WASHINGTON (CNN) – Elizabeth Edwards has become a key player in her husband's second bid for the White House, but she insisted in a CNN interview Wednesday that she's the same person she has always been.
"I think that I've not really changed," Edwards told CNN's Kiran Chetry on "American Morning." "People who do know me from 2004 know that I haven't actually changed."
Her husband, former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards, is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination.
Elizabeth Edwards added that during her husband's first White House run four years ago - before her public battle with breast cancer - she received considerably less media attention than she does now.
"I was traveling on a news free zone before - nobody really covered me," she said. "I would be in smaller markets talking to smaller groups usually of women about women's issues - and had very little press. Now, there's more press."
In recent months, Elizabeth Edwards has made several sharp statements, including a strong critique of New York Sen. Hillary Clinton's record on women's issues, a biting characterization of Illinois Sen. Barack Obama as "holier than thou," and a confrontation with conservative commentator Ann Coulter on MSNBC.
She also came under fire last month for telling an interviewer, "we can't make John black, we can't make him a woman" and argued her husband receives less media attention because he lacks the interesting stories of his chief rivals.
Elizabeth Edwards told CNN Wednesday she could have phrased that point better, saying "I think the press is legitimately interested in what is really a fascinating story - a candidate with an African-American heritage and women candidate.
"I don't begrudge the press being interested in it but it is hard to get a candidate who doesn't have those atmospherics and just trying to talk about policy into the discussion," she added.
– CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney