Edwards Supporters - share the wealth

Kevin Kamberg

CQ Moneyline crunched some data and found that John Edwards' former donors broke for Obama over Clinton by a 2 to 1 margin, according to CQ Politics.

The analysis by CQ MoneyLine identified 287 former Edwards contributors who donated to Obama for the first time during his record-breaking $56 million month. Collectively, though, the former Edwards donors amounted to a small fraction of Obama’s haul, sending in $200,000. In comparison, Clinton banked $114,000 from 138 Edwards donors who had not given to her in past months as she piled up a personal-best $35 million in February.

That's interesting in an "obsessed with the horse race" sorta way. But it got me to thinking. Barack Obama just swung through our fine state and Bill Clinton is mid-swing with Hillary reportedly on her way. Even a casual reading of this blog reveals that the Obama/Clinton race is a favorite topic of... um... discussion. But my sense has been that Edwards was the candidate of choice of a significant portion of Blue Oregon readers and writers, perhaps even of a majority.

Kari was an Edwards guy. TJ over at LoadedOrygun was an Edwards guy. Ditto for bloggers Jack Bog, Sarah Lane and who knows how many others who read and comment here. Even our top two Senate candidates were both hardcore Edwards supporters.

John Edwards was my (close) second choice from the very beginning. I would have been very content to give him money and vote for him if that's what voters had chosen. But I was never really on the bandwagon in the same way that his strong supporters were and wouldn't presume to speak for them.

So how 'bout it, former Edwards guys and gals? My sense is that Oregon was one of John Edwards' strongest states in many respects, particularly moneywise, and I think you all deserve your own thread here to inform the rest of us what you are thinking and why. You all may well end up deciding this thing for either Barack or for Hillary.

You've seen what CQ Moneyline is saying. What have you done? Are you still holding out, waiting for either Hillary or Barack to close the deal? Have you given money to either? According to the CQ Politics piece, some former Edwards supporters have been giving money to both Obama and to Clinton. Has that been your choice too?

Comments

  • (Show?)

    I was an Edwards supporter. It had a lot to do with his issues around poverty, the poor and lower middle class, etc.

    However, once it started looking like Edwards wasn't going to do so well, I started researching more on the other two candidates, watching speeches, etc. And it didn't take long to see that Obama would be the way I'd go.

    Since then, I've given my only presidential candidate donation since I gave to Howard Dean. And it was to Obama.

  • Katherine Pfeiffer (unverified)
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    Like Jenni, I too supported Edwards for many of the reasons she cited and also, he supported public financing of campaigns.

    I supported Edwards in 2004 and I wanted to be consistent. After he dropped out, I didn't listen to speeches so much as much as I read their position papers.

    I've been now giving money monthly to Hillary.

  • caj (unverified)
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    I struggled throughout the first couple of months about who to support. My views are best shared by Kucinich, but he was too out there to win. Edwards was next for me, but it seemed that he could not get any momentum to overtake the frontrunners. So I had to take a good look at Hillary and Barack.

    I became concerned with the sudden hero worship of a young, rather inexperienced politician. So I took a deeper look at both Barack and Hillary, and began to feel very strongly that Hillary would be the most effective President, and the one who could weather the oncoming Republican onslaught.

    Despite both candidates' faux pas, questionable tales and claims, the fact is that running for office causes people to do things and say things that have little to do with how effective they will be as President. It all comes back to that gut feeling each of us eventually comes to. Mine said "Go Hillary," as has about half of all Democrats.

    So, GO HILLARY 2008!!

  • Gil Johnson (unverified)
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    Edwards was my first choice, though I could have been happy with a few of the other candidates who dropped out. I haven't sent any presidential candidate any money because I feel the meager amounts I can spare are best spent at the local level. In addition, an unexpected hospitalization a couple of months ago has left me with several thousand dollars in medical bills (and yikes, I'm insured).

    I tried to keep an open mind, but found Obama more appealing. Clinton finally lost me for good when she essentially endorsed John McCain a few weeks ago (the "commander-in-chief threshhold" statement).

    You'd think I'd like Hillary because her health care plan is better than Obama's. I'm thinking, though, that Obama will be committed to the goal of universal coverage, but be more flexible on how it is accomplished. Clinton, on the other hand, may be too stubborn or egoistical to amend her plan to get it through Congress.

  • (Show?)

    I supported John Edwards and gave him a fair amount of money.

    I haven't been able to embrace either of the surviving Democrats yet.

    I feel a vaguely tribal attachment to Hillary Clinton (women lawyers in their 50s with degrees from Yale, although I guess she is 60+ now) dating back to the 1992 campaign. I have a real soft spot for her. But these days every time she opens her mouth she pushes me away from her.

    Although I fret about Hillary's electability, I fret about Obama's electability too.

    I would characterize myself as leaning Obama at this point.

  • Ron (unverified)
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    Well I'm still an Edwards supporter and hope he ends up with AG or VP or something... I've now switched my support to Obama. However, I do like Hillary and think both candidates are far superior candidates to McSame.

  • Fuchsia (unverified)
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    Kucinich was the candidate I supported. I would have registered as a democrat and voted for Edwards if he had not dropped out. I can't vote for Hillary: pro-war from the beginning, major corporatist. Obama talks the talk but does not walk which makes me really uneasy. Reminds me too much of Blumenauer: both talk against the occupation but vote for war-funding, and are against impeachment of bush/dick. Obama also voted for extending the patriot act, and went out of his way to support pro-war Lieberman against the anti-war Lamont, etc.. etc.. So Ralph Nader it will have to be again. I wholeheartedly support his stance on the issues that are important to me, such as accountability, war-defunding, single payer health insurance. Just to name a few.

  • (Show?)

    Former Edwards guy here too. Then was simply leaning Obama without a strong preference. Hillary's shenanigans over the last month have pushed me firmly into the Obama camp. Furthermore they've assured that should she somehow manage to hijack the nomination, I will do nothing more than check the box for her (any Democrat who refuses to vote for either candidate over McBush, well I don't know what the hell they're thinking).

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    I was an Edwards supporter until the Iowa caucus results. Now I'm firmly Obama. The Obama victory speech won me over.

  • (Show?)

    I had been supporting Edwards since 2003. So, this primary season kind of sucked for me. I thought Edwards was electable and had the best policy proposals on the table regarding energy and poverty issues. Plus, he was really the only candidate that wanted to get rid of the lobbyists influence in DC. I still haven't figured out who I'm going to vote for in the upcoming primary.

    Part of me thinks I should vote for Obama because he'll get out the vote. Although, I really don't know what to expect with an Obama presidency. Will he push coal to liquid over solar and wind? Will he be a half measure politician like he has been since he's been in the U.S. Senate?

    Part of me believes that Hillary will legislate to the left of Obama if she's elected. I also think she is incredibly smart and would be a good POTUS. However, can she beat McCain? Not sure.

    Another voice in my head wants to vote for Edwards anyways. He wanted to push solar/wind and not go nuclear/coal to liquid. He wanted to ban DRE voting machines. He took public financing which would have given him a leg up on the other candidates if it came to the floor for a vote. Edwards was the only candidate with a FDR/Hopkinsesque jobs proposal for the unemployed.

    So, all in all...I'm still undecided. I was leaning Obama until recently, now I'm back to being unsure about how I'll be voting on May 20th.

  • Harry Kershner (unverified)
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    re: "...any Democrat who refuses to vote for either candidate over McBush, well I don't know what the hell they're thinking"

    If McCain really were perceived by Democrats as significantly worse than Clinton, then why would 20-40% of Clinton-supporters be threatening to vote for McCain? And why would Kerry supporters have been so thrilled by a McCain vice-presidency four years ago?

    Clinton and McCain are ideologically similar enough to warrant their formation of a new party that could embrace their differences.

    Those who support Kucinich or Edwards could form a principled progressive alternative that would overlap Nader, the Greens, and other progressive choices.

    Obama could make up his mind which way he wants to go.

    Then we could have an election based on principles and issues rather than on whose pastor hates America or whose war-funding is less evil.

  • CJ (unverified)
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    I was an Edwards supporter, in fact I always thought he should have been at the top of the ticket in '04 instead of Kerry.

    Once Edwards dropped out, I was still on the fence about Obama and Clinton, but leaning towards Obama because I feel that this country desperately needs a huge kick in the pants in the form of a transformational candidate. Edwards was definitely that.

    I was momentarily sucked in by people chattering about Barack's so-called lack of experience, but then realized that length of experience in national politics does not necessarily translate to an effective presidency. Then I learned about how Barack spent some of his formative years overseas, which I think has a huge benefit in that he intuitively seems to be able to see us as others do, and is sensitive to that.

    Of course Obama's record isn't perfect, but I think for where we're at in history, he is the only candidate who can lead us out of this abyss.

    And yeah, my husband and I have contributed more money to Obama's campaign than any other candidate, and have volunteered for him too, which is something neither of us have ever done before. I would have some the same for Edwards, were he still in the race.

  • (Show?)

    Sarah Lane, I think you and I are in roughly the same place re: Presidential.

  • timbo (unverified)
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    I was for Edwards last time, and Edwards this time until it was clear that the anti-Clinton candidate with traction was Obama. I'm fine with him.

    I will never support Hillary Clinton or any other Liebermanite DLC slimer. Remember who Bill Clinton's policy guru was? Fox News political commentator Dick Morris! Remember his ruling by polling and triangulation -- until the end of the 2nd term, when the administration's sole raison d'etre was the maintenance of personal power? Remember who it was that lost both houses of Congress, enabling the One Party Bush Regime of war and violation of civil liberties?

    I will not choose between Republicanism (McCain) and Republicanism Lite (Clinton). I've given money to Obama, will give more money to Obama, and if the Clintons and the DNC hacks steal the nomination in Denver, I will actively work for and support whatever left wing opposition candidacy emerges. And there will be one -- bank on it.

    Tim Davenport Corvallis

  • de (unverified)
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    I've been chuckling all year hearing Edwards supporters calling Obama an unknown commodity, and suggesting that his deeds may not match his words. Why were you all so willing to follow john Edwards' message without considering his record? He was no progressive champion as a Senator. Obama's work on the ground suggests that he has a very real familiarity with the problems facing working americans and has dedicated a major part of his life to helping those people; deeds, you see. I believe he would take that committment to the presidency.

  • (Show?)

    Although Clinton's been my first choice all year, I did make a campaign contribution to Edwards and so consider myself a supporter.

    There's an interesting set of articles at TNR speculating about why Edwards didn't just come out and jump on the Obama train. My feeling is that, whatever personal interactions may have played out, Edwards accurately came to realize that Obama is actually to the right of Hillary on the issues he (and Elizabeth) care most about. I think following meetings with both of them he actually would have endorsed Hillary, but he had painted himself into a credibility corner with his treatment of her in several debates.

    Here's one of the articles: Why Obama (Might Have) Alienated Elizabeth Edwards

    (Do folks really buy the ruse that Obama is somehow less "Republican-Lite" than Hillary? She may stand near the partisan boundary for leverage; Obama promises to efface that boundary altogether, even if that means adopting Republican talking points on health care and social security. My prediction if Obama gets the nod: Obama/Bloomberg. Hardly standing with one foot in Naderville.)

  • Harry Kershner (unverified)
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    re: "Do folks really buy the ruse that Obama is somehow less "Republican-Lite" than Hillary?"

    OK, Chris, you convinced me. They're both Republican Lite.

    The liberal intelligentsia all see clearly that the Democrats will not get us out of Iraq.

    They all see clearly that the Democrats will not crack down on corporate crime.

    They all see clearly that the Democrats will not support a single payer national health insurance system.

    They all see clearly that the Democrats will not cut the bloated, wasteful military budget.

    And yet, they refuse to stand up to the Democrats and say - out!

    Get out!

    Get out now!

    We are going to start new.

    You are a corrupt party.

    And your time has passed.

    Time to build something new.

    Instead, the liberal intelligentsia continues to hope.

    Against hope.

    That Clinton.

    Or Obama.

    Will stand up to the military corporations and their bloated, wasteful military budget.

    Even though they know deep down that they will not.

    Even in the face of 4,000 Americans dead.

    And more than a million Iraqis dead.

    And tens of thousands wounded.

    They refuse to abandon hope in a corrupt party.

    The Democratic Party is gone.

    And the liberal intelligentsia is gone.

    Yet, as we have seen over the past two months.

    Tens of millions of Americans are ready for change.

    To move past the two parties.

    Toward something new.

    And that is what Nader/Gonzalez is about.

  • Harry Kershner (unverified)
    (Show?)

    re: "Do folks really buy the ruse that Obama is somehow less "Republican-Lite" than Hillary?"

    OK, Chris, you convinced me. They're both Republican Lite.

    The liberal intelligentsia all see clearly that the Democrats will not get us out of Iraq.

    They all see clearly that the Democrats will not crack down on corporate crime.

    They all see clearly that the Democrats will not support a single payer national health insurance system.

    They all see clearly that the Democrats will not cut the bloated, wasteful military budget.

    And yet, they refuse to stand up to the Democrats and say - out!

    Get out!

    Get out now!

    We are going to start new.

    You are a corrupt party.

    And your time has passed.

    Time to build something new.

    Instead, the liberal intelligentsia continues to hope.

    Against hope.

    That Clinton.

    Or Obama.

    Will stand up to the military corporations and their bloated, wasteful military budget.

    Even though they know deep down that they will not.

    Even in the face of 4,000 Americans dead.

    And more than a million Iraqis dead.

    And tens of thousands wounded.

    They refuse to abandon hope in a corrupt party.

    The Democratic Party is gone.

    And the liberal intelligentsia is gone.

    Yet, as we have seen over the past two months.

    Tens of millions of Americans are ready for change.

    To move past the two parties.

    Toward something new.

    And that is what Nader/Gonzalez is about.

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