial counselors at the Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati spent most of their time teaching Americans how to buy a first home. Now, they're deluged by broken and bereft homeowners facing foreclosure.

"Oh Lord, there is no way we can keep up with these calls," said Kaye Britton, a foreclosure counselor at the downtown nonprofit group that promotes home ownership to minority Americans, among others.

Britton has been helping clients reach the American dream of owning a home since 2002. Handmade wall signs urge would-be buyers to "sweat the small stuff" and note the lender's golden rule: "They have the gold, they make the rules."

Foreclosures were formerly rare, caused mostly by the loss of job, divorce or medical bills.

But when rising interest rates began driving up mortgage payments last year, homeowners started to feel the pain. Phones at credit counselors across the country are now ringing off the hook.

The industrial heartland has been particularly hard-hit. Ohio had the highest number of home foreclosures in 2006, while neighboring Michigan and Indiana -- all sideswiped by the faltering U.S. auto industry -- were close behind.

Housing analysts predict between 1 million and 3 million U.S. homes will be foreclosed upon in 2007. Already a wave of defaults on subprime mortgages held by those with poor credit have caused a crisis in parts of the industry, and some economists believe a recession could result.

"We knew it was going to be bad, but we didn't think it would be this bad," said Britton, echoing many who warned that increasingly exotic mortgage programs -- including those that required no down payment on home purchases -- would come back to haunt home buyers.'

Posted by: the fruits of R deregulation | March 22, 2007 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Ever read the Bible, Vinnie T? Ever heard "Judge not, lest ye be judged"? Other people's life decisions are, quite simply, none of your damned business. On the strength of the Edwards' press conference, I made my second campaign contribution. They are courageous people.

Posted by: ebrke | March 22, 2007 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Really mixed and terrible message. What I took from this was that Edwards presidental campaign is more important than his wife's health. I could be wrong here seeing as that I don't know him personally, but the press confernce seemed WAY to self serving for my taste. A real man would put his family first.

Posted by: mountain man | March 22, 2007 5:56 PM | Report abuse

It is very easy to attack Edwards. He abandoned the fight when Bush/Cheney stole the 2004 election. He let the entire country down. There was no justification for his actions. Kerry knew it, that's why he did not run again. Edwards too should drop out for the benefit of the country and to save himself from further embarrassment.

Posted by: KEVIN SCHMIDT, STERLING VA | March 22, 2007 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Karen:
she's lost a lot of weight because she has Stage IV metastatic cancer! The 5 year- survival rate for this is 20%; it's not a 'chronic disease' and cannot be compared to diabetes or even HIV staved off by anti-retroviral drugs.

Cancer is not a virus, it's the body's own cells growing uncontrollably and the only way to kill those cells is to kill off most of your healthy cells too resulting in death; that is why it's incurable in Stage IV because treating it agressively enough would typically kill the patient.

I'll bet she'd rather have those pounds back.

Posted by: Dr | March 22, 2007 5:51 PM | Report abuse

John and Elizabeth Edwards are remarkable people, the kind of people you want to live next to, the kind of people you want to hang out with, the kind of people you want your kids to know, the kind of people you want as best friends, and the kind of people that make us all better people. John Edwards may never be elected President of the United States and Elizabeth Edwards may never be First Lady but they are and always will be the First Couple and if voters were rational and primaries and elections fair, they would and should be President and First Lady. America truly needs such a remarkable man and woman of such great intelligence, integrity, charm, and compassion to lead this country forward. John and Elizabeth Edwards made a decision today BECAUSE THEY CARE, and we who loved them and follow them will support them, no matter what the future brings, BECAUSE WE CARE about them and about this country.

Posted by: Because We Care | March 22, 2007 5:45 PM | Report abuse

If he were a doctor, would the naysayers have him halt his research for whatever cure he had been tackling in order to spend more time with his ailing wife? I find that highly unlikely.

If I were in her shoes and felt my beloved spouse was the only one who could step up and provide a better future for my children, my loved ones & my friends, I too would have him press on to achieve that goal in hopes he would be able to make things better. By fulfilling her wishes, he is communicating his respect for her as his equal, he is sharing his love for her, and he is showing his young children that marriage truly is a partnership.

Should he be elected President, hopefully he can help us achieve a cure for her & many others that much sooner as well as benefit other Americans by devising other methods to keep their loved ones from dying whether it be via war, environment mishaps, societal ills or being unable to afford decent health care. Regardless, I wish them continued success in their marriage, a high quality of happiness in their remaining time together and the courage to follow their dreams.

Posted by: dani | March 22, 2007 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Elizabeth says she feels fine, and that's great..hope it lasts. She certainly looks good -- she's lost a lot of weight and lightened her hair..she looks better now than she did the last time she was on the campaign trail. I add my prayers to many others who are praying for her health.

Posted by: Karen | March 22, 2007 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Elizabeth Edwards stated quite clearly why they held a press conference: to demonstrate that she is feeling fit and has lots of energy. That may change in the months ahead, but, as others have pointed out, nobody knows what tomorrow will bring. Elizabeth Edwards may live in reasonably good health for years to come. Certainly, she is well aware of what she needs to do to get good treatment and is highly motivated to do it.

Many formerly deadly diseases--most obviously AIDS--have been turned into chronic illnesses; many HIV+ people lead very active, constructive lives. I hope Elizabeth Edwards will have such a course.

They are thoughtful people who are quite obviously devoted to each other and their children. I'm sure this decision wasn't made lightly, and I think we should honor their choice.

Posted by: THS | March 22, 2007 5:36 PM | Report abuse

my wife would want me to follow my star no matter hoe near or how far bless you elizabeth my prayers are with you you taught me real heart
now lets get rid of supeano dogging bums in the white house and stop the world from hating us and cut off haliburtons claim on our tax dollars make cheney no richer and self driving george out.

Posted by: ededdington | March 22, 2007 5:31 PM | Report abuse

John Edwards is far and away the best candidate in this race; he is the only one who is really speaking thoughtfully, knowledgeably, and decisively about the issues that matter in this country. His wife, who's also an incredible person, told him she doesn't want him to stop his campaign--and for thirty years they have shared a close, supportive marriage. Why should we judge them for their decision? It's theirs to make, and it will serve only to make both of them more committed to those in need. Thank you, John Edwards, and THANK YOU, ELIZABETH, for your example of courage at a time when your country needs you.

Posted by: Nora | March 22, 2007 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Wow, look at all the attacks on my opinion. You guys should be ashamed of yourselves. My opinion is sincere and valid. I am not a thug. No I am not a Republican or Democrat.

The whole thing just smells bad here.


Why did he ALREADY SAY (as quoted above):


"He has previously said that the only thing that could keep him out of the 2008 race was Elizabeth's health. So, now that her health problems have returned, why wouldn't he drop out?"

John Edwards blew his chance to do the humanly CORRECT thing here.


For me, It is too late now. Her health report could not get any worse than this. She has terminal cancer that has already spread to her bones.


Get Real.


Two SMALL children.


He had the chance to do the correct thing.


Now it is too late. He should know better.

John Edwards blew it!

Posted by: Vinny T. | March 22, 2007 5:20 PM | Report abuse

As someone who now has 3 friends who have been given this dreaded diagnosis - I know they live day to day with just this worry and nightmare.

I care not to comment on his/her political rode to or from the Whitehouse.

I will say another prayer for another woman who has to go through this horrible disease. Her children, her parents, her husband and now the country will watch her decline.

It's to bad our healthcare can not view breast cancer as an epidemic - This is an epidemic! Go to any of the breast cancer websites and read how many women will succumb to this disease.

If this disease were hitting children, men, famous athletes our country would find a way to eradicate it!!
Its time to start.

Posted by: edra | March 22, 2007 5:14 PM | Report abuse

If I had cancer and my husband announced he was quitting his job to stay home with me, I would be terrified. The message that sends to me is that I'm sooo terminal life can't go on as before. John and Elizabeth are doing the right thing--assuming that her cancer can be successfully confined and that she will live a long and productive life. New meds and treatments appear all the time. Did you read an earlier post about the woman whose breast cancer metastisized to her bone twelve years ago? She is still fine.

Posted by: Ellen | March 22, 2007 5:12 PM | Report abuse

You know what? The LAST thing I would want if I were diagnosed with a potentially terminal illness is for my loved ones to put their lives on hold just to stand around and watch me die. If there was a chance that my family could see their dreams realized, and that I could be around to witness it, then we move forward. All of you who think that the Edwards family should put their lives on hold because of a diagnosis need to be reminded that Mrs. Edwards is indeed still alive. And those of you who think that it's all a political ploy, save your pennies and buy a soul.

Posted by: Beatrice | March 22, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

After watching my mother and sister, the latter with breast cancer, succumb to cancer after heroic, challenging, yet cheerful, battles, here's the fact Jack about the Edwardses:
They are making what they see as their best decision in a very bad situation. Don't judge. Leave them alone. Wish them well. They'll need it.

Posted by: Realbigal | March 22, 2007 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Elizabeth and John are the two most courageous people I know. Neither ones are quitters; and frankly hell would freeze over before Elizabeth would want John to quit this race. The truth is quite simple. This Country is in a very dangerous situation and the Country needs John Edwards. Elizabeth and John are making a tremendous personal sacrifice because they love this Country. They are heroes.

Posted by: Doug Abrams | March 22, 2007 4:47 PM | Report abuse

What a terrible day for that family! If my wife told me to continue, I would think that she probably meant it but would not be able to live with myself as I zig-zagged across the country, spending time with many people other than her. Best wishes to her. On another and pessimistic note: How can he possibly think that this is going to help him win???

Posted by: Phil | March 22, 2007 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Regarding terrorists arrested by police: YES, YOU STOP TERRORISTS BY POLICE WORK. By more secure borders, airports, and seaports. By the FBI, CIA, and Interpol. If necessary by the US Special Forces by hit-and-run raids on foreign camps. Not by invasions. [This is tangental to the Edwards future, God bless them, but it is breaking news.]

Posted by: goat909295 | March 22, 2007 4:33 PM | Report abuse

elizabeth edwards said she wanted him to continue to run in the press conference today. why speculate that she's the one who told him to do it? she did. if you'd watched it, you would've seen her say it, how it was one of the first things they talked about after receiving final results.

Posted by: seriously | March 22, 2007 4:27 PM | Report abuse

God bless the Edwards family. Won't it be a wonderful day when fighting cancer will be a non-issue. Keep up the good work on the campaign trail, offering America some real answers to our problems at home and abroad. As a Southern Democrat, I see Mr. Edwards as being the only "electable" candidate in the party. It'd sure be a shame if they were to drop out of the race now, before the first vote has been cast. My prayers are with you.

Posted by: Richard L Lewis | March 22, 2007 4:26 PM | Report abuse

What we "know" is that most decent men would put their egos aside and stay with their wives during what is essentially horrible news. Running for president is incredibly staggering and nonstop work;
50 states, raising $100 million just to be competitive....That's real supportive & nurturing to Mrs. Edwards, I'm sure. She seems like a decent woman & probably told him to forge ahead. His "presidential" thinking was real clear and he said "OK, honey." Nice judgement, Mr. "Me-First!"

Posted by: Roger | March 22, 2007 4:24 PM | Report abuse

This news is heartbreaking. I cannot imagine how anyone in the position John Edwards is in would even want to continue on with his compaign under these circumstances. It has to be grueling at best to travel all over and sacrifice rest and proper nutrition, hard enough when one is well. I wonder as time goes on if they will re-evaluate this decision. I would think time with the family now would be the most important thing for them both, esp. having 2 young children, while she is still able. How can he possibly give 100% focus to the campaign and possible nomination with this on his mind? Maybe the shock of all this has not yet settled in and they will reconsider their decision. My heart goes out to them.

Posted by: Andrea | March 22, 2007 4:21 PM | Report abuse

John and Elizabeth Edwards are to be commended for going on with their lives as usual. I admire their strength and determination. No one knows what the future holds. All of us need to make a commitment to live life to the fullest. What an example John and Elizabeth are setting for all of us!

Posted by: Sarahs mom | March 22, 2007 4:16 PM | Report abuse

'Normalizing' an attack on the rule of law: That Bush officials interfered with the administration of justice is no longer in doubt - Josh Marshall: "It's yet another example of how far this White House has gone in normalizing behavior that we've been raised to associate with third-world countries where democracy has never successfully taken root and the rule of law is unknown.

At most points in our history the idea that an Attorney General could stay in office after having overseen such an effort would be unthinkable. The most telling part of this episode is that they're not even really denying the wrongdoing. They're ignoring the point or at least pleading 'no contest' and saying it's okay."

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I really think it is bad form for John Edwards to continue to run with his wife' health as it is. It seems to me that he would want spend his time with his wife and family not away missing what could be a limited time. I like ambition but ambition at the expense of your family and particularly at his wife' health is just a poor decision. I think he will regret this choice.

Posted by: Victoria | March 22, 2007 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Melissa and Amanda who???

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 4:06 PM | Report abuse

btw, the terrorists were from pakistan -- the largest and most dangerous incubator of terrorism in the world. they just tested a nuclear missle. d'ya think our president will do anything about it? nah... must be about time for him to take another vacation, isn't it?

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Here's how you catch terrorists -- police work. Just like we did with Timothy McVeigh. They are murderers just every other murderer.

LONDON, England (CNN) -- Three men have been arrested in connection with the July 7, 2005, bomb attacks on the London transport network, British police said in a statement.

Two men, aged 23 and 30, were held at Manchester airport in northern England shortly before 1 p.m. GMT on Thursday as they were due to catch a flight to Pakistan, New Scotland Yard said.

A third man, aged 26, was arrested hours later at a house in the nearby city of Leeds. Police were searching five addresses in the Leeds area as well as a flat and business premises in east London, the statement said.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Up front: I have been supporting John Edwards in this campaign and today, after learning of the announcement, I support him and his wife (I'm certain she told him to go forward). I have gone on-line and donated a third time in this campaign cycle.

I am a registered Democrat,and he's my choice. I don't have lots of money, but I gave the highest I've given to him today as an expression of even more support for him and for his courageous wife and children.

I've experienced loved ones having cancer--it is prevalent in my family--most having died from it. It is important to focus on what one wants to accomplish, as an individual and as a member of a family.

Each of my parents, when they had terminal diagnoses, several years apart told me it was important to go on with what I believed in, knowing that I would still be there for them when they needed me to be there, and I was. They gave me the courage to go on--a "peace that passeth understanding."

Posted by: aroc | March 22, 2007 4:03 PM | Report abuse

A lot of people have sacrificed their lives for this country -- and left their children orphans. A lot of them are doing in the Occupation. Should they all just stay home and put their kids first?

what is wrong wiht you people? Why do you hate America?

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Here's my take on why he's not ending his race for president...to pull out would be an admission that the cancer has won. I believe that if Elizabeth wanted her husband to stay home with her, he would not be running today. I believe that she feels strongly in the value of his campaign and approaches her future with optimism.

That they view this as something that will be with her forever, rather than cured, is an interesting way to put it.

Elizabeth Edwards' insistence on recognizing the help and support she has received through difficult times has been wonderful. To ask for help can sometimes be the most difficult thing. She is a powerful example of grace and strength.

Kudos to this couple. I wish them the very best.

Posted by: Anne W. | March 22, 2007 3:54 PM | Report abuse

My thoughts are that, initially at least, this will appeal to some and be a negative to others. We can see that just here on this blog as we read down through the comments.

However, at some point Mrs. Edwards will definitively state that John Edwards offered to drop out of the campaign and she insisted against it. It is pretty much the only explanation unless we assume that their marriage is a complete sham. It is impossible to fake being supportive of John Edwards continuing his campaign if you are Mrs. Edwards. If she really isn't 100% supportive then it will come out.

If she is, however, then it isn't up to anyone in the world to question it. If SHE gave the go ahead for him to run for president then nobody should be allowed to overrule her. She is the one struggling with cancer. Not Mr. Edwards, not most of the American electorate and, hopefully at least, nobody on this blog.

Posted by: J. Crozier | March 22, 2007 3:51 PM | Report abuse

The Edwards campaign will never rebound from this tragic decision. Kudos to his wife and her desire for him to "Stay the Course". But, remember John, SHE'S the most important person in your world! Stop now and regain the respect you've so quickly lost.

Posted by: N in CC | March 22, 2007 3:48 PM | Report abuse

The top of the Edwards' priority list should be their CHILDREN! The decision to run is clearly very selfish on his part, as well as his wife's. If Mrs. Edwards' condition worsens dramatically, not only will the kids (two of whom are very young) be dealing with that trauma, but they'll also have a father who won't be able to focus on their needs. I think this decision shows his true character--voters beware!

Posted by: MAF | March 22, 2007 3:46 PM | Report abuse

As long as we are on a health topic why has there been no speculation that perhaps a major reason that John McCain is doing so poorly in the polls has to do with how he looks. Seeing him campaigning he looks old,tired and puffy. Maybe the electorate is shying away because of this.

Posted by: Herbert Kay | March 22, 2007 3:40 PM | Report abuse

What is the problem with addressing the issue through a press conference? I think it was an excellent idea. They explained the facts of her condition in a straightforward manner, and their decision to continue with the campaign. What's wrong with that? Elizabeth Edwards is a feisty, energetic, courageous, and kind woman. She would not have wanted to to go mope over her disease. So, they'll continue to what they are doing. And if cicumstances change, they'll adjust accordingly. Edwards will be with her when she needs him, and, should her condition deteriorate, he'll drop out of the race. This is a couple who knows where their priorities are: family first. Kudos to them.

Posted by: Devil's Advocate | March 22, 2007 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Well, Elizabeth and John Edwards took an expenssive option, very delicate and full of courage. To be true, i personally wish them best of lucky.

Posted by: Nel Masha | March 22, 2007 3:35 PM | Report abuse

I applaud John Edwards. Many will claim this is a political sympathy ploy. I believe that he is trying to be upfront and honest.

Being on the campaign trail opens your life up to the public. It is pro-active to announce the diagnosis. If Edwards had not announced it and it became public, which it would, people would speculate what he was hiding. The American public will damn him either way.

It is unfortunate as he is one of the few running for President who is not "owned" by someone. He has my vote and his family has my prayers.

Posted by: Tobi | March 22, 2007 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Well, Elizabeth and John Edwards too an expenssive option, very delicate and full of courage. To be true, i personally wish them best of lucky.

Posted by: Nel Masha | March 22, 2007 3:33 PM | Report abuse

1.Reason to disclose-to put supporters on notice that his availabilty wil be affected by his wife's condition so please understand.2.Would anyone criticize a non-candidate for returning to work? Should the average Joe or even average Joe Millionaire stop their career entirely? I think most reasonable would say no. So why should Edwards?

Posted by: JLACORTE | March 22, 2007 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Having lost four people in my family to cancer, I can speak from the heart. These are two brave determined people. This is his chance and she knows it. It is more than likely Elizabeth who wants John to continue his campaign. To those cynical people that state he is doing this for political reasons - you guys have a strange outlook on life. He is doing this for his wife - probably nothing would maker her happier and proud than if he were to go all the way and win! Cancer be damned.

Posted by: Caregiver | March 22, 2007 3:30 PM | Report abuse

It's a very tough situation and I see valid points among many bloggers with contrasting views. I suppose the thing I'm leaning towards is that this is a private matter (the decision to continue his campaign) and no one should be questioning Mr. Edwards either way, any more than we should be questioning Mrs. Edwards about her preferred choice of treatment options.
I suggest that we stop acting as judges, take a deep breath and concentrate our focus on what the candidates have to say about their visions for America.

Any one of us, including the candidates themselves, could drop dead tomorrow. No one can predict the future for anyone. So can't we live in the moment, let the Edwards family have some peace to deal with this difficult news and worry about what comes next, when and if it happens!?

America has vitally important decisions to make about the future, and we Americans have to be ready to make those decisions by electing someone who will repair America -- a difficult task after the utterly devastating acts by George Bush and his administration, which have impacted not only upon the future of our country, but also the very existence of life on earth for all creatures.

This is serious business and serious thought has to go into it. We've got to cut out the focus on individual's personal lives and concentrate on what's good for the planet. We Americans allow ourselves to be so readily distracted from the real issues of importance, while the evil forces of corrupttion and personal take such deep root that there may already be no way out of the mess that we're all in.

For example, the attacks on former Pres. Clinton, made us the laughing stock of the entire planet. Having lived in a variety of countries and travelled to many more, I can safely say that we are both feared and at the same time, ridculed for our incompetence and short-sightedness. Almost everyone I've talked with around the world has asked the same basic question -- How on earth could America have elected such a stupid person to be their president? My answer to them is quite simple -- they didn't! Let's show them that we're not as stupid as they think. Let's get rid of the dumb, shortsighted and corrupt politicians and replace them with bright, compassionate and passionate people who really want to do genuine good, not just for themselves and their cronies, but for all of humanity.
-Howard F

Posted by: Howard F | March 22, 2007 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Wow, Vinney T. were are you coming from!! JE and his wife are doing exactly what needs to be done. They are taken the bull by the horns and marching on.. This reminds me of a song that has a line, "live like your dieing". I'm sure Mrs.E. has made her choice and is going to live with every last breath of her life no matter what. My prayers are with both..

Posted by: MR.G. | March 22, 2007 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Elizabeth Edwards has an wonderful outlook and this is not a death sentence. I was diagnosed 12 years ago with breast cancer and 1 year later it matasized to my bones. I am on chemo for maintenance, just like you would do for diabetes or any chronic illness. When one chemo drug stops working, my oncologist puts me on another chemo drug. I feel fine and lead a normal life, except for my treatments. Elizabeth should keep that great attitude she has and prayers work wonders.

Posted by: Gail Carlson | March 22, 2007 3:26 PM | Report abuse

What an amazing moment of courage, dignity and grace. After everything is said and done, these people believe they can make the world a better place. For all of our sakes, I hope John and Elizabeth Edwards stay and fight for what they believe in.

Posted by: Carey | March 22, 2007 3:26 PM | Report abuse

No matter how he handled it, repugs would trash him. What do you expect? Look at the savagery and hatred in some of these posts -- pigs.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Yesterday, while getting my regular scheduled dose of chemotherapy for advanced colon cancer, the nurse brought in a small vase filled with just beginning to bloom daffodils. The vase was a gift of the American Cancer Society and it was marked "Hope blooms". And so should the Edwards' family.

I recurred in 1999, and have had numerous surgeries, radiation treatments, and experimental chemos ever since. The newest drugs that I'm on include Xeloda and Avastin, drugs that were'nt available a few short years ago. My oncologists call me a living miracle for reacting in the most positive way to the treatments. Who is to say that new drugs now in the experimental stage won't help or even cure Elizabeth Edwards? Anybody who even suggests that is being cruel and narrow-minded.

Cheer up, Elizabeth, and remember that "Hope blooms".

Posted by: Milt Schonberger | March 22, 2007 3:24 PM | Report abuse

To those asking why bring it up, I would posit the following: if he tried to hide it, when it hit the news (and it would), it might have been used against him, much as a deal was made (or attempted to be made, I don't think it was too successful) of the fact that Cheney's daughter is gay, despite his party largely being against gay marriage. Politicians, whether they like it or not, end up checking their privacy, and that of their families, at the door (it's fact, like it or not).

They may as well acknowledge this and move on and show Elizabeth smiling and looking supportive of this choice than have it come up as "Oh my God you monster how could you cover up your poor wife's suffering while you're off brown-nosing, you jerk!" whether or not that was intent in not telling.

Some reporter or other will ask him this at some point, probably, but until we get an answer from him that's my personal thought on it.

Posted by: Theory on Why Bring it Up? | March 22, 2007 3:22 PM | Report abuse


Yesterday, while getting my regular scheduled dose of chemotherapy for advanced colon cancer, the nurse brought in a small vase filled with just beginning to bloom daffodils. The vase was a gift of the American Cancer Society and it was marked "Hope blooms". And so should the Edwards' family.

I recurred in 1999, and have had numerous surgeries, radiation treatments, and experimental chemos ever since. The newest drugs that I'm on include Xeloda and Avastin, drugs that were'nt available a few short years ago. My oncologists call me a living miracle for reacting in the most positive way to the treatments. Who is to say that new drugs now in the experimental stage won't help or even cure Elizabeth Edwards? Anybody who even suggests that is being cruel and narrow-minded.

Cheer up, Elizabeth, and remember that "Hope blooms".

Posted by: Milt .S. | March 22, 2007 3:22 PM | Report abuse

People are entitled to their opinion Sam, and when you choose to heir your personal life so publically you can expect that people will react to it. I don't think it makes you a thug to be cynnical about Edwards' motivation.

Posted by: TG | March 22, 2007 3:20 PM | Report abuse

JimD - check out the other topic on Edwards if you want some disrespectful and incredibly insensitive comments.

Posted by: Aussie view | March 22, 2007 3:19 PM | Report abuse

What else would he do besides continue his campaign? If I got cancer my husband wouldn't stop working. Life goes on. The last thing I would want would be for everything around me to stop. That would mean that it was the end. Giving up the campaign would be giving up everything those two have been working towards for many years.

I am deeply sorry to hear that Elizabeth had a relapse and will pray for her comfort.

Posted by: Rebecca | March 22, 2007 3:19 PM | Report abuse

If he was Newt Ginrich, it'd be time to pack up and leave Elizabeth for a younger woman...

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Mark - regarding Gore's current rating. When you say unrealistic do you mean he should be higher?

Posted by: Aussie view | March 22, 2007 3:16 PM | Report abuse

And why should they not have a press conference, and talk about it openly, and get it out there and face it? Isn't that better than the secrecy and deceit we're accustomed to?

It's going to get out there no matter what. Better it be in the sunshine of a press conference than a dark sewer like Drudge.

Posted by: drindl | March 22, 2007 3:15 PM | Report abuse

I am disappointed that political ambition has trumped his family. If it were just the two of them, with grown children, I might feel differently. But they have two young children who will likely lose their mother. Their father should spend as much time with all of them as he can. He can contribute to the public dialogue and use his wealth in constructive ways. He doesn't need to be the President.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 3:14 PM | Report abuse

I can only guess that the thugs here who criticized Edwards are republicans. In any case they are disgusting. Are you people human? Have you become so cynical that you can longer believe in human decency, in hope, in dreams?

I realize that having witnessed 6 years in office of some of the most deplorable, cynical, evil people who ever lived might have had some effect, but can't you believe it is possible that some people actually believe in this country's future, and want to do something qbout it?

It's called altruism. They're just two people and they may feel that they have a bigger cause that transcends their personal tragedy, and they are willing to sacrifice for that.

Or do we no longer believe in ANYTHING IN America?

Posted by: Sam | March 22, 2007 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Let me first say that the news of this cancer saddens me. I hope and pray for the health of Mrs. Edwards.

On the flip side, I find there to be something incredibly distasteful about the whole affair. I agree with the poster that says why hold a press conference to announce this thing. If it wasn't designed to curry sympathy or favor, why not do a back channel release type thing. I don't get it and I think on a lot of levels that people will not view John Edwards with sympathy but as a guy that won't put his ambitions on hold to be with his sick wife. That's my reaction for what it is worth.

And it may be ghoulish, as someone noted, for us to even be discussing this but remember, we are discussing it because the Edwards decided to announce it in the most public of ways.

Posted by: TG | March 22, 2007 3:09 PM | Report abuse

The Edwards campaign is once again showing guts. To those questioning Edwards' commitment to his wife and kids, I wonder if those same questions will be asked regarding Rudy Guliani, Newt Gingrich, or John McCain. Edwards is a good man. People can disagree with his policies, but there is no evidence whatsoever to question his motivations. Shame on anybody who disparages this man or his campaign because they question his dedication to his own family.

Posted by: Edwards has guts | March 22, 2007 3:09 PM | Report abuse

I do not know how she feels about her condition but if they see that he should go on with his political life then is certainly what he should do I feel that it is their life and no one has the right to tell them what to do. God bless them.

Posted by: amy g. in Ark. | March 22, 2007 3:05 PM | Report abuse

I do not know how she feels about her condition but if they see that he should go on with his political life then is certainly what he should do I feel that it is their life and no one has the right to tell them what to do. God bless them.

Posted by: amy in ark. | March 22, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Vinny T is right on. I fully agree with his comment. John Edwards should have said that going on is what his wife wanted to do. But then, HE should have done the right thing, by putting his own political aspirations on hold to be with his wife and their three children..

My repect would have been much greater for him in the end too.

Posted by: Mack Mann | March 22, 2007 2:56 PM | Report abuse

These profhets know it all!

Posted by: swells | March 22, 2007 2:56 PM | Report abuse

why even bring it up? its nobodys business and doesnt affect any of the issues of his running or not. why bring it up????

Posted by: catherine wilson | March 22, 2007 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Vinny T's cynical comments reveal a deep lack of understanding. For many patients of serious diagnoses, the best thing they can do for both their mental and physical well-being is to keep doing what they've been doing. To quit and retreat to the hospital or the home can not only kill one's spirits, but also have a negative psychological effect on one's will and ability to heal. I agree with everyone who has thus far stated that Elizabeth Edwards (and not John) very likely made the decision that she wanted to soldier on. Vinny T's cynicism disrespects that brave and justifiable decision.

Posted by: tbf | March 22, 2007 2:50 PM | Report abuse

I am glad to see that, for the most part, the posts on this subject have been respectful and measured. I do think it is a little goulish to be discussing the politics of the situation but, of course, it will have a political effect.

Posted by: JimD in FL | March 22, 2007 2:49 PM | Report abuse

This calls to mind all the folks who said Dick Cheney, he of the four heart attacks, would likely drop dead in office within six months of assuming the vice-presidency. And he will likely outlast us all!
The fact is we had a 3-term president with polio and another with Addison's disease and another who was, in retrospect, probably in the earliest stage of Alzheimer's. Lincoln's wife was mentally ill, and other presidents have been widowed while in office. Mrs. Edwards could get worse, or remain the same for 20 years. She has chosen to live her life as planned rather than curl up and obsess over when she might die.

Posted by: mo-lama | March 22, 2007 2:42 PM | Report abuse

I suppose they figure they might as well keep working on the campaign while she's still feeling good. Anyone watching her today can see she has plenty of energy and wants to go on. I can see where it might even be therapeutic to keep working and not sit home worrying about my health and things that I couldn't change. My best wishes to the Edwards family.

Posted by: Charity | March 22, 2007 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Kudos to Chris Cillizza for his careful, respectful examination of the political ramifications of this terrible news. I hope that other journalists and pundits will follow your lead, but fear they will not.

I wish Mr. and Mrs. Edwards all the best. Let us respect her choice: the campaign goes on. I too suspect that having the campaign end would, for her, perhaps be the least attractive option. She said repeatedly in the press conference that the last thing she wanted to do was sit around and feel sorry for herself. Better to pursue one's dreams and hopes, even in the face of crushing news like this sad prognosis must surely be.

As Americans, please let us judge her husband on the strength of his plans for our great nation, not our suspicions of ulterior motives and sinister machinations. The man and his wife have made their choice; now it is incumbent upon the voting public to respect it.

I had resolved to vote for Edwards before today's news. My sense was that for all the hue and cry over Clinton and Obama, Edwards is the only Democrat talking substance. Now, in light of the incredibly tender warmth and naked humanity we saw today, my commitment to the man and his ideals is redoubled.

Posted by: Will in Philadelphia | March 22, 2007 2:37 PM | Report abuse

I would suspect that Elizabeth and John Edwards are in a state of denial caused by the shock of the diagnosis. The miserable part of breast cancer (I've had it twice) is that the disease itself doesn't hurt, at least until the final stages. But comparing diabetes to Stage 4 cancer that has spread to the bone tells me that they haven't fully grasped what's going on. They desperately need to feel in control of something they understand, and they understand politics and campaigning, so they're sticking with it.

Don't get me wrong -- I'm not being critical as much as I think they're a) trying to put a brave front on things and b) hoping for miracles. They're going to have to reevaluate things at some point -- even if John Edwards won the nomination and the election, the odds are not in favor of Elizabeth surviving his first term.

I hope I'm wrong about all of this. I wish them nothing but the best.

Posted by: Pam Pellegrene | March 22, 2007 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Best wishes to Elizabeth Edwards and her husband.

Meanwhile, on the political futures trading site www.intrade.com, contracts for the probability of an Edwards nomination dropped 1.6 points today to 7.2% (they were as high as 19% about a month ago before the blogger flap). Hillary is currently trading at 46% and Obama 30%. Gore is still floating along at an unrealistic (IMO) 12%.

Posted by: Mark | March 22, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse

From Time:

"He clearly meant the announcement to be inspiring, but there is also something discomfiting about that statement. Even more discomfiting was Edwards' claim that by soldiering on while his wife has incurable cancer, he would be proving that he could deal with the pressures of being president. I wonder how voters will react to that sentiment."


"It is certainly true that with effective treatment, Elizabeth Edwards could live many years. But it is also true that even the best treatment isn't always effective, and that bone cancer is particularly lethal. Edwards' supporters, and surely many average Americans, have to be wondering at what point the candidate will decide that his duties as husband and father to three children, including a 6 and 8 year old, trump his duty to his country and the cause of winning the White House.

**** Bad move by John Edwards.

Posted by: vt | March 22, 2007 2:35 PM | Report abuse

This is dreadfully sad news. I always thought Elizabeth Edwards would make a better President than her husband. She's fabulous.

Posted by: Progressive | March 22, 2007 2:28 PM | Report abuse

"This just looks BAD for John Edwards from my prespective. Cancer in the bones is terminal cancer. She will die from this, and probably not very long. Cancer from the breast to the bones is as BAD as it gets today."

I look forward to learning about your credentials as an oncologist. Dr. Bernadine Healy, former head of NIH and an occasional commentator on MSNBC, said this AM that many forms of cancer, including this one, have been converted into chronic illnesses, much as AIDS has been.

But still, do let us know the basis for your opinions.

Posted by: THS | March 22, 2007 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Why not take them at their word? Their doctor said that, although recurrence is obviously serious, this next round of treatment is not likely to have the same deleterious effect on her energy and ability to live a demanding life as the previous treatment.

She said that, if the prospect had been different--that is, that her treatment were likely to be seriously debilitating or her prognosis was more threatening--he'd have abandoned his campaign.

Presumably, like the rest of us, they will work with what they have, evaluating the data as they go along. If her health worsens, they'll likely make a new decision about the best thing to do then.

Posted by: THS | March 22, 2007 2:19 PM | Report abuse

This just looks BAD for John Edwards from my prespective. Cancer in the bones is terminal cancer. She will die from this, and probably not very long. Cancer from the breast to the bones is as BAD as it gets today.

He SAYS out of the one side of his mouth he will put his wife's health first before his own personal ambition. Well, now he can prove just that. But instead, he says, Full Speed Ahead.

His "full speed ahead" will put her in an even earlier grave. The stress of a Presidential Campaign will hurt her health, not help it. You can count on that. She needs to rest, she needs his attention. For God's sakes, she is a dying woman here. By putting off his run to be with his dying wife, he gains much, much more respect from me.


However, the opposite is the reality. FULL SPEED AHEAD!


I have already seen enough from this guy.


HE JUST LOST MY VOTE!

Posted by: Vinny T. | March 22, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

I think you can't underestimate the ability of a politician to capitalize on whatever comes his/her way.

First and foremost this fellow is a lawyer. Right there you know how much to trust him.

Why even bring this up at all? If it's not going to make a difference.

Posted by: AnnR | March 22, 2007 2:16 PM | Report abuse

I expect this decision to be questioned by the cocktail weenie crowd and the Coulters and Limbaughs.

But so what? When have they been right on anything?

Best wishes to John and Elizabeth Edwards. Cancer is not a death sentence, and I admire them for fighting.

Posted by: annb | March 22, 2007 2:15 PM | Report abuse

I bet you Elizabeth told him he couldn't quit. She is a tough southern woman and the one thing she probably couldn't stand, that would make her give up is if she thought she caused the end of her family's attempt to make it to the white house and do some good.

I'm probably not an Edwards guy, but I wish them all the best and hope that she gets many happy years.

Posted by: DCAustinite | March 22, 2007 2:11 PM | Report abuse

One possibility as to why he is continuing the campaign, despite his previous statements about what he'd do if his wife again became ill - perhaps Ms. Edwards told Sen. Edwards she didn't want him to suspend or end his campaign. Nobody can predict how someone will respond when a previously hypothetical situation becomes real.

Above all else, prayers and thoughts to the Edwards family.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 22, 2007 2:10 PM | Report abuse

I know its selfish of me, but THANK GOD. John and Elizabeth Edwards are two of the most genuinely decent people in this country and I know how hard this must be for them. But, if we have any chance of surviving as a nation at all, it lays with John Edwards as the next Presdient of the United States. Everyone else is so wedded to the globalization pig trough, that we don't stand a chance. WE ARE,AS OF THIS MINUTE, MORE THAN 5 TRILLION DOLLARS IN DEBT. This is double the entire federal budget. It is equal to the budgets of every state and municipality and the federal budget all combined! And the only thing propping up this rotten house of cards is billions and bilions of dollars in foreign investments and foreign ownership of our debt. The international bond market switched from the dollar to the Euro and there is a movement for the price of crude to movre away from the dollar. That has started a rush of monry out of this country. Coupped with the outsourcing, replacing American workers with foreign workers in this country, corporate corruption and movements to relocate out of U.S. juristiction, and the protitution of our politcians for corporate money, we are in very serious trouble. From what I hear, the ONLY politcian with an inkling of this and a plan to deal with it, is John Edwards. If you love this country, if you have a sense of self survival even, or a sense of caring about your childrens future, then you will pray for John and Elizabeth Edwards and you will work day and night to see that he is elected.

Posted by: MikeB | March 22, 2007 2:07 PM | Report abuse

None of us knows what tomorrow brings, and I thought of this as I, too, wondered about various "what ifs." Kudos for their being willing to live in the only moment any of us is ever given for life.

Posted by: kathyR | March 22, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Chris,
These are excellent points, raised in a sensitive manner. I suspect the fundraising equation is what will push Edwards into the vice-presidential category again.

Posted by: Bristol reader | March 22, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

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