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Friday, August 08, 2008

John Edwards Admits To Sexual Affair Reported By National Enquirer; Updated with Edwards' Statement and Reactions

[Updates below] Edwards statement added.

After consistently denying the National Enquirers claims that he had an affair with Rielle Hunter, John Edwards finally admits that he did have an affair with Hunter and continues to deny he is the father of Hunter's baby.
Edwards admits he lied about the affair while he was running his presidential campaign after the National Enquirer first exposed the affair late last year.

Back in October of 2007, Edwards made his denials publicly, saying, "The story is false, it's completely untrue, it's ridiculous."

He repeated those denials just a couple of weeks ago when the National Enquirer reported about Edwards meeting with Hunter at the Beverly Hilton hotel.

Recently, the National Enquirer cornered Edwards at the Beverly Hilton hotel and this story once again entered the news stream although many major news organizations did not cover the National Enquirer claims.

ABC News has now announced that Edwards is admitting to his extra-marital affair and that he repeatedly lied about the affair on the presidential campaign trail.

Edwards today admitted the National Enquirer was correct when it reported he had visited Hunter at the Beverly Hills Hilton last month.

John Edwards does continue to deny being the father of Rielle Hunter's baby after the National Enquirer produced photos they allege is John Edwards holding the child, and says he does not love Hunter.

According to Edwards, he claims he knows he is not the father based on timing of the baby's birth on February 27, 2008, saying he ended his affair with Hunter too soon to be the father.

Edwards said the affair began during the campaign after she was hired. Hunter traveled with Edwards around the country and to Africa.

Edwards said his wife, Elizabeth, and others in his family became aware of the affair in 2006.

Yesterday it was reported that Democratic party members were insisting that John Edwards deal with this issue before they could decide his role in the Democratic National Convention saying he could lose his speaking spot if he did not do so.

[Update] Listening to a National Enquirer employee on television saying they stand by their assertion that he is the father and challenging Edwards to take a DNA test and promising to publish the results no matter what they are.

Charlotte Observer brings up a blast from the past.. Edwards regarding Clinton in 1999:

I think this President has shown a remarkable disrespect for his office, for the moral dimensions of leadership, for his friends, for his wife, for his precious daughter. It is breathtaking to me the level to which that disrespect has risen.
[Update] Edwards' statement:

In 2006, I made a serious error in judgment and conducted myself in a way that was disloyal to my family and to my core beliefs. I recognized my mistake and I told my wife that I had a liaison with another woman, and I asked for her forgiveness. Although I was honest in every painful detail with my family, I did not tell the public. When a supermarket tabloid told a version of the story, I used the fact that the story contained many falsities to deny it. But being 99% honest is no longer enough.

I was and am ashamed of my conduct and choices, and I had hoped that it would never become public. With my family, I took responsibility for my actions in 2006 and today I take full responsibility publicly. But that misconduct took place for a short period in 2006. It ended then. I am and have been willing to take any test necessary to establish the fact that I am not the father of any baby, and I am truly hopeful that a test will be done so this fact can be definitively established. I only know that the apparent father has said publicly that he is the father of the baby. I also have not been engaged in any activity of any description that requested, agreed to or supported payments of any kind to the woman or to the apparent father of the baby.

It is inadequate to say to the people who believed in me that I am sorry, as it is inadequate to say to the people who love me that I am sorry. In the course of several campaigns, I started to believe that I was special and became increasingly egocentric and narcissistic. If you want to beat me up - feel free. You cannot beat me up more than I have already beaten up myself. I have been stripped bare and will now work with everything I have to help my family and others who need my help.

I have given a complete interview on this matter and having done so, will have nothing more to say.

It is being reported on television that Edwards and his wife Elizabeth might be making a public statement, if and when he does, I will try to provide the video.

Reactions are starting to come out.

Former campaign manager David Bonior said in an e-mail statement, "I am disappointed and angry. Thousands of friends and supporters of Senator Edwards put their faith and confidence in him, and he has let them down. Young supporters who put their time and energy into his campaign with a newfound energy and idealism for politics have been betrayed by his actions. But the issues we cared about and fought for — poverty, worker justice, clean environment and health care for all — are issues worth continuing to fight.”

It is being reported on television that Edwards and his wife Elizabeth might be making a public statement, if and when he does, I will try to provide the video.

Previous pieces:

National Enquirer Publishes Spy Photos of John Edwards and Alleged Love Child
Bloggasm, LA Times Blog Editor, National Enquirer and John Edwards
Fox Confirms Portion of National Enquirer Story About John Edwards Meeting Mistress
LA Times 'Asks' Their Bloggers To Not Report On National Enquirer's John Edwards Story: Update- Fox Interviews Hotel Security, Verifies Enquirer Story
John Edwards Caught Meeting His Lover