The Corner

The Local N.C. Press on the Edwards Affair

The Charlotte Observer takes up the John Edwards story, reporting that Edwards needs to “publicly address” the “love child” matter if he is to have a prominent role in the Democratic convention:

“He absolutely does have to (resolve it). If it’s not true, he has to issue a stronger denial,” said Gary Pearce, the Democratic strategist who ran Edwards’ 1998 Senate race. “It’s a very damaging thing. … The big media has tried to be responsible and handle this with kid gloves, but it’s clearly getting ready to bust out. If it’s not true, he’s got to stand up and say, ‘This is not true. That is not my child and I’m going to take legal action against the people who are spreading these lies.’ It’s not enough to say, ‘That’s tabloid trash.’”

The problem, the paper says, is that Edwards’ disinclination to answer questions about the matter has “allowed doubts to linger and political bloggers to speculate.” 

Two weeks ago, after the National Enquirer ran the story about the hotel liaison, he dismissed a reporter’s question in Houston and used the “tabloid trash” line.

Edwards brushed off a Charlotte Observer reporter in Washington last week: “Can’t do it now, I’m sorry.”His designated staffer for press contacts has not responded to e-mail requests for an interview.No one answered a reporter who rang a buzzer at the gate of Edwards’ Orange County home on Wednesday. Friends and former staffers refuse to comment now, though they helped Edwards last fall by dismissing the Enquirer story of a sexual relationship between Edwards and a campaign videographer when it initially broke.”Sorry cannot help you on this one,” wrote Jennifer Palmieri, a former top Edwards aide, in an e-mail.

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