Local Politics

Edwards Shows No Sign of Abandoning Campaign

Posted January 28, 2008

Map Marker  Find News Near Me

— Despite poor finishes in recent primaries, former U.S. Sen. John Edwards continues to campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Edwards was scheduled to make appearances in Tennessee, Missouri, Oklahoma, Minnesota, North Dakota, Alabama and Georgia by Wednesday. The seven states are among 22 scheduled to hold primaries on "Super Tuesday" next week. The campaign has organizers in all 22 states and plans to launch television advertisements in 10.

Edwards also continues to pull in money from online donors. His campaign announced Monday that more than 44,000 contributions, totaling $3.2 million, has been raised so far in January, most of which will be matched by federal funds.

Still, the Chapel Hill resident hasn't finished better than his second-place finish in Iowa and has been a distant third behind Illinois Sen. Barack Obama and New York Sen. Hillary Clinton in every election since. In his native South Carolina on Saturday, he garnered 18 percent of the vote.

"The longer you're around, the more people say, 'Well, what are you doing here? Are you delusional?'" said Andrew J. aylor, a political science professor at North Carolina State University.

But Taylor said Edwards has little to lose and still has an outside shot if Obama or Clinton make a serious mistake.

"He genuinely likes campaigning for president. I think he genuinely thinks he'd be a very good president," Taylor said.

Longtime friend and adviser Ed Turlington said Edwards doesn't want to give up his fight for the poor and working class. The longer Edwards stays in the race, the harder it will be for Clinton or Obama to get the needed majority for the nomination, which gives Edwards leverage, he said.

"I wish he'd gotten off to a faster start, but I think he still has a lot of national support," Turlington said.

The Edwards campaign noted Monday that former President Bill Clinton didn't win a primary in 1992 until Georgia, and it's clear organizers are counting on a brokered Democratic convention, where delegates fight to get their candidate the nomination.

A brokered convention hasn't occurred in 40 years, but a release from the Edwards campaign puts his delegate count at 26 – fewer than 40 behind Obama for the lead.

"We're really in uncharted territory here. This may be a historically different election," Turlington said.

Democratic political consultant Gary Pearce, who ran Edwards' successful Senate campaign in North Carolina in1998, said he would advise his old boss to hang around. He said it might put him in the running for the vice presidential slot on the ticket again.

"Weird things have happened this year, and weirder things may still happen," Pearce said.

10 Comments

This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • GoBlue Jan 29, 2008

    ""Therefore, he can pocket all that donated money." Pretty sure he can't do that. He may have to give it back or save it for the Edwards 2012 campaign!"

    Actually, it goes into a fund for his next campaign. However, when he is all done running for elected office the money is his to do what he pleases.

  • Doctor Dataclerk Jan 29, 2008

    I hope he can broker a deal to run in the V.P. slot, that will be the kiss of death for the Democratic ticket. Keep chasing the car!

  • haggis basher Jan 29, 2008

    "Therefore, he can pocket all that donated money."
    Pretty sure he can't do that. He may have to give it back or save it for the Edwards 2012 campaign!

  • colliedave Jan 29, 2008

    If he stops running that means he would have to go back to work!

    Is chasing ambulances work?

  • jimbo56 Jan 29, 2008

    I think I'd make a pretty good President, but I've packed up my campaign already. He shows no sign of abandoning the campaign, BUT, the campaign HAS shown plenty of signs of abandoning him.

  • Karmageddon Jan 29, 2008

    If he would stop talking he could hear the fat lady singing in the background

  • nowon_yuno Jan 29, 2008

    If he stops running that means he would have to go back to work!

  • GoBlue Jan 29, 2008

    He is very clever in continuing with race. He is delusional if he thinks he has any chance of winning. Stupid people continue to donate money to him. Was it $3.2 million last month according to the article? Unless he plans on running for some sort of local office, any of his future positions will be appointments. Therefore, he can pocket all that donated money. He is just doing what he has always done swindled the poor and stupid out of there money. He is quite good at. I forsee his next venture as a televangilist.

  • thepeopleschamp Jan 28, 2008

    18% in SC, where "home" is this week. I hope he stays in long enough to see what % he gets in NC. I'm guessing even lower than 18%.

  • colliedave Jan 28, 2008

    He genuinely likes campaigning for president. I think he genuinely thinks he'd be a very good president," Taylor said.

    He may think so, but more and more people are seeing him as he really is: an empty suit. There are times my youngest dog seems to think and act is if he is human but he is just a dog. And Edwards will continue to be a waste of a carbon footprint.