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John Edwards affair – Learn from his mistake

August 10th, 2008 · 8 Comments

I really like John Edwards. He talks a good talk, is easy on the eyes, and seems to truly care about addressing some of the income inequalities in this country. His wife is articulate, supporting, and a fighter. And he has photogenic family.

When rumors started to surface last fall about a mistress, I would just hope that it was gossip or maybe fodder to counter Ann Coulter’s remark that Edwards was a “faggot.” Once again, Coulter was wrong. But now that the story has broke and Edwards has acknowledged his affair with Rielle Hunter, I think that other politicians, especially Latinos aiming to climb the political ranks, should take note of this mess and try not to make similar mistakes. Just last summer, we were lamenting Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s affair with Mirthala Salinas, which weakened his credibility and ended his marriage.

All of this drama with mistresses and girlfriends seems like it could be avoided if these men went to places where prostitution was legalized. Both Canada and Mexico have legalized prostitution with certain restrictions, and both places are relatively close for a politician of means to hop on a plane, get serviced professionally, and return home without facing the wrath of the media, the Christian conservatives, and their angry supporters. Of course, I would hope that couples work through their personal problems before resorting to this sort of thing, but if that isn’t possible, why not take this approach? I believe that contemplating the costs and time away to make a short trip to Canada or Mexico might dissuade some politicos from even considering cheating on their partners.

Another thing that has bothered me about this affair and the aftermath has to do with the doom and gloom coming from so many Democrats. Yes, John Edwards royally screwed himself, but John McCain’s whole career has been built as a result of his own affair in which he hooked up with Cindy Hensley. As Cenk Uygur at the Huffington Post points out, “Why are McCain’s actions any more excusable than Edwards?”

James Carville, former Clinton aide and strategist, offered this on Friday, “Certainly, his political career is in shambles. It’s not going to come back. I humanly feel sorry for Mrs. Edwards. I feel sorry for the Edwards children. But I’m not shocked.” This sort of statement is completely uncalled for, as Carville watched President Bill Clinton lie under oath regarding his own sexual relations with a certain intern, get impeached, and then go on to finish his presidential term. I’m beginning to think that James Carville likes to shoot his mouth off for shock value, kind of like he did in calling Bill Richardson “Judas.”

As with other affairs, I think that time will erase some of the hurt and damage that John Edwards had done, and I hope that he can re-group and continue dedicating himself to eradicating poverty in America. Yes, he was reckless, and his calculated risk imploded when he was being mentioned as a possible candidate for a cabinet position in an Obama administration. And I can’t believe that he decided to run for president, jeopardizing the Democratic Party’s chances for a win in November, but it’s done. Time to move on, and most importantly learn from his mistake.

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Tags: Antonio Villaraigosa · Barack Obama · Democratic Party · John Edwards · Mirthala Salinas · Presidential Elections

8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Michaelr // Aug 10, 2008 at 6:50 pm

    John Edwards should retire from public life, and set an example for all politicians who think they are immune to this kind of behavior. You can not engage in this kind of personal behavior, and expect the public to see you in the same light as before you engaged in this reckless behavior (see Henry Cisneros for example). It’s this type of personal carelessness and public recklessness that eventually leads one to believe he is entitled to engage in public theft (see Fabian Nunez), public irresponsibility and transparent leadership (see Antonio Villaraigosa), and public libel/slander for the sole purpose of generating media sound bytes (see Bill Clinton). We are all aware that most American politicians are whores, and Congress, and most State, County, and local governments literally function as publicly financed bordellos ready to service the fiscal interests of the oil, the banking, the airline, and the military industrial complex with tax monies stolen annually from the American taxpayer. However, there is no reason for Democratic politicians to continue trying to emulate the behavioral excesses of the GOP, and convince yourself that you are entitled to behave this way just because you have a following and feed off the public trough. Where is your shame? Where is your dignity? Why do we fiscally and emotionally support political leaders who engage in this behavior? Who the fuck do they think they are? They are supposed to be civil servants…not rock stars.

  • 2 Irma // Aug 11, 2008 at 10:00 am

    The press was irresponsible for releasing the story.
    Edward’s career in politics was dead long ago.

    The tragedy is that Elizabeth Edwards has had to endure such so much, the death of her son,
    cancer and then a relapse from remission , the infidelity of her husband and now because of
    the need of the media to make money – the
    loss of her privacy.

  • 3 xxxicana // Aug 12, 2008 at 5:57 am

    Here in the US our voyeuristic obsession with the private lives of politicians has probably done more harm than good. I disapprove of Edward’s affair, but I was glad to see that he met the press alone . . . he did not pressure Elizabeth to “stand by her man” as so many other politicians did. Edwards took the blame squarely and individually. Good on him.

  • 4 theKaiser // Aug 12, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    More proof that women are the superior sex.

  • 5 craig hill // Aug 12, 2008 at 6:05 pm

    I disapprove of Edwards Affair, and think he only admitted to it, just to try and improve his public image.

  • 6 BettyM // Aug 13, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    First I want to say I agree with theKaiser – women are the superior sex. That said, I don’t think male politicians will learn from the mistakes of others. Edwards doesn’t think his political career is over and he didn’t think he would every get caught. This sort of behavior goes on and on and it happens in every political party. So sad.

  • 7 Mike // Aug 17, 2008 at 6:38 am

    I’ll never understand how public-people think they can get away with these kind of things. It’s sad really, for his family, and for the people who believed in him.

  • 8 YolandaR // Sep 2, 2008 at 7:43 pm

    theKaiser is wrong. The majority power brokers in Washington cheat-male and female. Does it affect their commitment to goals and purposes? Only in America do we insist on moral purity from our narcisstic leaders and they all are if you want to be the Prez. Look at the French President? The world laughs at America bothering with such matters. They are not sleeping with spies and I suggest it might help them relieve the stress of managing a populace that is misguided and misdirected. Almost every world leader–Peres, Putin, Mitterand, daddy Bush–had their mistresses and didn’t hide them. I would rather we stop forcing them to lie and hold them accountable for not effectively addressing societal issues and deficiencies or waging war on countries to seize their oil fields. Just don’t care what they do with their lower head!

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