John Edwards for Attorney General?

16 05 2008

Perhaps I am alone in thinking this, but I am not eager to see an Obama-Edwards ticket. On the paper its looks good. John Edwards speaks with the rhetoric of grand populism which may help Obama with white working class voters, he is from North Carolina, a state that may be in play this election season, and he is a white dude from the South.

But as the NY Times reported some time ago, Edwards was always uneasy taking the number two spot on the Kerry campaign in 04 and seemed unwilling to stay on message. Some of Edwards staffers reportedly wore ““Edwards for President” pins at a fund-raiser long after they were working for the Kerry-Edwards ticket.”

(I have to admit thats kinda funny, though it must have infuriated Kerry supporters, and understandably so.)

Plus, I happen to think it would be smarter to pick a governor from a state he might have trouble with, like Ted Strickland of Ohio, or a white guy from the South who can help conceal a perceived weakness like former U.S. Senator Sam Nunn from Georgia, a real wonk on nuclear non-proliferation issues.

To be sure, Edwards probably was right about a lot of his own criticisms of the Kerry campaign since it was oftentimes disorganized. According to the Edwards folks, they were frustrated with Kerry’s meager response to the Swift boat ads and lack of a clear stance on the Iraq war.

Two crucial areas that proved decisive in the end.

Those issues not withstanding, one could see that the former North Carolina Senator simply wanted to be his own man. He is after all very much a serial campaigner.

That’s why I’d rather Edwards as a surrogate who, if he campaigns hard enough, then you could reward him with an attorney general appointment where he can be something akin to Elliot Spitzer before hookergate, when he was AG for New York State.

I could see the Tar Heel Senator convicting execs for committing white collar crimes or suing after certain health care companies for misrepresenting their policies and gouging their customer base.

Ditto for certain energy, telecom, and mortgage services companies.

Perhaps, it was as condition of his endorsement. During a recent trip to New York to pick up a reward from a liberal think tank, NYT asked John Edwards about his interest in the vice presidency or an attorney general slot and I thought his response was quite telling.

Mr. Edwards, the one-time contender for the 2008 Democratic nomination and Senator John Kerry’s running mate in 2004, responded to speculation about a potential role in an Obama administration, saying, “I have no interest in running as vice president.” But asked about serving as attorney general, he responded: “Oh, I don’t have any thoughts about any of that.”

“I don’t have any thought about any of that” sounds a bit like damn that would be a sweet gig, but I can’t act like I am all that interested in it ’cause I am still politicking for it.

Oh wait maybe that was just my interpretation.




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