April 23, 2012

"Nobody cares about what’s happening to John Edwards anymore — he’s old news."

"He’s not relevant to the Democrats in Washington or state capitals. And attacking John Edwards for the Republicans would be like attacking George McGovern."

So says Donnie Fowler, who was a senior adviser to President Obama, so maybe it's time — Romneyites — to care about what’s happening to John Edwards.
Lawyers for the federal government [will attempt to prove] that nearly a million dollars that two wealthy donors gave to Mr. Edwards constitute illegal campaign contributions and were not, as he has claimed, aid from friends trying to help him hide an affair from his wife.

If he is convicted on all six counts, Mr. Edwards, 58, faces up to 30 years in prison and $1.5 million in fines.
Nobody cares.
It is not clear whether Mr. Edwards will testify or to what extent he will participate in his defense. Mr. Edwards was once considered such a skilled trial lawyer that others in the profession would rush to catch his closing arguments.
And now, nobody cares.
“It’s very hard to look at this in a vacuum,” said Marcellus A. McRae, a former federal prosecutor now in private practice. “Because of all these other optics about John Edwards, the jury may be moved to return a verdict that is a general no-confidence vote against him, as opposed to a narrow, legal-focused interpretation of what the law is.”
Aw, but if nobody cares, why not go ahead and just decide based on the law? Maybe Edwards is better off if nobody cares.
One potential fallout may be damage to the reputation of Elizabeth Edwards....

People familiar with the government’s case say testimony could reveal that she was aware of the affair earlier than many believed and that she helped develop strategies for keeping it hidden from the public so her husband’s presidential campaign could continue.

“This will be problematic for her legacy,” said someone who worked closely with Mr. Edwards during the campaign and spoke on the condition of anonymity because the person is on the government’s witness list.
Meanwhile, Edwards still lives "in a sprawling house on about 100 acres with two of his children, Emma Claire, 13, and Jack, 11." Their mother is dead. Their dad faces 30 years in prison for letting friends help him hide his adulterous affair from the public.

Nobody cares.

42 comments:

MadisonMan said...

People care insofar as they understand how close to a disaster the US came?

MayBee said...

Of course Elizabeth Edwards knew.

Her immediate response was to get on DailyKos and make up excuses, all so that she might still be invited to speak at the Democratic National Convention.

I am sorry she had cancer and went through so much in her too-short life, but what was it about her that was ever supposed to be so admirable?

damikesc said...

"He’s not relevant to the Democrats in Washington or state capitals. And attacking John Edwards for the Republicans would be like attacking George McGovern."

...or Democrats attacking George W Bush?

Pastafarian said...

Yeah, Madison Man, we really dodged a bullet there. Instead of a sheister sleazeball attorney, we got a feckless stealth Marxist who's done everything within his power to destroy the economy, our military, and our relationships with allies.

That was a close call.

traditionalguy said...

Rielle gets the trophy. Johnny Edwards fell for her flattery and offer of easy adultery and now he can't get up again.

Jay said...

This will be problematic for her legacy

And here I am not even knowing she really had one!

You do learn something new every day!

Bruce Hayden said...

Now, what about John Corzine? Remember him? The guy who was advising Obama on the economy until he got caught comingling and misappropriating a half a billion or so of clients' money? After he was the Democratic governor and Senator from New Jersey?

OH, wait. He was never indicted, and there is no indication that he ever will be. Edwards' problem appears to be that he was not dealing with enough money. If he had just set his sights higher...

Jay said...

attacking John Edwards for the Republicans would be like attacking George McGovern

Right. Because Edwards wasn't a VP nominee less than a decade ago and didn't run for President in the last election. Oh and he's still alive, so it is like totally the same!

EDH said...

National Review editors: The Questionable Prosecution of
John Edwards


If being a louse were a crime, John Edwards would hang for it. But he is instead facing prison for alleged campaign-finance violations, and it is our obligation to come unenthusiastically to his defense. He may be guilty of bribery, and if he were a sitting senator he would likely be guilty of gross ethics violations, but the facts do not support prosecuting Edwards under campaign-finance laws.

You'd think tax evasion would fit in there someplace.

Expat(ish) said...

Well, I live in the area, and I guess the dead-tree press is covering it in some form, but nobody I know who follows politics is following it.

-XC

Scott M said...

Had Edwards not imploded, he was certainly positioned to do some damage in the Dem primaries. Would BHO have done with both Edwards and Hillary to contend with? Regardless, someone that comes that close to being president deserves, if nothing else, the media's attention. AA is correct about appeals for the legal aspects in which we-the-people should still care. And, if he does go to trial and is convicted, that will be big news.

Dan in Philly said...

Nobody cares because he's a democrat chosen by a presidential candidate to be a heartbeat away from the presidency. However he reflects on a current US Senator and the establishment which chose him and it seems the media which enabled him. So yes, he is relevant.

The Crack Emcee said...

Nobody cares.

Kinda like what "most people don't think" about, no?

And, of course - through Rielle - there's a NewAge connection - making it another story of demise we'd rather forget.

Funny how that keeps happening,...

Original Mike said...

What Pastafarian said.

edutcher said...

Axelrod and Plouffe are praying nobody cares about Edwards.

But, yes, people care because it's yet another of the many Democrat scandals that the media tried to sweep under the rug and Dictator Zero has more than a few of his own brewing, so they want as little attention paid to this as possible.

And like the Hildabeast and, to a certain extent, perhaps, Moochelle, Elizabeth Edwards was the hard-core ideologue who hitched herself to a pretty face and intended to see her agenda implemented through an empty suit, so, yes, I think MayBee is right that she knew. The other element is that she may have agreed to let him see other women since her treatments might have incapacitated her, but the Breck Girl let it get out of hand and that's when the relationship fell apart.

Bob Ellison said...

I'm with National Review: Edwards probably didn't commit the crime of which he's accused, and it probably shouldn't be a crime anyway. Edwards is reviled for many other reasons, some of them potentially criminal, but this case is messed up.

Edwards will not dark America's door again, so trying him for the wrong reasons on a silly statute from an ineffective and invalid authority (the FEC) makes me not care.

Jim Gust said...

My understanding is that Bunny Mellon filed gift tax returns for what she gave Edwards. If that is true, then what he did with the money is not the government's business, and this prosecution should fall apart.

The real story is how the press let him almost get away with this. But for The National Enquirer . . .

Contrarian Catalogue said...

So he's on trial for covering up an extramarital affair: something politicians have been doing since the beginning of time. Big deal. Get back to me when they prosecute Bush for defrauding the country into the Iraq war.

Original Mike said...

"I'm with National Review: Edwards probably didn't commit the crime of which he's accused, and it probably shouldn't be a crime anyway. Edwards is reviled for many other reasons, some of them potentially criminal, but this case is messed up."

Despite the fact that John Edwards is a piece of human excrement, I agree.

Bruce Hayden said...

I'm with National Review: Edwards probably didn't commit the crime of which he's accused, and it probably shouldn't be a crime anyway. Edwards is reviled for many other reasons, some of them potentially criminal, but this case is messed up.

Well, maybe I am a bit too cynical for my own good. Edwards abused the legal system to make a fortune on channeling dead babies and now is suffering from the system maybe being abused against him. I think though that I really started despising him when he would talk about the two Americas from his mansion across the street from the trailer park.

I know that two wrongs don't make a right, but it still sometimes feels pretty good.

pm317 said...

Romney people should care to the extent how Obama people used Edwards and his affair to get nominated first and elected later.

MadisonMan said...

Well, it would be very interesting if Kerry/Edwards had beaten Bush in '04 -- who would be President now, and how would history have changed?

Michael said...

People care that the press knew about Edwards and decided we didnt need to know. We wont "move on" past that knowledge. Ever.

Joaquin said...

"My understanding is that Bunny Mellon filed gift tax returns for what she gave Edwards. If that is true, then what he did with the money is not the government's business, and this prosecution should fall apart"

What if the funds were comingled?
We here in the Tarheel state are following this.

ricpic said...

Demote the Breck girl to Suave!

David said...

John Edwards is already in his own special kind of hell. He has become unimportant and a object of either mirth or derision. He also is probably going to face some serious financial issues.

Apart from the financial cost, the trial is actually a positive for him. If he wins, he will claim both vindication and credit for the brilliant legal strategy of the defense. There are already stories out there about how "involved" he is in the case.

If he loses, expect appeals to the circuit court and to public sympathy. Are they really going to sentence him to jail? He has kids at home and another one for which he owes child support.

Whatever happens it will be all about John Edwards in the mind of John Edwards. I expect that after the trial (or perhaps during) he will find Jesus as his True and Only Personal Savior. This too will be all about John Edwards.

Meanwhile the press will not be asking "What did other Democrats know and when did they know it." They will follow the orders to see this as yesterday's news.

And some federal prosecutors will be trying to make their career via a dubious prosecution under a dubious law.

Why should anyone care about this?

Rabel said...

Federal election law specifically addresses gifts:

(8) (A) The term “contribution” includes—
(i) any gift, subscription, loan, advance, or deposit of money or anything of value made by any person for the purpose of influencing any election for Federal office;

Which is why this statement fron Bunny is important:

“From now on,” she wrote, “all haircuts, etc., that are necessary and important for his campaign — please send the bills to me. . . . It is a way to help our friend without government restrictions.”

Paying the personal expenses of a candidate is not a legal method of circumventing campaign law.

ndspinelli said...

Edwards has been a nothingburger for some time. He was when his wife died. However, that didn't stop some folks here from attacking his wife the day she died.

MadisonMan said...

John Edwards is already in his own special kind of hell.

Not quite. He still has a lustrous head of hair.

Original Mike said...

"I know that two wrongs don't make a right, but it still sometimes feels pretty good."

I didn't say I'm not enjoying it ...

Katherine said...

It's an interesting case, and legal experts here think it will be close -- not a slam dunk conviction. The U.S. Attorney who took the case through to indictment (and also indicted and got convictions of several other prominent NC Democrats) is running for the newly configured thirteenth Congressional district, so it's not a dead issue in NC.

bgates said...

...or Democrats attacking George W Bush?

I was thinking Rutherford B Hayes.

bgates said...

as he has claimed, aid from friends trying to help him hide an affair from his wife

It's not really part of a War on Women, though, right? Because he was trying to help the other woman.

The one who wasn't dying of cancer.
The one who wasn't his wife and the mother of (then - all; now - most of) his children.

bgates said...

Edwards still lives "in a sprawling house on about 100 acres with two of his children"

What about Rielle and his other child? Would it be fair for Elizabeth Edwards to have lived in a sprawling house on about 100 acres while Rielle lived in some dingy little apartment? Elizabeth's lifestyle wasn't harmed at all by the millions of dollars given to her husband's mistress, and the life of the knocked-up girlfriend of the nationally prominent Democratic politician and Vice Presidential candidate was much improved.

I think if you spread your seed around, it's good for everybody.

William said...

I take a certain amount of pleasure watching them sweat the sheen out of his hair, but, for all that, it does seem a waste of money to prosecute him. The extra-judicial punishment, i.e. the loss of his reputation and any chance of public esteem, seems to me to be suffcient punishment. I just don't think jail time will serve any useful purpose. I won't feel any safer when he's behind bars, and no politician will be inhibited by his incarceration....Politicians seduce people. That's their job. It's an almost instinctive response. They aim for the electorate but sometimes they hit the cute blonde. I don't think Edwards will be the cautionary example for them. Most of them think that they're like Kennedy or Clinton: A certain amount of roguish behavior demonstrates not their weakness but their charm and magnetism. For the sacrifices they make for this great country, they deserve a little nookie.....

Roman said...

Perhaps Silky Pony feels put off by not being relevant any more?

The largest offence I see in the whole process is the Dinosaur Media covering up for him during the election cycle.

MikeDC said...

The Obama guys don't want to bring up John Edwards because they don't want to talk about campaign finance when they're busy getting fraudulent credit card contributions and bundles of stolen MF Global money from John Corzine.

ricpic said...

A Democrat's Lot

A little nookie...
Is that so much to ask
As we go about the terrible task
Of worshipping a wookie?

David said...

"The U.S. Attorney who took the case through to indictment (and also indicted and got convictions of several other prominent NC Democrats) is running for the newly configured thirteenth Congressional district, so it's not a dead issue in NC."

What a surprise. Prosecution as career building. They need to start building some major institutional checks on exercise of prosecutor discretion.

jimbino said...

I think it gives us all comfort to realize that sometimes presidential candidates and presidents can be hoist by their own petards, imprisoned, hanged, hanged upside down, shot and dismembered.

cubanbob said...

Contrarian Catalogue said...
So he's on trial for covering up an extramarital affair: something politicians have been doing since the beginning of time. Big deal. Get back to me when they prosecute Bush for defrauding the country into the Iraq war.

4/23/12 11:06 AM

And along with Clinton who told us about Saddam's WMD program and all of the democrats who voted for it as well. Then lets prosecute Obama and the democrats for pissing away 5 trillion in less than 4 years.

Proof said...

When he ran for veep, I watched him on Fox News Sunday trying to assassinate the character of Judge Charles Pickering for purely partisan reasons.

He was speaking of a legal decision Pickering had made, which, as a lawyer, had Edwards known all the facts in the case, he was lying, and if he didn't know all the facts in the case, then he shouldn't have ventured an opinion, much less condemnation.

At that point, respect and contempt for him vied for which could drop or rise the fastest.

The subsequent revelations of his infidelity, lies and sleaziness, concomitant with his character, were therefore no surprise.