Ten words I thought I would never write
by desmoinesdem, Sun Aug 10, 2008 at 10:30:41 PM EDT
I am glad John Edwards is not the Democratic nominee.
A few more thoughts on this story are after the jump.
I will keep this short, because you have more important things to read. But since I started writing on the front page here as part of Jerome's "candidate blogger" experiment, and I repeatedly advocated for Edwards as the most electable candidate (e.g. here, here, and here), I want to make a few points.
In theory, my fellow pro-Edwards front-pager David Mizner is right that the sex lives of politicians are none of our business.
But in reality, politicians need to acknowledge the rules of the game, however unfair they may be.
While I still believe in the causes Edwards championed, I see no way that this affair could have been kept secret during a long campaign. If it was important to John and Elizabeth Edwards to prevent this media circus from happening, then he should have declined to run for president. Alternatively, he should have found some way of making this story old news.
It appears that Edwards had no game plan other than to hope that Rielle Hunter wouldn't tell anyone and/or that journalists would not pursue the story as long as he denied the rumors.
As a political observer, I find that difficult to understand. As a precinct captain, I feel embarrassed to have unwittingly misled people.
Countless times I told potential caucus-goers that it would be less risky to nominate Edwards, because he's been under intense national scrutiny since 2004. Or in the words of another precinct captain I know, who used this line many times, "He's been in the spotlight for years, and the worst they can say about him is he has a big house and paid too much for a haircut."
Now I realize that the whole time, Edwards was hiding a story that would have reinforced the most devastating narrative about him.
To me, that is more disappointing than the fact that he didn't win Iowa or the nomination.
Further reflections can be found at Bleeding Heartland.