Former U.S. Sen. John Edwards is a serial liar — who came within just a few thousand votes of becoming vice president of the United States.
He cheated on his cancer-stricken wife with a woman who worked as a videographer for his campaign. He lied about the affair to his wife and to the inquiring media, only to admit that he did have such an affair. Then he denied being the father of the woman’s baby daughter, only to admit that, yep, he’s the daddy. He reportedly pleaded with a former staffer and friend to cover it up, professing his love for his ailing wife and saying he wanted to protect her from all this bad publicity.
And all the while, Edwards was presenting himself to his adoring supporters as a dedicated family man, devoted to his wife and children and a champion of the concerns of ordinary Americans.
That might be the most important lie of all.
The word this week is that Edwards and his wife, Elizabeth, have separated. Imagine that.
But now get this: The 2004 presidential election, in which Edwards ran on the Democratic ticket as the vice presidential nominee, came within a whisker of electing Sen. John Kerry as president — and Edwards as the VP.
The election came down to who would win Ohio’s 20 electoral votes. President Bush ended up winning that state by 158,000 votes out of more than 5.6 million votes cast. That means a swing of 79,000 votes to Kerry and Edwards and Ohio’s electoral votes go into the Democrats’ column. Thus, Kerry and Edwards win with 271 electoral votes to 267 for Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney — which would have been nearly identical to Bush’s razor-thin winning Electoral College margin in the 2000 election.
Edwards’ fellow Democrat, U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri, had it right this week. Edwards is “disgusting.”