John Edwards invited critics to beat him up over his extramarital affair and lies about it. The invitation is hereby accepted.
The former presidential candidate and vice presidential nominee of the Democratic Party has betrayed his supporters, his fundraisers, and, most of all, his wife and family. He deserves scorn.
Edwards had portrayed himself as a loving family man who was fighting through his wife's battle with breast cancer. So much for that picture.
In fact, Edwards started his long campaign as a happy warrior, a smiling populist from the South. He spent more time in Iowa than any other presidential candidate of either party. He finished second in the Iowa caucuses, but his campaign tanked from there.
One reason for that quick collapse was his ugly turn to angry and bitter attacks. He was especially rough on Sen. Hillary Clinton in the many debates when she was the front-runner for the nomination.
Edwards then waited until Sen. Barack Obama had safely secured the nomination before endorsing him. Obama must be more than even ambivalent now about his support. Edwards has lost his chance to speak at the party convention in Denver.
Some commentators have suggested that Edwards could come back after four or eight years because time and the American people are forgiving. Forget about that scenario.
Edwards dug his own deep pit by being a holier-than-thou politician. Other officeholders in both parties have strayed from their marital vows, but Edwards was convincing regarding his own fidelity.
The National Enquirer, the grocery-store tabloid, broke the Edwards story. It prompted Sean Hannity, the right-wing Fox News (naturally) blowhard, to claim that the mainstream media would have been more persistent and vigilant if it had been a Republican. Hannity must have been on another planet when President Clinton's personal problems were detailed by the media.
It so happens that the plateau of journalistic verification is much higher for the mainstream media than for the National Enquirer or Sean Hannity.
As for Edwards, it is a fast goodbye and good riddance.