Should Edwards have stayed in?

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

Over at his blog, Jack Bogdanski gives us a fascinating what-if.

What if John Edwards had stayed in, and scooped up enough delegates to be the power broker in this campaign?

The hounds who brought down the Presidential candidacy of my favorite contender, John Edwards, often hectored his supporters about his ego. But truth be told, his ego wasn't big enough.

If Edwards had been more of a self-centered jerk, he would have stayed in the race much longer than he actually did. He would have picked up some more delegates. He might have been in a position by now to decide who the winning candidate would be, and stop the bloody scratch fight that's tearing the Democratic Party apart. He might even have had a shot at capturing the nomination himself in a brokered convention.

As a hardcore John Edwards supporter, I do wish he would have stayed in longer. It would be a different kind of campaign, though I don't share Jack's pessism:

If he were still around today, the picture for the Democrats might seem a little brighter. As it stands, however, it's not too bright at all. God help America.

We're all going to come together - hopefully sooner rather than later. And we will defeat John McCain.

But, ironically, if John Edwards had stayed in, the race might actually have been over sooner.

Comments

  • TroyB (unverified)
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    Edwards was my choice 1b to Obama's 1a. My thought was they were both good for working people, but Obama had the edge in getting new people involved. I am hopeful Edwards will be part of an Obama administration. On a side note...

    [Off-topic distraction deleted. -editor.]

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    YES!

    I have been saying for WEEKS, nay MONTHS, that I wished Edwards had stayed in longer. It would be a whole different scene if he had. And the two candidates still standing make Edwards look better and more electable every day.

    signed,

    Still Undecided In The Presidential

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    Yes. Yes. One million times, yes!

    It certainly would have made my Presidential primary pick easier, even if he couldn't get enough delegates to win. (I've still got my Edwards button up on my blog.)

    I'm half-way tempted to write him in anyway since I'm not particularly inspired by Clinton or Obama.

  • joel dan walls (unverified)
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    Edwards' wife has terminal cancer, why was he running in the first place? "Daddy, what were you doing while Mommy was dying?" "Uh, campaigning for president."

  • joel dan walls (unverified)
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    Edwards' wife has terminal cancer, why was he running in the first place? "Daddy, what were you doing while Mommy was dying?" "Uh, campaigning for president."

  • Jiang (unverified)
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    Don't look now but Hillary's bogus IQ test gas tax relief rhetoric is actually her floating Edwards as a running mate.

    In the current environment you only say "sock it to the rich" if you're about to say, "and here's the man, Johdn Edwards".

    She's demonstrated she lives in a lawyer's world and sense of reality. He's the only one she can "trust".

    This race makes me wish I had terminal cancer. Too bad we can't swap diseases like corporate amerika can disease making.

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    What if?? An exercise in futility. The point is Edwards didn't have the support, electorally or financially. I say that as one who had him as number one preference. And the negative dynamics of this primary process were destined to go this way as long as anyone got between Hillary and her entitlement, and as long as we have the toxic media that we have. If Edwards were the front runner he would have received the kitchen sink too, instead of having a black preacher to hang around his neck he would have been lynched as a corrupt trial lawyer.That's Clinton politics.

    Last night the Obama campaign reached 1.5 million donors, an historic first. 1.5 million contributors now own a piece of that campaign, a donor base of small contributors that can keep contributing. The Dem. party is in a life and death struggle about its values and identity. This was inevitable whether it was Obama or Edwards as front runner. We now are able to choose between a party that is complicit in neocon militarist disasters, a party and government owned by the multinationals, or a party and a government that has accountability to its citizens.

    Right now we are moving inexorably toward an Obama nomination that will be close to being wrapped up here in Oregon, when Obama gets the majority of pledged delegates and the movement of the decreasing number of SDs puts him over the 2024 top.

    The Clinton campaign has now decided to try to change the math with the "nuclear option" with an appeal all the way to the convention to try to change the rules. Somehow I don't think that will sell. We'll see a massive defection of her supers if she tries to pull that.

  • Garrett (unverified)
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    I personally have a guy feeling that Edwards people are more Obama people than Clinton people. I am sure the primary would have been over a long time ago if Edwards had stayed in but I have a feeling he would have just split the vote with people voting for Obama now. I think Hillary has always had Hillary people and she doesn't gain many by a candidate dropping out nor does she lose any to another candidate. It's just a gut feeling but I doubt we would be coming up on Edwards being a power broker. I think this thing would have been over on Super Tuesday had Edwards still been in the race.

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    Garrett: "I personally have a guy feeling that Edwards people are more Obama people than Clinton people. I am sure the primary would have been over a long time ago if Edwards had stayed in but I have a feeling he would have just split the vote with people voting for Obama now."

    I think you are right in that sense, data suggests the majority of Edwards people have gone Obama, away from the corporatist neocon line of Clinton. The other side of that is that Edwards would have taken the "bitter" vote from Clinton, especially in the "rust belt" and Appalachian region and made it easier for Obama to claim victory earlier. So it's a bit complex when we talk about "what if?" In the end, useless speculation.

  • Daaaaave (unverified)
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    Yawn, BoJack rips off Trippi's article from last week.

    If Edwards didn't drop out, people would be just as sick of him as they are of Obama and Clinton. And he still wouldn't have a real base of voters.

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    What is this "pessism" you write about and were can I get some?

    The world is filled with ifs. No one imagined this thing would last past Super Tuesday--expect Obama. If Edwards had stayed in, we probably would be done by now. He would have damaged Obama in the South on Super Tuesday, and might have scooped up a caucus win. That would have given Hillary a decisive win on that date, and she'd now be our nominee.

    I like Edwards, but there was never a path to the nomination for him. He could have played spoiler and given it to Hillary. Based on what I've seen about how Hillary has run since Super Tuesday, I'm very glad Obama is the likely nominee. She would do no favors for the party, she wouldn't have goosed registration, and she wouldn't be inspiring a brand new generation of Democrats.

  • Randy (unverified)
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    Edwards is even more of an elitist twit than Obama. He was toast and he knew it so he dropped out early. Middle America isn't going to elect some prig with $400 haircuts who lives in a mansion and talks about being a populist. He was just an arrogant, popous ass who extorted money from companies for a living and thought he was something special.

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    Actually, I think Edwards would have hurt Clinton in the South. There are a number of people down there who don't like the Clintons, but also weren't comfortable voting for someone who wasn't white. Edwards would have picked up those votes, but instead they were reluctant Clinton supporters.

    I know this to be the case in my hometown area, and it's pretty representative of a lot of places in the south.

  • Eric Parker (unverified)
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    Edwards may have done the correct thing by dropping out when he because now he could be in an excellent position to be the VP to either Clinton or Obama. In fact, I wouldn't be suprised if Edwards was offered to be the running mate of the victor of this high-strung knock-down drag-out nomination the D's are putting forward. I do not think either Billary or Obama could stand or tolerate being the VP for the other knowing that the VP position was, technically, a 'runner up' prize for finishing 2nd.

  • Garrett (unverified)
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    I know this to be the case in my hometown area, and it's pretty representative of a lot of places in the south.

    I think all of you Northerners have a little bit skewed version of how the South is. Sure there are racists...the same way there are racists here in the whitest city in the US. The white racist Democrats left the party a long time ago and are Republicans now...they wouldn't be voting for Obama or Hillary.

    Edwards may have done the correct thing by dropping out when he because now he could be in an excellent position to be the VP to either Clinton or Obama.

    I believe Edward's response when asked about this possibility was, "been there done that." I might have got that a little wrong but he said he wasn't interested. I think Attorney General might be a bit closer to what he would be offered and possibly willing to take.

  • Matt (unverified)
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    Joel Dan Walls wrote:

    Edwards' wife has terminal cancer, why was he running in the first place? "Daddy, what were you doing while Mommy was dying?" "Uh, campaigning for president."

    This is the most offensive piece of bullshit I have every read on this site. As someone who has lived through a family member being diagnosed with and eventually die from cancer I learned a few things about this unfortunate disease.

    I cannot imagine the heartache that it must have caused within the Edwards household but, I know that even with that feeling, there is inspiration in fighting against cancer. Elizabeth and John Edwards should be an example to families dealing with the disease that it is not a death sentence. Rather, it can be a challenge that gives many a new perspective.

    You Joel (fake name?), on the other hand, are an asshole. Shame on you.

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    Garrett:

    Actually, you should know that I was born and raised in the South and have only lived in the north since the summer of 2000. The hometown I was speaking of is in the South.

    I lived in an extremely racist town, and the bulk of those most racist were... Democrats. Some of the people most active in the party were some of the most racist people I've ever met.

    I speak from experience, not as a "northerner" making assumptions about the south. It comes directly from comments from people back home in regards to the presidential race.

  • BCM (unverified)
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    You all must be referring to the mysterious traveler...

    Mysterious Traveler Entrances Town With Utopian Vision Of The Future

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    Good dry stuff BCM, my favorite type of humor.......

  • Daniel Spiro (unverified)
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    Should Edwards have stayed in?

    Let's put it this way. Barack Obama has run an excellent campaign. He's now being dogged by a sensationalist media playing to the racist attitudes of large number of voters, as well as to the Republicans who want to see "chaos" in the Democratic Party.

    If this country ever hopes to elect a black person, it had to know that there would be times like this. Relax, and look forward to the Obama Administration. It will come in January. And it will have been well deserved.

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    Edwards should have stayed in with his commanding 12% of Dems and very little money? he proved he was smart enough to know this wasn't his year. had he run this campaign 4 years ago, he might be the incumbent. but he missed his window and will have to settle for being Obama's AG. that was the campaign that got it right.

  • MCT (unverified)
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    Kari...been so busy I nearly missed this post! Edwards was my guy and I was so disapponted when he withdrew. Now I support Obama; though I had not paid much attention to him prior to Edwards backing out. I like the fire in the belly I saw when Edwards spoke of corporate greed and lobbies. I hear more of that from Obama as time goes on; I hope truly he is committed to reform, and won't give up at the first opposition he faces. (And when I hear the same theme from Hillary, I simply don't believe her. From the folks who brought you NAFTA?. Not likely to get much reform from them.)

    As to the question....my gut tells me that Edwards staying in would have further divided the party. Not to mention it being a shaming waste of money. I simply shudder when I think of the millions and millions of dollars spent on campaigns...and the true good that cash could have done if donated to some charity to help Americans in trouble.

    My third eye also tells me that everything happens for a reason and that there is a place for John Edwards in the next administration, or somewhere in America's future. God I hope so. He is a Good Man.

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