Let's look at the statement published at Kos under the name of Elizabeth Edwards:
Our family has been through a lot. Some caused by nature, some caused by human weakness, and some – most recently – caused by the desire for sensationalism and profit without any regard for the human consequences. None of these has been easy. But we have stood with one another through them all. Although John believes he should stand alone and take the consequences of his action now, when the door closes behind him, he has his family waiting for him.So he wasn't at the hotel with the child? Or he was there with the child that he didn't father? Blah. Did you watch him on "Nightline." I didn't. I never watch "Nightline."
John made a terrible mistake in 2006. The fact that it is a mistake that many others have made before him did not make it any easier for me to hear when he told me what he had done. But he did tell me. And we began a long and painful process in 2006, a process oddly made somewhat easier with my diagnosis in March of 2007. This was our private matter, and I frankly wanted it to be private because as painful as it was I did not want to have to play it out on a public stage as well. Because of a recent string of hurtful and absurd lies in a tabloid publication, because of a picture falsely suggesting that John was spending time with a child it wrongly alleged he had fathered outside our marriage, our private matter could no longer be wholly private.
UPDATE: A partial transcript of the "Nightline" interview. Excerpts:
[BOB] WOODRUFF:& How long did it last and when exactly did it end?Probably the most admired and beloved person in this country.... Where did that come from? Woodruff is a ninny. "How could you have done this?" is a pretty silly question anyway. Why doesn't he just slap Edwards in the face and shout "you beast!"? Edwards gives a long answer that boils down to the fact that he was selfish and egomaniacal — and running for VP can do that to a man.
JOHN EDWARDS: [refuses to answer.]...
WOODRUFF: I know this is a very difficult question, but were you in love with [Rielle Hunter]?
EDWARDS: [Answers in the present tense that he is "in love with one woman," his wife Elizabeth. Woodruff doesn't figure out that he should insist on an answer to the question that was asked in the past tense.]
WOODRUFF: Your wife, Elizabeth, is probably the most admired and beloved person in this country, she's had enormous sympathy because she's also gone through cancer, how could you have done this?
Woodruff asks about the picture of Edwards holding the baby, and Edwards goes on about how he can't say what that picture is. Woodruff has the wit to ask him, "But are you saying you don't remember holding that child of Miss Hunter?" Edwards, tellingly, goes back to the photograph:
EDWARDS: I'm saying you asked me about this photograph, I don't know anything about that photograph, I don't know who that baby is. I don't know if the picture has been altered, manufactured, if it's a picture of me taken some other time, holding another baby -- I have no idea. I was not at this meeting holding a child for my photograph to be taken I can tell you that.Pay attention here. He does not say he didn't hold the child. He only says he didn't pose for a photograph and is refusing to authenticate the photograph. This has a real smokescreen feeling to it that to me this suggests that he did hold the baby.
Woodruff follows up:
WOODRUFF: You did say you did meet her at a hotel in California.Finally, cornered, he says "no." A lie?
EDWARDS: She was there, Mr. McGovern was present, and that's where the meeting took place.
WOODRUFF: But you don't remember a baby being there?