Wednesday, August 13, 2008

It Was A Mistake, Bad Judgement

I just read the transcript of the interview John Edwards gave to Bob Woodruff of ABC's Nightline program. I found it interesting that while he admits to having an affair, he never uses that word. It's always :a mistake", a "huge mistake", an "error in judgement", "bad judgement", but never an "affair". So while he implied that he was admitting to an affair, he never really said it. Can one really admit to something without actually saying the word?

I'm curious as to why he can't bring himself to say the word. Maybe because he's embarrassed? Maybe because he knows there is more to it than just an affair? Perhaps if he admits to a mistake, and using bad judgement he doesn't have to admit to himself that he had an affair that may have resulted in the birth of a baby? I guess that's for philosophical discussion. I'm not here to judge anyone. That's not my role in life and I try really hard to not make judgements about people. But I can and will, make observations about people in the news.

Let's remember that there's more than one person at fault here. Rielle Hunter made the same mistakes that John Edwards did. Although John went one step further and cheated on his cancer-stricken wife, and it's my understanding that Ms. Hunter is divorced. So while societial standards were broken, John is the one who hurt and embarrassed his wife and family. John is also the one who ran for office based on a platform of family values. He hurt that cause and the people who believed in him.

Ms. Hunter may have "lost face" with family and friends, but it's momentary, and will be mostly forgotten before long. Edwards lost far more. Aside from any rift this placed between John and Elizabeth and John and his kids, his affair has left any hopes of a political career in shambles. He says in the Nightline interview that he didn't know whether he wanted to continue in politics anyway. I sort of feel it's sour grapes - it's pretty much over, so he doesn't want it anyway.

The cornerstone of his political platform was family values. Who would feel comfortable supporting him when he himself violated his own core beliefs? There will probably be a Federal investigation into whether political funds were used to support Ms. Hunter. There is talk that Ms. Hunter was given $15000 a month, and that Edwards not only knew the funds came from a political fund, but orchestrated the plan. It's possible that Edwards will be looking at Federal charges and, if convicted, Federal time for misuse of political funds. Whether an investigation is forthcoming remains to be seen. I think it will happen eventually. If there is a Federal investigation into misuse of political funds, and Edwards is indicted and convicted, he will lose his license to practice law.

Ms. Hunter has been reported to be critical of Ms. Edwards. Of course she is, she wants Elizabeth's husband. At this point in time, even if Elizabeth were to succum to her cancer, I have doubts that John Edwards will ever marry Ms. Hunter. Even if the baby is his. I just don't see it happening.

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