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Monday, June 6, 2011

John Edwards: no surprise

I told you so about John Edwards.

It's not fun to see anyone indicted for multiple felonies, particularly someone with a career in public service. I grieve for his children -- by both women.

However, I had a bad feeling about Edwards when he came on the scene in 1998. We Democrats in North Carolina were desparate for a competent candidate with no baggage to run for the US Senate. He ran, he won, and we were delighted to have a blue body -- even an unknown one -- in the seat. But without completing what would be an utterly undistinguished term, he announced candidacy for President.

My friends, that's the same excessive testosterone that fueled his "I win, you lose" legal career. Thus I wasn't surprised when his testosterone found another outlet, literally, in Rielle Hunter.

Testosterone aside, by any reckoning Edwards was profoundly unqualified to be President or even Vice-President -- leading me to question whether John Kerry had adequate powers of judgment himself. But a lack of qualifications doesn't tell the whole story about Edwards. His behavior especially after the impregnation clearly indicates that he does not have the right stuff, as Tom Wolfe would put it, to be President.

I concede that Obama was marginally qualified to be President. However, I believe Obama has the right stuff. Any doubts were erased by the assassination of Osama Bin Laden. Also I am reasonably certain that Obama knew what he didn't know upon entering the White House. Edwards has no such self-assessment ability. His ego is driven by conquests in court, in politics, and in bed.

Will Edwards be convicted? 50-50. Persuading a jury of all the necessary elements of the crimes beyond a reasonable doubt will be tough. He has a brilliant defense team, and if he elects to testify we can expect a masterful performance. The prosecution? Last time out, the DOJ's Public Integrity Section blew the Ted Stevens case.

Acquittal won't change my opinion of Edwards, however. Thank God for the National Enquirer. And as for Democrats in North Carolina, I hope this is the last of a series of unfortunate outcomes -- former Secretary of Agriculture Meg Scott Phipps, former Speaker of the House Jim Black, former Governor Michael Easley, and so on.