September 27th, 2007
02:45 PM ET
12 years ago

Edwards defends wife

Edwards said he embraces his "wife speaking her mind."

ONBOARD THE CNN ELECTION EXPRESS, New Hampshire (CNN) – Former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards on Thursday vigorously defended his wife, who has come under fire for her sharp criticisms of one of his chief rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton.

Edwards dismissed speculation that Elizabeth Edward’s high profile role in the campaign is hurting his candidacy, during a wide ranging interview with CNN Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley.

“First of all, I embrace my wife speaking her mind,” Edwards said. “She is a strong woman, got her own opinions. She doesn’t and should not ask me whether she can express her opinion.”

He added, “Does she say some things that are different than what I say? Yeah, of course. We are two different people. We are not the same person. There is nothing unexpected about that. I hope she’ll keep speaking her mind.”

- CNN Political Editor Mark Preston

Filed under: Elizabeth Edwards • John Edwards
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. Sarah, Kansas City, MO

    Elizabeth, You go girl! Women should speak up more and we need more of it. Look at all the damage men have done to the world. It is time for women to take charge.

    September 27, 2007 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  2. Ross, Dartmouth, MA

    Sometimes I wonder which Edwards is the one running for President.

    September 27, 2007 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  3. Debi, Philadelphia, Pa

    John, wake up and smell the coffee, she is hurting your campaign, I am so sick to death of hearing her cry foul when she isn't even in the game that I could scream. Everytime she opens her mouth I see just how weak you are. You will not be an option for me on primary day and I am not a party of one.

    September 27, 2007 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  4. Georgia Milano, Evanston, IL

    Elizabeth, I think it is wiser to be 'diplomatic' in political world than merely speaking up your mind!

    September 27, 2007 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  5. Leigh,Penna.

    I'd rather have a strong woman like Elizabeth Edwards in the White House then the foggy first lady we have now!

    September 27, 2007 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  6. Mark Raleigh NC

    Elizabeth Edwards should stop acting like Johnny's mother ( she is 5 years older than he) and John should act more like a man and stop being so VAIN about his hair. Elizabeth acts like she is running for president. I am tired of hearing from her. She should be concentrating her remaining time on her two small children.

    September 27, 2007 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  7. Michelle, Henderson, NV

    So Laura Bush, who has never said a negative word about any of these people, is on the menu since you can't directly insult her husband on this subject??? Georgia Milano has it right, I don't think anyone is telling Mrs. Edwards to shut-up, she has vocal cords and is free to use them. But she does have a responsibility as someone in a partnership with a candidate running for public office, to show some tact and diplomacy. Like or not, decency should still prevail in the people who are interested in representing our country to the rest of the world. She's there to support her husband, not speak for him. If she has her own agenda and wants to make her own platform, then she needs to add her name to a ticket somewhere. There's an old saying, I'm sure you all have heard, "if you can't say anything nice..."

    September 27, 2007 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  8. Ron, TX

    Fact: Elizabeth Edwards has never GIGGLED to avoid answering a question.

    Fact: Elizabeth Edwards has never said "I refuse to answer that question" while running for the highest office in America.

    She shoots straighter than HRC. Gotta be worth something.

    September 27, 2007 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  9. ronnie - knoxville, tn.

    what's with the prominent sharp Elizabeth front of out-of-focus simpering John ? when oh, when will these candidates start talking about their experience so we can judge them not on peripheral issues but on track records?

    September 27, 2007 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  10. Kyu Reisch, Radcliff, Kentucky

    Maria Houston, it depends on what you speak out. Hillary's husband gave us useful issues like domestic and international policies for our Country. Elizabeth is talking gossip and attacking Hillary.
    The lowest human talk about person, middle class human talk about events and the most wise people talk about IDEA. Now do you understand who is the bunch of nonsense? Please be quiet if you are not sure.

    September 28, 2007 03:15 am at 3:15 am |
  11. walters, A

    MRS EDWARD'S has the right to air her opinion as long as she could back it with facts if not it will backfire on their campaign, i strongly believes she has a share interest in her husband victory, that's what makes this democracy best. clinton supporters u don't tell someone to shut up, u simply disagree with her if u find her comments troubling.

    September 28, 2007 04:06 am at 4:06 am |
  12. Mrs. America

    What a photo. John is blurred so you can't see his wrinkles and Elizabeth looks like she's about his mother's age. I'd like to meet the person who selects the photos for the Political Ticker. They're always so appropriate for the topic (as CNN sees it, anyway). Great job, Mr./Ms. photo picker.

    September 28, 2007 04:31 am at 4:31 am |
  13. dawn -- Gaithersburg, MD.

    Maria from Houston:

    I don't think anyone is saying that political spouses, including Mrs. Edwards, are comprehensively prohibited from speaking. The people who object to her recent pronouncements appear to be doing so because they find the content of her speech (as opposed to the fact of her speaking) unhelpful, negative, and divisive. In addition, they seem to believe that the CANDIDATE should bash the other candidates rather than leaving it to his wife.

    As for President Clinton: he has already declared several times that he has nothing bad to say about any Democratic candidate, that he likes them all, and is enjoying a Democratic primary season in which he doesn't have to be against anybody (except the Republicans). Apparently, those who haven't criticized his speech find these sentiments inoffensive.

    September 28, 2007 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  14. James, Phoenix AZ

    Speaking of Photos of John and Elizabeth... TAKE NOTE... in every photo where they both are pictured (on CNN) – ELIZABETH has the microphone.

    Go back to the older articles on this blog and you will see.

    A picture is worth a 1000 words (spoken by Elizabeth – that is)

    September 28, 2007 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
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