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John Edwards On Trial

John Edwards on trial, accused of using nearly a million dollars in campaign funds to hide an affair. Is he a cad or a criminal? Should he be facing up to 30 years in jail?

In this April 12, 2012, file photo, former presidential candidate and U.S. Sen. John Edwards arrives outside federal court following a lunch break in Greensboro, N.C., during jury selection in his criminal trial on alleged campaign finance violations. Defense lawyers for John Edwards will argue at his trial that much of the nearly $1 million in secret payments at issue in the criminal case against their client were actually siphoned off by a trusted aide to build an expansive dream home. (AP)

In this April 12, 2012, file photo, former presidential candidate and U.S. Sen. John Edwards arrives outside federal court following a lunch break in Greensboro, N.C., during jury selection in his criminal trial on alleged campaign finance violations. (AP)

The trial of former presidential candidate John Edwards going on now in North Carolina is hard to watch.  The testimony is so sad.  So tawdry.  A dying and deeply betrayed wife.  A hidden mistress and daughter.  A million dollars, nearly, sloshing around to keep them out of sight.  The whole thing makes you want to say “no” and “wrong.”

But should it put John Edwards in prison for maybe 30 years?   We want accountability on campaign spending.  But when the personal and political get so twisted, do we want to criminalize a run for high office?

This hour, On Point:  John Edwards on trial.

-Tom Ashbrook

 

Guests

Hampton Dellinger, litigation partner with Robinson Bradshaw & Hinson. He is also a legal analyst for MSNBC and the former state deputy Attorney General in North Carolina.

Melanie Sloan, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

Walter Shapiro, a columnist for the Columbia Journalism Review and Yahoo! News, and special correspondent to The New Republic. Read his preview to the John Edwards trial.

From Tom’s Reading List

Charlotte Observer “Remember how in the Bible, Moses’ punishment for disobedience was being denied entry into the Promised Land?”

National Review “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.”

Chicago Tribune “Jurors in the federal criminal trial of John Edwards were clearly not given a primer on the intricacies of the campaign finance laws he is accused of violating. Instead, they listened to Andrew Young, the former presidential candidate’s once-trusted aide, describe how Edwards called his mistress a “crazy slut,” used a secret “Bat phone” to call her, and accepted money from rich friends to pay her expenses.”

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  • Roy Mac

    You bet!  String up his sorry ass in the same tree we hang W and Cheney from, for sending thousands of young Americans to die for their oil–but not until.

    • Gregg

       “… die for their oil”, that’s rich.

      • Hidan

         oil often makes one rich.

      • Brett

        non-Edwards reply.

        • Gregg

           #7

      • Azra

        but true.

    • Azra

      Don’t leave out Rummy.

  • Blottomania

    Hey Tom…would you be asking this question about whether it’s worthwhile or fair to prosecute him if he was a Republican?  I’m curious. 

    Tom DeLay was sentenced to three years in prison (out on appeal) for campaign finance abuses. Should we drop his conviction and jail time? Please respond.

    • Still Here

      Of course he wouldn’t.  He can’t hide his bias.

  • Pingback: John Edwards On Trial #john edwards | Blue Planet

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  • U.S. Vet.

    John Edwards deserves to be on trial.

    Just as Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton deserve to be on trial for their “Kinetic” actions (war) in Libya, which was not authorized by Congress, but which did result in approximately 30,000 innocent Libyan civilians being slaughtered. 

    • Still Here

      I betting on another Peace Prize!

    • Victor Vito

      What’s with the linkage?  Nobody asked about those other pols.

      • Gregg

        Nor did anyone ask about Newt, Tom Delay, John Ensign, Larry Craig, W, Cheney or Tom Foley. For some reason they were all brought up… and it’s early.

        • Gregg

          I can play that game too. This character Elizabeth Warren is an unscrupulous liar.

          • Brett

            non-Edwards reply.

          • Gregg

            A particularly good #7.

        • Brett

          non-Ewards reply.

          • Gregg

             #7

    • Hidan

      Don’t forget to add to the list Old Man Mccain, and droopy dog Lieberman. Though not all were killed many fled are being tracked down by the TNC(mainly cause there black) curious if the Atrocities Prevention Board will be investigating it?

    • Terry Tree Tree

      NOT the AWOL, and his administration, for ALL their crimes against the U.S., and others in the world?
          You going to be a hypocrite?

      • U.S. Vet.

        It’s supporters of the war criminals Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, such as yourself, who are the clear, out in the open hypocrites.

    • Azra

      No crime was commited. The rest of the world agreed that it was the right thing to do.

      If it WAS somhow deemed a criminal act, who would prosecute all those countries that America assisted? Libya?

  • Still Here

    John Edwards is a typical Democrat politician; a liar, a cheater, a crook.  He creates some fallacy about two Americas in order to appeal to those always blaming others and looking for a handout.  Meanwhile, he is robbing you blind.

    • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

      … and Republicans own the moral high ground?

      Three names come to mind Newt Gettingrich – Cheated on his first wife, then served divorce papers on his wife as she was fighting cancer.
      Newt Gingrich – Doing the nasty with his mistress staffer in the halls of Congress while cheating on his second wife (his first mistress with his first wife) while leading the charge for impeaching Clinton for cheating on his wife with a staffer.
      Newt Gingrich – Set the record for fines in ethics violations.

      Newt Gettingrich – a leader in the Republican party.

      This reptilian life form was actually getting votes from large blocks of voters in the GOP. Now who’s judgement is impaired?

      And that’s he’s one of those self-righteous, born-again-patriots.

      So do you actually believe everything that folks who pal around with the likes of Newt say? Folks like the drug-addict doc-shopping misogynist Rush?

      • Gregg

        Okay, let’s assume your vitriol is rooted in fact (it’s not). How is bad behavior excused by citing other bad behavior? That’s really lame.

        • Victor Vito

          Almost as lame as attributing misconduct and immorality to only one of the American political parties.  Totally lame, double G.

          • Gregg

            Who is doing that?

        • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

          I’m not excusing it. I am replying to the comment that he’s “typical Democrat politician” and the implication behind that being that Republican politicians are morally and ethically more qualified to run the country when in fact Republicans make God and family a core issue that they use against us Godless, evil, morally corrupt Democrats who want nothing more than to destroy the family, America and faith…. and where am I factually off? Perhaps the comparison to reptilian life forms was a bit much, I apologize to all snakes and lizards and such, but he is a cold blooded rutheless politician whom the Republican party embraced this election cycle knowing full well his record.

        • Patrik

          He is just calling out your use of “…Democrat Politician…” instead of just politician… 

          • Gregg

            I did not do that.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Still Here did.  That is who Mark was responding to.
               Check the thread?

          • Gregg

            Patrick was responding to me.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            MY mistake.  MY apology. 
               I was correct that Still Here made the statement, and Mark was responding to that.
               I missed that Patrick was responding to you.

          • Patrik

            I stand corrected… His use of “…Democrat politician..” instead of just politician

          • Gregg

            BTW, it’s a fair point.

          • Brett

            going from “I did not do that” to “it’s a fair point”…remember, you’re just fooling the foolish: yourself.

          • Gregg

            Brett, I did not say what Patrick said I said, Still Here did. I also did not give the proper context in my reply to MMTCW who was replying to Still Here. Patrick pointed that out and he was right, it was a fair point. It’s called honest debate. 

        • Brett

          You’re the king of tit-for-tat! Whatchu talkin’ ’bout?

        • Brett

          non-Edwards reply (You’re racking them up!)

          • Gregg

             #7

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Not defending Edwards. 
          YOU forgot Larry Craig, John Ensign, Tom Foley, and a HOST of other ‘compassionate’ ‘conservative’, ‘Christian’, Republicans?

      • Gregg

        What did Democrat Tom Foley do? What business is it of yours if Larry Craig enjoys anonymous gay sex on his day off?

        • Terry Tree Tree

          The HYPOCRICY of Larry Craig, gay-bashing in public, while being a gay Republican.
             I have NO problem with consenting adults with each other, gay, or hetero.
             I guess I mixed Tom Foley up with the Republican that was trying to molest Congressional Pages.
             Republicans CLAIM the moral high-ground, while CASTIGATING Democrats for being ‘human’!   When the HYPOCRICY is revealed, they mumble about ‘being falllable’, ‘being human’, etc…, and are ALL ABOUT ‘forgiveness’. 
             MANY ‘Christians’ are guilty of the same type of HYPOCRICY.
             Don’t you find that disgusting, AND confusing?
             Do as I SAY, NOT as I DO?

          • Azra

            The louder they are, the more guilty they are of whatever perceived “sin” they are outraged about.

        • Brett

          non-Edwards reply.

          • Gregg

             #7

      • Terry Tree Tree

        MARK Foley, the Congressman using eMails, to try to molest children!

      • Sam Walworth

         Ted Haggard is the name that comes to my mind..

    • Victor Vito

      C’mon.

    • jefe68

      So what does that make Nixon.

      • Gregg

         A loyal husband?

        • Brett

          Only you would find the most prominent aspect of Nixon’s life to be his loyalty to Pat. The three monkeys depriving themselves of sensory input could have been more astute.

          • Gregg

            Please dude, the whole thing is silly. Nixon?! We aren’t talking about Nixon.

            Oh yea, all I know about Nixon was he was a loyal husband. Is there anything else? Think what you want.

          • Brett

            Playing dumb again as your obfuscation tactic?…let’s call that rebuttal #4. Numbering your rebuttals would save you a lot of time. 

          • Gregg

            Which # is “I’m too dumb to know what I’m obfuscating”?

          • Brett

            Passive-aggressive much? I particularly like it when you go for the martyr routine; when does that come? After rebuttal #7?

          • jefe68

            Touche.

          • jefe68

            Why Nixon?
            Because when people start using terms such as “John Edwards is a typical Democrat politician; a liar, a cheater, a crook…”  it’s obvious that this is more about using the Edwards case as partisan fodder. Being a liar, a cheat and a crook is not bound to any political party. Nixon personifies the worst in politics. The funny thin is he would be shunned by the likes of right wingers like yourself today as being to liberal.

          • Gregg

            As I said to Patrick, fair point. I guess Still Here had it coming but he’s a smart commenter. Apologies.

            Regarding your last sentence, please don’t tell me what I think.

        • Brett

          Another non-Edwards comment.

          • Gregg

            I’ll call it #7

            “I have kept it to Edwards except to reply to distractions like this one.

    • Azra

      Better than the weapons of mass destruction fallacy. Granted, not as imaginative.

      By the way, that’s another fallacy. In reality, he’s a Democratic politician.

    • Azra

      WHO’S always blaming others?

  • Gregg

    That Edwards was so close to being VP is scary. Here’s what did him in:

     http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xb55kj_i-feel-pretty-john-edwards-sung-by_news

    • Hidan

       lame

      • Gregg

        I agree, any man that obsessed with his hair is too sissified to be VP.

        • Hidan

           lol sissified, like Romney crying about the President using his words about OBL against him. 

        • Brett

          What about a man who uses Brylcreem in his hair running for president?

          • potter

            I just love the way Romney does his hair– starch? But he allows a little bunch to fall sexy onto his face which goes with the jeans and the rolled up shirtsleeves— like he’s workin’ hard. Actually Edwards likes the jeans look too. They have the hair  and jeans thing in common.

          • Azra

            . . . and the lies.

          • potter

            Yes the lies, but I think Romney has the lie thing really down pat. It’s his hair that is so amazing. He must put this goop on and then run a very wide- toothed comb through it because it stays in channels. Gosh I am beginning to sound like Howie Carr on the left… Why don’t we have Howie Carrs on the left ( well maybe Maureen Dowd and remember that wonderful gal from Texas? Molly Ivins.

          • Azra

            He must use a child’s rake. The rows can be seen on a Nook; how much more prominent on a big screen TV?

          • potter

            yeah wow, but I am not gonna turn on my big screen for this.

          • Azra

            Who could blame you? We’ve all seen quite enough as it is.

          • Azra

            – – IT MUST BE A WIG!

          • Azra

            A little dab’ll do ya! Sure it’s not Vitalis, or Wilroot Cream Oil, Charlie?

            (Maybe he found a stash his father had, from the 50′s.)

            Could be mustache wax . . .

  • john in danvers

    Edwards is a dangerous guy–made his pile of dough jousting with the 1% for the benefit of the 99%.  Of course he has to be put away.  The next time he runs they may not be able to hound him off the ticket or saddle him with a loser. 

    • Gregg

      He single handedly caused the rate of Cesarian births to skyrocket. He’s a sleazy lawyer.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Quite a charge!  Do you have anything to back that up?
           HOW would he have done so?

      • Brett

        Should a doctor not be sued when he/she commits malpractice? Is this what you’re saying?

        • Gregg

          No, that’s not what I’m saying but thanks for asking.

          • Brett

            Just responding and tying in healthcare reform to today’s topic?

          • Gregg

            No, sleazeball trial lawyers enriching themselves to the detriment of women, who are held up as worthy of being President but are only worthy of jail time IS the topic.

    • susanr48

       riduculous

  • SteveV

    Ah Icarus, you flew to close to the sun revealing the contemptable person you really are.

  • Victor Vito

    Castration, imprisonment, whatever.  He is everything that is wrong with politicians.

  • Terry Tree Tree

    Interesting was the announcement that his aide, that claimed to be the ‘father’, diverted so much money, for his own use?
        MANY will castigate Mr. Edwards, or other Democrats, for crimes, or reports of crimes, while IGNORING the same, or WORSE crimes, by the ‘compassionate’, ‘conservative’, ‘Christian’,  Republicans, that claim the high-moral ground!
        Look at all that STILL support the Child-RAPING clergy!
       “The mote in your neighbor’s eye”?

  • Hidan

    If Edwards gets convicted he should face jail time, but 30 years seems pretty out there especially after one finds out the Obama White House is defending john yoo and his torture memo against Jose Padilla.

    http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Justice/2012/0502/Torture-memos-author-can-t-be-sued-for-harsh-interrogations-court-rules

    • William

      Should AG Holder be brought up on charges for his failed Fast and Furious gun running program?

      • Gregg

        Absolutely.

        • Brett

          Here’s a reply that has nothing to do with Edwards…you seem to suffer from short-term memory problems. Maybe put down the weed once when it comes to morning use.  

          • Gregg

            #7

  • Brett

    Edwards needs to do some jail time. At least! (I didn’t like him back before all of this broke; he just reeked of sleaze!)

    • Hidan

       cheating on a wife with cancer was pretty sleazy. Doesn’t he know you do that before you run for office?:P

      But for real it was pretty disgusting. 

  • Drew (GA)

    If he misappropriated campaign funds he should be held accountable. Rounding up the mob and burning him at the stake is not accountability. Why do we always say we want accountability when what we really want is Vengeance?

    And am I the only one that is more bothered by the fact that Gingrich’s (marketing) campaign consumed millions of dollars? Here’s a FAUX headline I stumbled across, last place I would have expected to see this Header:

    “Gingrich mothballs campaign, but leaves behind multi-million dollar debt”

    Guess that’s his reward for failing to fall into lock-step behind Romney at the desired moment.

  • William

    Edwards is a well educated lawyer and knew he was breaking the law.

    • Azra

      Astounding, isn’t it?

  • NrthOfTheBorder

    We like to crucify someone who provokes moral outrage – but we also need to persist in calling out the legions of Takers in Washington who cloak themselves in the garments of National Security or Righteous Indignation.  

    • Azra

      Alas, it will never happen.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    If Edwards did the the crime, he should do the time. That said, there are thousands that illegally drove us to the crash of 2008 that should join him. The only reason the possible sentence sounds so severe is that there are so many who have done just as bad or worse but have not had to face any charges at all.

  • potter

    Let’s get after the criminals that took us to war in Iraq.

    • Gregg

      America is united in its determination to eliminate forever the threat of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction.” — John Edwards, Oct 10, 2002

      • potter

        JOhn Edwards did not take us to war in Iraq

        • Gregg
          • potter

            Are you suggesting that Hilary Clinton who also voted for this authorization, or all who did are complicit. I agree. I include all those citizens who voted for Bush and the Supreme court as having a degree of complicity. But as to who actually made the decision, who took us to war, who gave us and the world false information, who sent Colin Powell to the UN to make the case- the buck stops with Bush and Cheney. They should be held accountable. This Edwards thing is a circus. The lack of accountability in THIS areas is shameful. The Iraq war and the doctrine of pre-emptive war needs to be on trial.  

          • Gregg

            I’m not going to debate the Iraq war on a John Edwards board. I’m just outing the craziness of your distraction.

          • Brett

            “America is united in its determination to eliminate forever the threat of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction.” — John Edwards, Oct 10, 2002

            This was your comment, and it started the thread. What a piece of work your are. Have you no conscience? 

          • Gregg

            “Let’s get after the criminals that took us to war in Iraq.”

            This was
            Potter’s comment which started this thread. I refuted it and tied it to today’s subject. How many times will your hate blind you? Check your facts before you hit “Post”.

          • Brett

            Oh, your were just responding and making it relevant to today’s topic…you are coming up to your persecution mode; I can feel it.

          • Gregg

            “I waswrong aboput the thread”, say it.

          • potter

            it was truly brilliant to tie things together this way. You refuted my criticism about lack of accountiblity?

          • Gregg

            I wouldn’t say brilliant just oppotunistic

          • potter

            Gregg this whole Edwards thing is a distraction.

          • Gregg

            “Gregg this whole Edwards thing is a distraction”… of the day.

        • Drew (GA)

          He knows that, he’s just (unnecessarily) pointing out that he went along for the ride. I notice no mention of the fact that the quoted statement was made based on false information and intentional misdirection.

          • ana

            That is an important, often overlooked,  element in the vote to allow President Bush’s decision.

      • potter

        This quote, if it is a quote, does not suggest going to war. 

      • ana

        We are not debating the Iraq War today, are we Gregg?

    • Azra

      Don’t give up hope. Wait for the Spanish inquisition, (complete with water-boarding, we pray). Spain is still working on it, and they’re determined to bring ALL those despicable war criminals to justice.

      • Drew (GA)

        If they (Spain) can manage not to go bankrupt in the meantime…

        • Azra

          Yes, that could put a damper on the investigation, but they’re so commited, they might just carry on as usual, without pay. They do hold the moral high ground.

    • Gregg

      Continuing my reply up here Potter, tiny box got me.
      By “refuted” I meant I tried to show the word “criminals” was as vague as the charges. Maybe refuted was misleading.

      • potter

        How about “treasonous”? Does that word suit you? What about the morality of taking a country to war before all options are tried and all the evidence is in and the real necessity is determined? What of all of the killing involved? (o’ “Shock and Awe”). What about the morality of completely messing up a country and leaving that mess? What about our need for oil as the real reason? What about the hair-brained notion that the middle east could be made over to our liking? What about the ENORMOUS dollar COST and how that digs into our budget issues NOW? 

        And pray tell how does THAT compare to the ganging up on Bill Clinton for his affair with Monica? And isn’t this Edwards thing about prurient interest? Selling advertising? Who or what judges where our attention goes, citizen Gregg? 

        • Azra

          TREASONOUS IS PERFECT.

  • Azra

    Thirty years seems excessive for almost any crime, and he is still innocent, by law. If he is guilty, he should pay in some way, as should Andrew Young.

  • Mike in PA

    Once again the government is wasting valuable tax dollars going after publicity trials.  Spend more time going after more difficult wall street scams as opposed to Roger Clemens, Blaggo and Edwards.

    I equate the Edwards and Eliot Spitzer (and somewhat Scooter Libby) to the sad story of individuals who have great intellect and power but completely waste a world changing opportunity for greed and lust.  Perhaps it’s indicative of the psyche that individuals have when they gain the combo of power and intellect, but then look at President Obama.  Although I’m a conservative and disagree with President Obama on just about everything, I respect him greatly for seeming to be a good and honest human being.

    If you remember, Edwards was the democrat running to end poverty – which is a huge issue in America.  I wonder what an Edwards presidency would have done to help people rise from poverty, but he wasted that opportunity.

    If you remember, Spitzer was the one man Wall Street feared.  I wonder what would have happened if Spitzer was Attorney General for the U.S. or had otherwise had the clout to go after the corrupt people on Wall Street.  But he wasted that opportunity.

    • J__o__h__n

      Spitzer resigned.  Edwards kept lying. 

      • Mike in PA

        Spitzer could have been the guy to go after wall street.  Whether or not he resigned doesn’t excuse the consideration that he would have been the guy to go after wall street.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Crucifying one person for a crime while ignoring thousands who committed crimes is not justice.

    • Azra

      Is certainly is NOT justice, but justice doesn’t matter much here anymore. Get used to it. This is America. Where’s your patriotism?

  • brettearle

    It’s possible that the Jury will “throw the book at him”, regardless of the fine points of the law.

    Everyone feels strongly about infidelity–but especially when the aggrieved is going through a major crisis, unrelated to the Affair.

    This sort of “Hell Hath No Fury” approach to Edwards’s possible demise may be the result of a Jury Nullification lynching.

    The Public needs to separate out emotions from the law.

    And my guess is that TOO OFTEN jurors are motivated by their own quiet and loud moral outrage–rather than the evidence and the literal definition of the Law.

    Doesn’t mean, of course, that Edwards isn’t a complete and utter jerk….and worse.

    • Brett

      Hey, brettearle!

      I agree, but we aren’t in a court of law here, we’re offering our opinions.

      • brettearle

        First, Hey, back!

        Second, Lose the name!

        [I'm pulling rank, on you....I'm older]

        Third,

        When I say Public, I, of course, am not referring to “On Point” nation, per se.

        But, rather I am referring to anyone who might serve on a jury someday–when someone’s future destiny lies in a panel’s hands….. 

        That having been said, opine away…..

        • Brett

          I’m 57. How old are you?

          I would opt for a judge instead of a jury if I were Edwards; I believe that’s his right.

          • brettearle

            I don’t trust 12 human beings.  I would always opt for a Judge, if I could.

            Now as to seniority.

            Because I have determined (very likely, accurately) that you are a pretty savvy/sharp guy, I believe that you have the emotional sophistication not to discern the following, from me, as a self-putdown of myself:

            About my age:

            “I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that it might tend to incriminate me.”

            What sort of fiction are you working on?

            [I asked you first.]

          • Terry Tree Tree

            LOL!

          • Brett

            I’m working on a series of short stories. These are finished (Well…): 1) A guy who suffers from gigantism, gives up, comes back to the living, as it were, to help someone in danger before he dies. 2) a child who perceives people with disabilities as monsters that she has to befriend to make people understand they are not to be feared but understood. 3) a writer who suffers from insomnia and can’t tell whether he is dreaming or in a waking world. 

            I’m also finishing a novella; a fictional account of my father’s Irish clan of a family.

          • brettearle

            Those ideas are too good to be revealed in public.

            Please don’t do it again.

            [I hereby sign a disclaimer that as a fellow writer I will honor your intrinsic copyright.

            To find a co-witness, I have gone to the world of the dead (no, I'm not copying you) to find Milton Berle, to be a signatory to my declaration.

            [Milton Berle, of course, was notorious for stealing Gleason's, Hope's, Caesar's, and George Gobel's 
            jokes].]

            (“].]”, by the way, is the accurate punctuation–but only if you let me get away with using brackets for parantheses.) 

            (Indeed, I am now beginning to use parantheses more accurately, here…..))))..)).).)

            How can I give you my email so that we can discuss fiction, non-publicly; wherein, I can you tell a bit about my own work….if you promise not to become nauseous, after I’m finished, introducing the great American masterpiece to a colleague.

          • Brett

            They are copyrighted anyway, except for the Irish clan thing. I used to be part of a couple of online writers’ groups. Now I’m more focused on staying true to my voice and vision and am less interested in strangers’ views. I do have an editor I’m working with now. She’s tough as nails too!. Actually I have to go just now. I’ll come back later. 

          • Azra

            Sorry to intude, Brett, but these all sound really good. To me, the third one is especially intriguing. Hope to hear every one of them on “Selected Shorts” , in the near future. Good luck.

  • TruthIsRelative

    John Edwards behavior was deplorable and I am embarrassed to have supported him in the past.  In spite of that I think that our prisons are overcrowded, and that jail time should be reserved for those who pose a true threat to society.  Edwards should be punished in other ways.

    • William

      That seems unfair for millions of average Americans that can’t afford high priced legal talent to get them off when they make a mistake. I have always felt the richer, more educated person should be held to a higher standard in the legal system than someone of lesser means and education.

  • ana

    Edwards strikes me as one ill equipped to step out onto the national stage. Certainly not VP or POTUS league. Unable to handle the pressures and temptations that arise, he easily succumbed to devious solutions.  He does not seem evil.
     What kind  individual runs for POTUS when the partner suffers with an aggresive, life threatening  disease.   A series of  “dumb”decisions” led to even “dumber” decisions.
     
    Unlike some others who deliberately set out to inflict harm, Edwards became entangled in his own web.      Justice needs to be served to be sure,  but thirty years seems too much.

  • Brett

    Only Gregg (and perhaps Still Here) would politicize this even more and expand it as an etiology for every real and contrived problem we face in our country today. Is Edward’s directly (and by extension Democrats) responsible for the “war on Christmas” too?

    • Gregg

      That’s absurd Brett. Please don’t tell me what I think.

      • Brett

        Why don’t you just call that rebuttal#3 or something (it’s that pat)…I wasn’t telling you what you think. Look at the sum of your comments on this topic this morning.

        • Gregg

          I think you should look at them. I have kept it to Edwards except to reply to distractions like this one. My comments have not projected anything on Democrats much less Christmas. I didn’t blame them for squat. I blamed Edwards for unnecessary c-sections but that is germane.Your comment was an absurd projection, AKA “telling me what I think”.

          • Brett

            Why your Edward’s quote on the Iraq war then? Please, again, you fool only yourself. BTW, the Christmas thing was intentionally absurd, but you know that. So why do you pretend you don’t understand? 

          • Gregg

            Scroll down to see how you were mistaken on the Iraq quote.

            My replies to you help me show the extent to which your hate leads you into the weeds in an attempt to make some point about me that has no basis. If you knew what I thought or debated my points instead of first telling me what they are then we might get somewhere. It seems very personal to you which really isn’t the purpose. My replies only serve to give you more rope.

            I’m happy to debate you honestly but I’m done responding to whatever vendetta is haunting you, it’s silly.

            Apologies to the blog for taking up space by replying to crap.

          • Brett

            Your apologies…hehe, such self-righteous crap.

          • Brett

            “I’m done responding to whatever vendetta is haunting you…” 

            Playing therapist now? Maybe stick to music and cleaning out horse stables.

      • Brett

        Are you suggesting you are not using this topic for more of your partisan political drivel? Fool! ;-)

  • Mike in PA

    Tom – Don’t forget that the two people who gave/donated the money are not testifying.  One has passed away and the other is unable to testify due to health and age.

    Have the given any testimony?

    My suspicion is that either the prosecutor filed charges when he or she thought that those individuals would be able to testify.  But any competent attorney would at least want to get those persons on the record (or at least a written statement).

    If not, I doubt that Edwards would be being prosecuted on these charges on this testimony, alone, if he were not such a powerful figure.

  • Eric Silvernale

    Why does it matter if he knew he was breaking the law? Last I checked, ignorance of the law is not a reasonable defense…

  • Guest

    Can’t we broaden this issue further?  I would like to know why we should have campaign financing at all?  Why can’t we give every candidate equal air time and a fixed budget, and let the best candidate win without the factor of money and outside interest which distort democracy?

    Plenty of these problems will just go away if we ban ALL campaign financing, set equal air time for each candidate, and fix their budget to a modest amount.  

    I want my candidate to win the presidency, but I also want this painful overexposed election process to be over!!

  • http://twitter.com/mjhall Matthew J Hall

    To answer the posted question: “do we want to criminalize a run for high office?” – I am not for criminalization BUT if someone has broken the law, regardless of social position, political level, justice must be served.

  • Robbie

    Although I think Edwards is a morally bankrupt sleazeball, I fail to see how money given directly to him by a personal friend is somehow a being labeled a campaign contribution.
    I agree with all the other posters on here. The feds should go after real criminals like Bush, the Wall St criminals and other people whose actions directly affect our lives.
    These show trials are a waste of my tax dollars and everyone’s time.

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    Sinner in the hands of an angry electorate. . .

  • J__o__h__n

    Too bad for Edwards that he didn’t cover up the affair after Citizens United.  His aide could have founded a PAC and then paid the mistress off as long as he didn’t coordinate it with the candidate. 

  • Robbie

    Citizens United is no different from what Edwards did. 

    • ana

      Please explain. 

  • Mike in PA

    But Bunny CANNOT testify!  What she thought at the time when she gave the money is entirely hearsay!

  • Yachtsman

    John Edwards is a sorry example of a human being. That being said, I find it interesting that the government can spend thousands prosecuting a tawdry act while they can’t find time, money or effort to prosecute those responsible for bring the US and the world to the brink of financial ruin.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      The KILLERS in corporations?  MANY other more important things, this is DISTRACTING from?

    • Patrik

      Because the money, which would pay for the time and effort for that, would come from those individuals…

  • Robbie

    I read the indictment and it seems like such a disingenuous reach. Prosecutors in this case are making up the law out of thin air. They can’t retroactively decide that a personal gift is a campaign contribution. Edwards is a morally bankrupt man, however, I don’t think he broke any laws.

  • David Moschella

    The big story here is the way the mainstream media ignored the Edwards story for so long.  This allowed Edwards to stay in the race long enough to divide the democratic field and give Obama time to make his case.  If the media had done its job, Hillary would probably be president today.  The idea that these payments weren’t part of the campaign is absurd.

    • Jefferson

      David is right on point.  The media (including NPR) neglected this story because Edwards was a media darling who could do no wrong.  He was attractive, articulate, very liberal, and had shiney teeth – nothing else mattered.  If this level of corruption had happened to McCain or Palin, the liberal media vultures would have eaten them for dinner and spit out the bones.  Let’s have equal reporting for all.

  • Jim_in_Fort_Mill_SC

    Tom:

    The evidence is that the late Mrs. Edwards knew about this affair. As is usually the case, most wives know when their husbands are doing them wrong.  What is at issue here is that Edwards was hiding his affair and pregnant girlfriend from the public-the voters-all while he was indeed still running for President.  Hello could it be clearer?  If it isn’t against the law it should be.  I have my doubts that the vast amjority of men who make and enforce the laws would make having an affair and hiding your pregnant from the public illegal.

    jim thompson,fort mill,sc

  • Robbie

     What Bunny Mellon “was told” is hearsay and therefore inadmissible. Unless she testifies, there is no way anybody can know what the knew or didn’t know about how her gift would be used.
    This whole trial is a farce and the Govt is coming dangerously close to abuse of process.

  • Terry Tree Tree

    Some interesting points being brought up in the show!

  • susanr48

    Listening to Mr. Dellinger, it seems that the crux of the matter is whether the jury, or perhaps the judge on a motion for summary judgment, decides that the contributions were meant to influence the election by concealing the existence of the affair and pregnancy.
    Influence the election?  That’s a stretch for me,but not necessarily for the jury.

     However, the judge may decide that the crime doesn’t fit the facts, and the case may never go to  the jury.

  • Belle Adler

    Any why would Bunny Mellon need to help John Edwards financially? He’s a millionaire himself….

  • debhulbh

    This goes to the whole question of Americas obsession with imprisoning people. First time Nonviolent offenders, get huge sentences. Doctors, lawyers, locked away, locked up, who does this serve? whatever happened to community service, taking their money away. But who does it serve to lock up these men in prison? It serves none. 30 years?? give me a break.
    This man was unfaithful to his wife, betrayed his family. He must bear this shame publicly. What is it with you Americans, that you MUST have your POUND OF FLESH? Where is your compassion and humanity. Fine him, publicly disgrace him, fine but locking him away in prison for 30 years? It is disgusting, shame on all people who call for such things. Be careful what you call for, it may some day come back in your lap.

    • RChicago

       I’d be fine with taking his money.

      It’s ridiculous for taxpayers to spend money to imprison someone like this. I’m all for the money and community service.

      • JGC

        Maybe justice could be a huge fine, community service and house arrest in Elizabeth Edwards’s 28,200 sq.ft. dream home. Oops. Sorry, John.
        I’ve already convicted you; luckily I’m not on your jury. 

      • Azra

        So am I.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    Crucifying one person for a crime while ignoring thousands who committed crimes is not justice.

  • J__o__h__n

    Why are politicians able to receive gifts of such a significant amount of money?  That is even more of a bribe than campaign contributions? 

    Edwards wasn’t short of money in his personal life unless he needed to hide transactions.  Bunny either meant to give to his campaign or knew it was being used to cover something up.

  • john_sease

    Do you think that John Edwards would have paid income tax if he really thought the money was a GIFT?

  • http://twitter.com/cwooley89 Charles Wooley

    Wouldn’t covering up his extramarital affairs be a good use of campaign contributions??
    Probally more effective dollar for dollar than attack ads

  • Guest

    One of the most disappointing and illuminating parts of the Edwards spectacle is that the main stream media knew of his infidelity and hid it.  It took the National Enquirer to bring the story to the public.  The New York Times printed unsupported allegations of a John McCain affair, yet sat on the story of John Edwards and Rielle Hunter.  It might make a skeptical person think that the MSM was trying to influence the election.

  • Robbie

    Perhaps the Justice Dept should start policing the Congressional revolving door rather than personal behavior. Put the Wall St Fraudsters in jail. Not a dude who cheated on his wife. 

  • Colmroge

    I agree with the caller before the break.

    Mark Foley is not in jail (underage boys).  Who from the Big Branch Mine is in jail?  Who from Wall Street is in jail?  Will any of the BP execs go to jail?  Is Alberto Gonzalez in jail?  The list goes on and on.
    Now ‘the law’ is going after John Edwards and Roger Clemens.  Is there nothing better?  An illegal immigrant gets murdered by federal employees and it’s caught on camera … that was just a temporary blip on the media merry-go-round … it’s all nuts!!!!!

  • Patrik

    What the ‘who cares’ caller means is that nature of people will never change, people are going to be people.  Sometimes (chuckle) those people run for political office, sometimes they are caught doing wrong and sometimes they are never caught…Being a candidate for leadership does/will not change that, not even in Amuurica.

  • Martimu

    John Edwards is a total SKANK and wasn’t seeking to protect his marriage but to protect the PUBLIC APPEARANCE of his ‘marriage’.

    • Martimu

      That said – I’m guessing this isn’t the right avenue to persecute him – let him loose and let us gleefully lambast him!

  • Drew (GA)

    I agree with all of the callers today, thanks so much for your collective input!

  • Mark

    I know that your last caller didn’t get it, that he was “just” a candidate; but some of us actually believed that he could make a difference [and fooled by his moral code].  I’ve met him, canvassed for his cause, even gave money.  Now, the only reason I hadn’t thrown away a picture I have with him at one of his rallies, is to remind me how I got duped. 

    • Drew (GA)

      It’s wrong you were misled, I know how you feel. That doesn’t mean this Crusade is justified.

  • Gregg

    I guess the thing that bothers me the most is how plain the sleaziness of John Edwards was to see. His record as a lawyer illustrated it clearly. He was not vetted and was a fake. His “two America’s” theme was emotional divisiveness not policy. And that hair thing….

  • J__o__h__n

    He took the money.  It was a benefit to either him or his campaign.  The money was given to support him because he was a political candidate and would be making public policy if elected.  It shouldn’t matter if he used it to pay for ads, cover up an affair, or get daily $1,000 haircuts. 

  • Ewissner

    why didn’t he just spend his own money?  

    • Azra

      Indeed. The mind boggles. Why didn’t Newt?
      These questions shall remain unanswered.

  • debhulbh

    American currently has more prisoners in its system than at Stalins gulag.. 6 million! whether they are incarcerated or going through the system, in probation or otherwise, 6 million! Don’t we have enough men and women in our prison system. It is disgraceful that some feel the need to lock away and forget about these people. So many of those currently in prison are first time nonviolent offenders with huge sentences for their FIRST offense, give me a break. Anyone, ANYONE who calls for this man to go to prison is on a personal vendetta, trying to make a ?? point. I don;t get the inhumanity surrounding looking for him to go to prison for 30 years, lets look at the bigger question of calling for huge sentences, absurdly large sentences. Other civilized countries DO NOT seek huge sentences. American catch up, with humanity and in the compassion arena. Shame on our just-ice?? system, pushing lengthy sentences. ANother point is that private companies make money off of the backs of these men in prison, first time non-violent offenders have filled are filling up our prisons and men are wasting away, getting no services, no education while in prison. We should be spending the money that is being wasted on this trial on programs and education for those incarcerated, this serves the public to a much higher degree. I say, stop calling for things you could never endure, 30 years in prison? could you endure it? likewise stop calling for wars unless you are prepared to stand on the frontline and see your child blown to pieces, get real America, get REal. Stop the madness, stop calling for absurd and outrageous out of touch sentences, lacking in humanity. 

    • Azra

      I can’t even bear to think of all the millions of prisoners who have been wrongly convicted; innocents who might have had bright futures ahead of them, who might have made immeasurable contributions to the Country. Many have already had their lives snuffed out, many other innocents who have been sentenced to death, will never have the chance to be proven innocent. They will continue to spend the rest of their dreary days wondering about the life that might have been, the family they might have had, and all the things they will never be able to do.

  • Thinkin15

    Edwards is just a symbol of a huge segment of American men. In this case the prosecution seems to be more political than not. John Ensign goes free??!! And let’s not forget the women who get involved, usually for the lure money and life style. Just a symptom of narcissistic behavior that is now mostly considered acceptable by society.

  • brettearle

    How far would this potential prosecution have gone–if Edwards, after (or even during) his presidential bid, had left his wife to marry another woman with whom he had had an affair, during his Bid; left a spouse who was not critically ill, in order to marry this other woman; did not sire a child; and still used the money for the same reasons and under the same circunstances….regardless of whether the Prosecutor had a political grudge against the defendant?

  • Badolliecat

    You know, Dick Cheney is still at large even after altering CIA papers and mapping out a lie to invade Iraq.
    This illegal invasion not only murdered innocents, and by innocents that also includes our troops as they are not to be put into harms way unless it is ultimately necessary.  They were put into harms way by way of a lie from an oil corporate, who made his way to the vice presidency.
    This ILLEGAL war, based on a vice president’s lies, also added to the financial burden that we are all now facing.
    There is a book that maps out how to prosecute that administration but no one bothers.
    Why?

    • Azra

      Spain began an investigation years ago. Hope it won’t be very much longer til he’s in prison.

  • marym

    Ick!.. The whole thing makes me feel like taking a bath!!

    • JGC

      Yes, all this talk about clandestinely paid paramours is making me feel very…what’s the word?…vitterish.

  • Brett

    Gregg, you seem to reply to a lot of distractions for someone only here for honest debate.

    • Gregg

      Now you’re getting it Brett, thank you. Outing distractions as irrelevant, unnecessary or silly is essential to honest debate. 

      Here’s the irony, it seems most here agree Edwards is sleazy. The distraction is the desperate attempt to excuse these actions by citing other bad actions, but I’ll admit “excuse” may be a bit harsh. Logic would dictate every instance has a thousand different variables and implications making them completely incomparable. They certainly don’t break down by party and either side that makes that argument is not on solid ground. This is expounded when the comparisons are extended to wars. The next thing you know, the projections start flying and the reductio ad absurdum arguments ensue. This lack of focus is a huge distraction. The cesspool of data is bottomless; the discussion quickly becomes pointless. And that’s before the name calling. 

      Isn’t the point here that a man of such character rose to such prominence? It is very clear the media, at the very least, were not interested and at worst covered it up. The National Enquirerer told the truth while the MSM hid it. That’s embarrassing. Compare it to the treatment of  Herman Cain with far less evidence. Or compare it to John McCain where there was virtually no evidence. Edwards’ record as a trial lawyer and the changes on the medical industry his landmark cases had is well known here in NC. It was not explored in 2004 and should have been.

      We dodged a huge bullet by not putting John Edward a heartbeat from the Presidency. This trial is significant. Or should we talk about Iraq, child-raping clergy, Bush, Cheney, Newt, Albert Gonzalez, BP, the rich or the ol’ standby, me?  

  • Thinkin15

    Gingrich had a string of these affairs along with a string of questionable non-profit businesses and accounting practices. He’s still out there yapping and pontificating on how others should live.

    • Azra

      . . . and running for President!

  • Guest

    After listening to On Point for years, this morning I went
    to this website for the first time.  The
    premise of the radio segment is clearly stated, yet looking through these
    comments, a large number of them have a political agenda unrelated to the
    topic.   The radio program presents an
    objective discussion of the issues in the trial, but many if not most of the
    comments show frenzied and irrelevant partisanship.

    • brettearle

      We appreciate your blanket, sweeping put-down of our views.

      We understand that your sense of superiority is, unquestionably, morally and intellectually justified.

      I know I speak for everyone when I say that,

      we——-are——–chastened

      Please don’t take the time, to dig below the surface, to see how multi-dimensional our nuances truly are. 

      For if you did, there’d be a quiz.

      Class dismissed.

  • Brett Johnston

    They’re all crooks.  None of em could walk a straight line.

  • Bjornsdottiri

    Come on Tom. The John Edwards’ trial makes us look so third world!  We already are the third world.

    Look at the average age of Americans, the infant mortality rate,
    the number of prisoners, the death penalty, the lack of health insurance, the list is very long where the U.S. is right in line with third and fourth world countries.

    Tell me, what difference it there between Exxon cutting a million dollar check to the dictator of Nigeria and a million dollar Exxon check going the Romney election funds? Citizens United is nothing but legalized bribery. U.S. is the only supposedly civilized society were political bribery is legal. – Welcome to the third world!

    • Sam Walworth

       You did not include our Public School system in your finger pointing

    • brettearle

      While US society has a great deal to answer for, your outrage exaggerates how bad we are, by comparison to the rest of the countries of the world.

      We certainly are not as strong, in so many ways, by comparison to 50 years ago. 

      But we are still far ahead of many other countries in economic strength, infant mortality, the justice system, and health care.

      That having been said, as a Liberal Democrat, I am outraged by some of the changes that are occurring, in this country, as the result of political ignorance and even political fanaticism.

      But your claims are couched in the form of a semi-rant–and your cogent arguments might get lost on those who might erroneously mistake you for Abbie Hoffman.

  • Sam Walworth

    I absolutely cannot fathom the thinking of John Edwards to engage in such pathetic manner.

    Running for the president, during presidential campaign he chooses to engage in an illicit affair, and it just was not a one night stand, it continued, to the level that he fathered a child with the lady and if rumors are true, made an official video of the sexual intercourse and finally  everything started to blow, he chose to lie till the end.

    It simply defies the logic of a common sense.

    • Azra

      No pun intended, I’m sure.

    • brettearle

      Shows you how far the dark side of arrogance can go.

      I think you’re underestimating what human beings are capable of, under certain conditions and circumstances–regardless of cultural background, upbringing, etc.

      As JFK said, “We all breathe the same air.”

      He should have also said that “We all face the same moral dilemmas.”

      • Sam Walworth

           Bretterle,

        I think you are misunderstanding me.

        When you know that, running for president means ultra high focus from
        all the media who will no doubt would LOVE to shred you into pieces
        that will get analyzed and over analyzed  till “kingdom come” any step
        like that is simply a suicide mission.

        I can understand if he had a one night stand, or an affair, but going
        ahead and making a video about it, and fathering a child with her (for
        goodness sake, get a vasectomy) and then lying about it over and over
        and over all the while he knew that the consequences are really really
        bad.

        Thats what I mean it just defies common sense.

        Its like you know it if one does a Drink and Drive over the limit,
        its too much at stake, and yet still goes ahead and do it, the only
        difference is, in OUI/DUI cases, the person who must make the decision
        to drive is incapacitated under the influence of alcohol, where as Mr.
        Edwards was continuing his sand castle as long as it went.

        Thats what concerns me.

      • Sam Walworth

         Yes I totally agree.

        However all dont face the same consequences or results of the misdeeds.

        He had simply too much at stake and yet chose to gamble it away.

  • Dhr75

    According to news reports John Edwards’ wealth was taken from the healthcare system. 

    • Gregg

      His thing was accusing doctors of causing Cerebral Palsy by not doing C-sections. He worked his charm on 40 or 50 cases at a million a pop. Dramatic, heart-wrenching closing arguments were his specialty. It turns out there is no evidence to back up his accusations. He made his fortune by preying on the emotions of parents of children with Cerebral Palsy.

      • twenty-niner

        Yes, Edwards has been despicable since the day he was born. Maybe that’s why he specialized in suing OB/GYNs, because the unfortunate OB/GYN who got him through the birth canal unscathed did the world a huge disservice.

        It’s going to be interesting to see how that charm gets him through a few years in the joint. My guess is it wont work too well on the other prisoners.

        • Gregg

          Being a pretty boy has it’s downside.

          • jimino

            Maybe he can share a cell with that other notorious criminal, Roger Clemens.  Both prosecutions are political dog and pony shows while real perpetrators attend the Milken Institute conference.

      • Brett

        For you to truly confidently make such claims about these 40 or 50 cases would mean that a) you have a strong background in law, in particular medical malpractice law and b) that you’ve studied the transcripts of these 40 or 50 cases and have scrutinized them carefully and c) that you know there was no evidence presented by him in these cases (seems unlikely considering he won those cases). Additionally, what, specifically, can you cite that actually proves he “preyed on the emotions of parents…” in these cases? 

        Cerebral Palsy is caused by lack of oxygen during the birthing process. Any disability caused by complications during the birthing process should be scrutinized, particularly CP. A breach birth, if handled properly, should not in and of itself cause a disability. If there is a delay due the doctor waiting too long for natural labor to fully take its course in a birth that has complications resulting in a disability for the baby, would that not indicate possible malpractice, or at least the potential for malpractice to have occurred? Or perhaps warrant bringing a lawsuit against the doctor? What would you do as a parent in such a circumstance? 

        He did more than accuse doctors of malpractice, it wouldn’t be false to say he presented enough evidence to win cases. At least there was some plausibility to his approach for him to have won cases. He may have used dramatic tactics in the court room, and he may have even injected emotion beyond a “just the facts” approach. Lawyers do use such devices. Do you have a medical background in addition to a law background? I say this because you seem confident in implying there was no basis for bringing those suits, both medically and legally. 

        More likely, you read some of the blog forums on this topic (found by the “googling” link you presented) that basically took a NYT’s article and wove opinion around excerpts of the article, and you are parroting the opinions found on those blogs. They are blogs, after all.  

        Do you think c-sections are over-performed? 

        So what is your point, really, Gregg? How have you come by your opinions on these 40 or 50 cases? By having a medical and law background and studying these cases intently? Or has your opinion been developed by the opinions of other nonprofessionals who wish to draw similar conclusions?

        I’m not defending Edwards or his tactics, and I’m not even defending performing c-sections over allowing natural labor in certain circumstances, but I don’t think you have enough genuine professional knowledge about those cases to offer  an informed opinion; it does seem your comment is opinion based. An opinion developed without utilizing any particular expertise of the disciplines that would need to be engaged to comment on such matters.  

        • Gregg

          Actually it was 94 but who’s counting? No, I haven’t read the transcripts but I was here in the mid 80′s following it. It was big news around here especially in the Charlotte Observer which I subscribed to. My mother is a RN and midwife (and Democrat) who has no love for Edwards. We’ve talked about it a lot as did she with her peers. The consequences were dramatic. Cesarean births rose by 40%. The science ultimately disproved his claims empirically. That was news too. You will be hard pressed to find anyone in the medical or law professions to defend what he did. Try.

          So, I’m not a doctor or lawyer but I am informed by countless opinions of those who are. I am far from alone with my opinion. Could I be wrong? Sure, maybe he’s a hero but I’d bet against it. I’m entitled to my informed opinion.

          • Brett

            What were his claims beyond the specific lawsuits he tried? Cite the science that disproved those claims he specifically made beyond the suits. Was he saying in those cases that c-sections in general are preferable to natural childbirth or was he saying that not performing  c-sections in those specific instances caused harm? which is very different. You make it sound like his thrust was to make c-sections more popular than natural childbirth. I’m sorry, but an RN and midwife with an opinion is not very impressive. My sister is an obstetrician and she disagrees with you.

            You did attempt a straw man of sorts by making it a case of either he’s a hero or an unscrupulous lawyer. How ’bout neither. 

            Why is it that the only person who thinks your comments have merit consistently is Still Here? Other than that I don’t find anyone ever really agreeing with you. Does that tell you something? 

          • Gregg

            Check again with your sister, my mother spent 30+ years delivering babies. that is before and after Edwards impact. Surely your sister knows the truth.

            He claimed doctors were ignoring heart monitors and waiting too long before a c-section was performed.

            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14586368?dopt=Abstract
            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12634632?dopt=Abstract

            You will find no mention of C-sections as a cause at CPU

            http://affnet.ucp.org/ucp_generaldoc.cfm/1/9/37/37-37/447

          • Gregg

            I agree on various issues with many here. It’ funny I don’t remember Still Here overtly agreeing with me but I agree with him most of the time. I find Ray delightful and we mostly disagree but not always. JonS and Greg Camp have given me props once or twice as I have them.  Gotta love Notafeminista and Gretchen Mo. Ellen dibble is quite respectable as well and on occasion we see eye to eye. I always pay attention to her comments. I think Jimino, J_o_h_n and TFRX are kind of snarkey but I respect their opinions as they are usually based on something intelligent. I’ve agreed with all of them from time to time. TomK goes either way too. I think BrettEarle and I have agreed as well, he seems fair enough. I love AJ and he is as overtly and militantly outspoken as hard core lefties come. He hits hard but is honest. I respect that.

            The only ones who are just plain nasty with never a kind word are NJ and ulTRAX. And now you are joining them but I still have hope for you.

            So, I feel as comfortable as possible in this liberal bastion. It wouldn’t make much sense to preach to the choir so I’m here. I’m happy to let my comments speak for themselves.

      • jimino

        I guess in your world doctors are never negligent and cause damage to their patient.  You know, if we had universal health care, the medical malpractice field would by and large go by the wayside, since most monetary damages are for future lifelong  health care for very young people, which is why OB/Gyn’s are the most common defendants.

        • Gregg

          I wish tort reform had been addressed in Obamacare but it wasn’t. And no, that’s not my world. 

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Tobbacco company executives LIED about the damage they were doing, for DECADES!
           The physician that did my ex-wife’s hysterectomy did damage, and we couldn’t get a doctor to testify against him, although they said he was at fault ‘off the record’!
           Did Edwards have THAT many clients, with Cerebral Palsy children?   WHAT actually caused it?   Did Edwards know at the time, or was he being fed ‘information’?
           MOST people want a persuasive attorney on their side.  Charm and good looks, to sway the jury helps.
           WHAT did he get for his clients?  On contingency?  More questions?

    • brettearle

      You mean malpractice suits?

      Do you have any idea how many such suits ultimately may save lives–because other MDs become more conscientous?

      That having been said, there ARE frivolous suits….even if they first go before a tribunal and then on to ajudication.

  • Free Palestine

    I have no sympathy for John Edwards.  Had he become President, he would have been another in a long line of sock puppets in the White House who would have looked the other way, while 1.5 million innocent Palestinians are subjugated to live in cruel, concentration camp like conditions in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

    GOD BLESS THE PALESTINIANS.

    • brettearle

      God Bless the Palestinians

      as well as

      God Bless the Israelis

    • brettearle

      Your picture of the plight of the Palestinians–as if the Israelis are total monsters–is darkly biased and, at once, without any semblance of proper information and education.

      Israeli policy has a great deal to answer for, I agree.

      But Israel and the Middle East have an ugly legacy of ethnic hatred on many sides; an irreconcilability of historical viewpoints; policy-conflict including East Jerusalem, border and water rights, settlements, etc; Jihadist clans of many kinds who have less of a commitment to Palestinian territorial and human rights, but more of a blind desire to eradicate the Jews, etc.  etc….

      not the least of which, also includes a Middle East country who is likely developing nuclear weapons and has sworn to destroy the Jewish state.

      I doubt, even in private, that Israel has made a similar vow. 

      I carried the argument, further, I agree–on a program topic that has NOTHING to do with the Middle East.

      But I simply could not let you get away with your self-righteous rant.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Well put!  Good analysis of SOME of the ‘disagreements’ between Isralis and Palestineans.
            It’s FAR more complex, than MANY want to state it.
            Thanks for putting some balanced consideration on the subject!

        • brettearle

          Thanks!

    • William

      Why should Americans consider Palestinians anything more than a bunch of bomb throwing thugs? What exactly do they bring to the table besides death?

      • brettearle

        Hey, wait a second.

        Both sides are at fault.

        Both sides have rights.

        Why do you need to demonize one side and then disregard the problems caused by the other side?

        Your extreme reaction does nothing but enflame:

        That’s the whole problem in a micro-nutshell, my friend.

  • Gregg

    I find the Chicago Tribune article interesting. I’m guessing there will be boycotts, round the clock coverage and outrage from the President because Edwards referred to Hunter as a “crazy slut”.  We can call it a “war on women” and get Sandra Fluke to be 
    General.

    • jefe68

      “ Outing distractions as irrelevant, unnecessary or silly is essential to honest debate.”
      Gregg

      OK I’ll out yours, the above comment comes under all of the above.

      • Gregg

        Dude, it’s on the top of the page in the shows description! I don’t decide the topic. Edwards used terms On Point did entire shows on. He had no respect for women but he was pro-choice so it’s cool. I give On Point credit and look forward to the show at 7PM.

        • Gregg

          Further, if the MSM had given a fraction of the outrage to the VP nominee as they did some radio guy, they would have more credibility. To me, the media is compliant in the Edwards scandal. 

          • Brett

            So, you’ve used this topic to obliquely say something less than desirable about Obama, Eric Holder, medical malpractice lawsuits, mainstream media…hmm, sounds like partisan political opportunism to me. Does anyone else see a pattern? I’ll admit, you have more nuance than Still Here or U.S. Veteran, etc., but that’s not saying much.

          • Gregg

            I didn’t bring up Holder, novellas, short stories or  copyrights. Nor did I call any one names or get personal. I have been marvelously easy on Obama today. I have not had any thing I wrote refuted on merits. I have been one of the most on topic commenters today. I even took one of your comments seriously and gave a thoughtful reply, what a waste of time that was. I’ll quit while I’m ahead and give you a chance to reflect.

          • brettearle

            What will you do with yourself, when the President is re-elected?

            Will you need smelling salts?

            Or shall we assume that you’ll go into a Van Winkle sleep, until 2016–when Evan Bayh becomes President?

          • Brett

            I’m hoping for the Van Winkle thingy, but does it have to end in 2016?

          • Brett

            Man, I wouldn’t mind talking to you about writing, but I wouldn’t recommend either of us give out his e-mail. 

          • brettearle

            I know how we can do it….even if I give you “instructions” , publicly, as to how we can do it; no one will  be able to find out… if you’re willing to follow some very
            benigninstructions 

          • Gregg

            I will be very sad, scared and surprised. I don’t know about smelling salts, perhaps a stiff drink.

          • Brett

            Brettearle asked me a question; I answered. 

            You never think anything anyone ever writes in reply to you can refute you on merit, no matter how well they dismantle what you are saying. So many have proven that over and over. It’s truly amazing.

          • Gregg

            Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s beautiful, I’m not the one complaining about off topic posts.

            The refute the merits they first must be addressed.

          • Azra

            Think it would be great if you two had a morning radio program. What do you say?

          • StillHere

            Friend, I just invented a drinking game where everyone here takes a drink when you use the word nuance.  I think we’ll all be three sheets before the whistle blows.

            I was going to say whenever you used nuance in the positive context of a conservative’s opinion, but that wasn’t going to be much fun given you only use the world liberally…  I hope you find the layers and nuances in this post.

          • Brett

            Maybe if you see the word in context enough, eventually you’ll understand what it means. We can all tell that you are already three sheets to the wind…You’re too easy. 

          • StillHere

            It might help make sense of your senseless posts. God knows we’ve tried everything else.  

            Keep your thesaurus handy, we’re easily impressed.

        • Azra

          What does something edwards said to his aide have to do with President Obama? Please explain. Don’t ignore this. We would love to know. Thanks.

          • Gregg

            I was referring to the fact that President Obama weighed in on the Sandra Fluke thing. Did he not? It was feigned outrage and that was my point. Hope that helps.

          • Azra

            Yes, it does help, but in which way do the two compare?

          • Azra

            Should have been “can the two be compared”.

          • Gregg

            They don’t really Azra. They just show the double standard. I was illustrating absurdity with absurdity.

          • Azra

            Still don’t get the double standard. One is an extremely brave woman, who was attacked for defending women’s rights. The other is a . . . she seduced a very weak married man. The two incidents are not even remotely in the same category.

      • Brett

        As if he’s on some crusade…what a crock, eh? He’s a super hero of sorts. Calling out distractions, shaping honest debate in a single bound. Yet he’ll make sure he replies with an “absolutely” to a negative comment about Eric Holder.

        Up in the sky, it’s a bird, a plane, no, it’s super Gregg! 

        • Gregg

          “Crusade”, “super-hero”, SUPER GREGG!!!

          I like it.

          PS. Holder is coming up on contempt charges. I can’t wait for the “Fast and Furious” show.

          • Brett

            What does that have to do with Edwards? Are you going to “out” yourself? 

          • Gregg

            #7

          • Azra

            . . . except that you’re an athiest. Can it still b a crusade, I wonder?

    • Azra

      President Obama has nothing to do with, or any control over, what John Edwards says. If an aplology is indeed warranted, (it may not be), it should come from Edwards himself.

  • Sam Walworth

     Bretterle,

    I think you are misunderstanding me.

    When you know that, running for president means ultra high focus from all the media who will no doubt would LOVE to shred you into pieces that will get analyzed and over analyzed  till “kingdom come” any step like that is simply a suicide mission.

    I can understand if he had a one night stand, or an affair, but going ahead and making a video about it, and fathering a child with her (for goodness sake, get a vasectomy) and then lying about it over and over and over all the while he knew that the consequences are really really bad.

    Thats what I mean it just defies common sense.

    Its like you know it if one does a Drink and Drive over the limit, its too much at stake, and yet still goes ahead and do it, the only difference is, in OUI/DUI cases, the person who must make the decision to drive is incapacitated under the influence of alcohol, where as Mr. Edwards was continuing his sand castle as long as it went.

    Thats what concerns me.

    • brettearle

      Sam,
       
      Your comments are quite cogent and articulate.
       
      But I did not misunderstand you.
       
      While I probably shouldn’t compare Edwards to Timothy McVeigh, I will anyway.
       
      McVeigh, presumably, plotted a rather brazen attack for quite sometime……and yet he was apprehended for NOT HAVING A LICENSE PLATE ON HIS GETAWAY CAR.
       
      McVeigh wasn’t simply stupid; he was literally incriminating himself–with something that he could have EASILY FIXED.
       
      While it is not directly analogous, I think that you are OVERESTIMATING the integrity and the behavior of men and women who have amazing professional success and/or have reached public positions among the highest in the land.
       
      If one has a certain dark side aspect to his character
      –wherein he/she is feeding it and is therefore in denial about it, it can surely spring out of control, such that the `perpetrator’ continues to be in denial, thinks not–TRULY SERIOUSLY–of the consequences (even if he tries to shabbily cover it up).
       
      You’re giving Edwards too much credit.
       
      His prodigious ambition was obvious to many of us, when he was a candidate opposing Clinton, Dodd, Obama, etc.

      But it simply spun out of control.

      To not recognize what ambition can do to the most well-intended individuals is to underestimate the limits of human endeavor.

      Gingrich, Clinton, Nixon, etc.

      Not to mention the worst culprits of power, such as Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, Bashir from Sudan etc.

      Humans are the same, everywhere.

      They don’t have to live in the United States–but they could and they do.

    • Gregg

      It’s worth noting that he did get away with it long enough to get the nomination. 

  • Meredith

    Melanie Sloan’s comment about the gift tax being paid on the money ends the case for me,as angry as I feel about John Edwards. I am also curious about what kind of taxes the Youngs ended up paying. Are they being charged with tax evasion,since they ended up with a lot of the money? 
    My husband and I were thrilled with Edwards to begin with. What happened made me think that as long as we stay with the same system,each new candidate’s programs are just rearranging the furniture in the same room and calling it a new room. 

  • J__o__h__n

    Why not punish him with a creative sentence instead of jail time – make him go to Super Cuts.

    • Osullivan

      love it! 

    • Azra

      . . . for the rest of his life.

    • Gregg

      Comment of the day!

    • Azra

      Five stars!

  • U.S. Vet.

    While we’re on the topic of prosecuting crimes,
     
    Barack Obama and Atty. General Eric Holder must be prosecuted for their roles in Operation ‘Fast and Furious’.

    The Obama / Holder approved program where thousands of AK47 assault rifles were sold to Mexican drug cartels, which resulted in three U.S. Border Patrol agents being killed as a result.

    Obama and Holder must answer for their crimes in a court of law.

    The families of the three slain U.S Border Patrol agents demand that Obama and Holder face justice.

    • Azra

      That’s right. There’s never been a more gun-happy President.

    • JGC

      According to the Wall Street Journal, the origin of Operation Fast and Furious was its “brilliant” precursor, Operation Wide Receiver in 2006-2007.  Therefore, Bush and his attorney general at that time, Roberto Gonzalez should also be hauled into the same court of law. It has taken years to discover and unwind Bush’s hare-brained schemes.  

      Speaking of hare-brained schemes (or is it hair-brained schemes-maybe his barber would know?), let’s now return to The Adventures of John Edwards…  

      • Gregg

        Communism’s origin was a beautiful idea. When the rubber met the road, not so much. That doesn’t mean the idea wasn’t beautiful. If Bush or Gonzalez are responsible for deaths,especially if the “good intentions” were to discredit the 2nd Amendment (unacceptable for the President) then I say hang them from the highest tree. I have seen no evidence to suggest such. Maybe Democrats were just letting Bush slide when they controlled the committees. NOT!

    • Gregg

      With the House oversight committee beginning the no-brainer contempt charges, more guns being found, death, the multiple Friday night document dumps and the blackout by the press one would think “Fast and Furious” would be an excellent topic for “On Point”. So far, no. I can’t imagine why, especially when you consider the track record of race based outrage from the chief law enforcement officer of the land. And on that note, he says the criticism of his shameful record is racism.

      Sure it is.

      • Still Here

        I think it would make Tom uncomfortable.  He might not be able to interrupt as much.

  • KGH

    No I do not think he deserves prison time.  A personal loan from whoever can be used for whatever reasons.  The campaign laws are not clear.  You can call him a liar, a louse, swarmy or slick (as people called Bill Clinton) but if he’s on trial for not keeping his pants zippered then you would probably have to put just about every man in prison.  Does anyone really know what kind of marriage he had with Elizabeth?  No! And no one needs to judge their personal life. This is certainly not a criminal issue.  This is outrageous!

  • buffalobirdie

    Sorry, off topic. I just can’t listen to Tom Ashbrook anymore. He constantly interrupts his guests for no reason. Let them answer! He’ll ask one question, and then blurt out another before the guest has even answered the first one. He simply LOVES to interject what he knows about the topic, “Ooo! I know! I know!”
    Shhhhhh!!!  I am interested in what YOUR GUEST has to say, NOT YOU!  He constantly commits the first sin of reporting and that is to lead a guest’s answer after asking the question.  Tom asks the question and then instead of stopping there, he ALWAYS follows with his formulated incessant breathless run-on:  “So, is it this? Is it that? Is it something else? What? He does this over and over and over and over again.  Diane Rehm is SOO MUCH BETTER – even with her speech issue. I could listen to her for hours.  Ok. Sorry, I had to get this off my chest! I feel better now.

    • brettearle

      You are WAY off…

      Ashbrook’s one of the best in the business–and everyone knows it.

      While it’s true he can interrupt and can give out leading cues, so to speak, it is Tom’s job to get as much information out there as possible–via guests and callers…in a confined amount of time.

      The show is 45 minutes long, not 60 mintes.   Tom usually knows WHEN to interrupt.

      Tom’s breadth of general knowledge is deep and his intellect is even deeper.

      It is abundantly clear, to everyone who listens, that Tom Ashbrook spends an inordinate amount of time, preparing for every show.

      You……do…….not…….know…..what…….you…..are
      …..talking……about

      • brettearle

        PS,

        I’m not his mother….or his brother…..or his cousin…..or even a close friend…..nor a station plant….nor a reporter seeking an exclusive interview…..nor am I……

        • buffalobirdie

          Fact:  T.A. interrupts his guests all the time right in the middle when they are trying to make a point.  You may not care, but others who are really trying to learn something get very frustrated.

      • Azra

        I’ll second that, and so will just about every other listener. He IS one of the very best.

        Thanks, Tom. We love you.

      • buffalobirdie

        Well, that’s your opinion. I have mine. Some people agree with you, and some people agree with me.

  • Guest

    I agree that the whole system of campaign finance needs to be looked at very carefully.   And that this is a tawdry reflection on our society writ large.  I do not understand the intricacies of the law, but I do believe that he should be on trial.  I think we need to look at the circumstances, and his intent.  The core of the situation is that his intention was to be President, and it was under that rubric that he approached Bunny Mellon for funds.  It was because she had high political hopes for him that she gave him money.  I cannot imagine that anyone, other than a scam artist gets people to give them money for personal reasons.  There has to be a context.  The context for Edwards was his attempt to become President.
    The only reason that he needed to shelter Elizabeth Edwards from his affair was that he needed her to secure the nomination.  From his behaviour he was clearly not interested in preserving his family, merely his electability.In those broad terms, going to anyone, for any amount of money, was for the campaign.

  • JillontheLake

    I find this whole affair (pun intended) is an absolute joke given the billions of anonymous dollars allowed to buy our elections with the Republicans leading by a margin of 10 to 1. John Edwards and his penis have been punished enough.

    • Gregg

      According to those who have seen the video he has a lot to punish.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        TMI for me!

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Foreign Corporation ‘Citizens’ buying ‘OUR’ politicians?
         10:1?   LOTS of Foreign bought Republicans?

  • Erw0111

    If you pull questions from here – Would the contribution have happened even if solicited under a personal donation if he had not been running for office?

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Actual broadcast was 10:00 A.M.

  • Pingback: John Edwards On Trial

  • http://www.richardsnotes.org Richard

    I listened to this in my truck yesterday and I have to say, aside from a few hyperbolic comments by Tom it was an excellent show. Hampton and Melanie have clear and well thought out viewpoints. The case isn’t as cut and dry as I thought going into listening to this show. Excellent.

  • Joan

    Republican Double Standards again…..

    If anyone should be on trial today it should be Newt Gingrich 
    for waging an impeachable offensive against Bill Clinton while 
    he was having an affair with another woman and abandoning 
    his sick wife…

    And of course, those Republicans who are trying to buy their 
    way into American politics again (under Citizen United Act )
    to promote the plutocracy of US corporations world wide in violation of The US Constitution and The Bill Of Rights……

    Those are the screams that will be heard in the marketplace, 
    the Supreme Court , the US Congress and on American streets if Romney is ever elected….Joan

  • LP

    What a jerk… obviously the affair would have been exposed at some point and caused a scandal, so I think it was wrong of him to let people (even the “little guys”) make donations supporting him for any reason while covering up this information that would likely change people’s minds.

    That said, our jails are overcrowded and should only be for people who are a true danger to the public in terms of violence or drug trafficking. They should make Edwards use his personal fortune to pay back every dime donated to his campaign- put it toward campaign finance reform efforts, a cancer research organization, or even the national debt!

  • Pingback: Is There a Moral to John Edwards? — The Good Men Project

  • Jason___A

    I hope they hang this SOB.

  • Jason___A

    Edwards is a trial attorney….meaning he is a trained and skilled LIAR. He would tell you day was night so convincingly that your mom would believe him. He has proven himself to be a LIAR, without conscience, over and over. Absolutely nothing he says should be given any weight at all.

  • Jonathan Collins84

    John Edwards lied about his contributions he received and received illegal contributions. Just because campaign finance law is “hard to understand” we shouldn’t prosecute people for breaking these laws? Why do the laws allow for 30 years of jail time if it’s not a serious offense. How could anyone argue that Edwards should get NO jail time? Surely these are the same Democrats that were happy to see Tom Delay go to jail. More hypocrisy and letting Democrats off the hook from other fellow Democrats.

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