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January 14, 2007

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Edwards is a wolf in sheep's clothing, plain and simple.

Stop for a minute, and consider what he's actually done, and not his talk.

While many members in congress wisely voted against the Iraq war, Edwards not only voted for it, he co-sponsored the disastrous resolution with neocon Joe Lieberman, that made it possible.

Edwards also co-sponsored and voted for the massive increase in H-1b visas, that dumped 195,000 foreign workers on the job market, destroying perhaps hundreds of thousands of American tech careers.

Edwards voted for normal trade relations with China, making American workers have to compete with Chinese labor standards, which of course they can't.

Edwards voted for the DREAM act, forcing states to give in-state tuition (a subsidy) to illegal aliens, when there are poor Americans in these states who can’t afford to send their kids to college, partially because illegal immigration drove down their wages. This act, of course only encourages more illegal immigration because it extends even further the taxpayers obligations to those who break our laws to come here.

But what about civil liberties? Here again, Edwards voted to the Patriot act, perhaps the greatest risk to civil liberties, ever.

Edwards supporters don’t want Edwards to be held accountable for these facts. Yet, Edwards made himself extremely wealthy holding others (such as doctors) accountable - while doctors malpractice premiums rose so much as to make many obstetricians leave their specialty. More illegal alien taxpayer payed births, and fewer obstetricians - could that be why health care costs are skyrocketing?

One simple question - 10 years ago, if you did your job, the way Edwards performed as Senator, do you think he would he advocate that you get a big promotion?

Or do you think he would he have sued you and taken you to the cleaners?

"Savages" may be a bit strong. In the section of the TNR article immediately following what Nyhan excerpted, Zengerle goes on to describe the overwhelmingly positive reaction of the crowd to Edwards' speech, and says, "Although his words may be overly rehearsed, he's still saying things that no other candidate in this presidential race seems prepared to say--things that probably need to be said." He also offers a positive strategic spin, "That sometimes seems to be Edwards's signal gift--the ability to find the thread of emotional truth even in a line he's recited 20 times before. It's what made him a successful lawyer and makes him a formidable presidential candidate."

The article also speaks to what Nyhan characterizes as Edwards' weaknesses, describing how he has augmented his policy knowledge by familiarizing himself with academic research on poverty through his think tank at UNC and traveling the world to develop a better sense of America's role in the global community, as well as referring to the brilliance he displayed through his oratory as an attorney.

As supporter of Senator Edwards, I'll readily concede that I approached the article from something less than an unbiased perspective. That said, while it wasn't the most flattering portrait I've read, it was far from an attack piece. All things considered, being the subject of a cover story in TNR is a positive for his primary campaign, and reinforces the narrative that, as a candidate, he is positioned as well as anyone in the race, or anyone who might (very soon) enter it.

When certain segments of the media are ready to spuriousy misreport events (That a campaign worker went to Walmart on his behalf to get a Playstation 3, or his widely misunderstood performance at the 2003 Vice Presidential debate) or attack him or his family personally ("The Breck Girl", calling his wife fat), I can see the reason for a certain amount of coaching. How do you stay fresh when you have to fill the void of a 24 hour news cycle, and the media are just a bunch of tabloid hounds?

I predict Zengerle will some day defect to the same wasteland Christopher Hitches inhabits: angry at the left but nowhere to go but the bottle.

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