Before endorsing Barack Obama today, Senator John Edwards praised Hillary Clinton’s efforts and work in this presidential primary campaign calling her a “woman who is made of steel.” He spoke at length of her strengths and contributions to the Democratic Party in a classy and collegial manner. I have come to expect this from him. In the presidential debates early in the primary season, he would often stay above the fray and the initial spats between Clinton and Obama. Many times Edwards appeared to be the most presidential.
I appreciated John Edwards for speaking out on behalf of the poorest Americans. He also is a big believer in the notion that everyone can obtain a college education, which is actually a concept that Harry Truman first brought to the national agenda with the Presidential Commission on Higher Education in 1947. Over 60 years later in America, and we are still falling short of enrolling our citizens in postsecondary institutions and assisting them with the support needed to graduate and complete degree programs that allow them to earn a decent living. As I have discussed before, Latinos are terribly under-represented in American colleges and universities.
John Edwards is still involved in the College for Everyone Program, which is a scholarship program that he and his wife Elizabeth started three years ago in North Carolina. As one of the only presidential candidates this season to really give higher education more thought than a few talking points, he used this opportunity today in stepping out on the national stage again to reach his former supporters via e-mail to donate to the College for Everyone effort.
John Edwards showed true leadership today in calling for the Democrats to come together to win back the White House by devoting their energy to campaigning against John McCain. There has been much speculation that should Obama win in November that he might consider John Edwards for Attorney General or some other cabinet level position. Wouldn’t that be a breath of fresh air, especially after having to endure Alberto Gonzales (aka Fredo)? I hope that he continues to be part of the discussion and policy making process because he has some great ideas for helping the most needy of Americans.
Photo Credit: AP