May 6th, 2008
12:40 PM ET
15 years ago

John and Elizabeth Edwards speak out

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="John and Elizabeth Edwards appear torn on the Democratic candidates."]
(CNN) - Need more evidence John and Elizabeth Edwards are torn on who to endorse in the Democratic presidential election?

In an interview with People Magazine, their first joint interview since John Edwards bowed out of the presidential race in January, the Democratic power couple sound off on what they like - and dislike - about both remaining Democratic hopefuls.

When it comes to Hillary Clinton, John Edwards praised the New York Democrat for her tenacity, saying she "shows a real strength that's inside of her." But the former North Carolina senator also said Clinton represents a "lot of the old politics."

Meanwhile, Elizabeth Edwards said she is a strong proponent of Clinton's healthcare plan, though is disappointed the New York senator accepts donations from lobbyists.

As for Barack Obama, John Edwards said he wants to "see more substance under the rhetoric." But he gave Obama praise for wanting to "bring about serious change and a different way of doing things."

Elizabeth Edwards said she is impressed by the fact Obama has "motivated so many young people to be involved," though she does not like his healthcare plan and said his advertisements on the plan have been "misleading."

John Edwards later added he thinks it’s a "great symbolic thing to have an African-American who could be president."

That sentiment, People reports, caused Elizabeth Edwards to roll her eyes:

"What about the great symbolic thing about a woman?" she asked.

"It's important. It's important. I know it," Edwards said.

Their endorsement could have proven pivotal ahead of today's contests in Indiana and North Carolina, though by the looks of things, the two need a little more time to decide.

soundoff (366 Responses)
  1. lou

    OK...Edwards touched on something I've been thinking about too...If Obama is elected, think what it will do for black folks in America. There would be no more excuses about how they can't achieve their dreams here. Though I know it won't wipe away racism...I think it will shut down a lot of old arguments and force some people to belly up to the bar for their own advancement.

    May 6, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  2. C. Vandenburg, Martha's Vineyard

    Elizabeth Edwards is battling cancer and I am not going to say anything
    negative about her and I wish her well. However, I do believe that John
    is behind Senator Obama. During the debates, he kept saying how he
    and Obama thought along the same lines. John may not want to upset
    his wife at this stage and may be the reason why he is staying neutral.
    However, if he is looking forward to a job in Washington, I do believe that
    he will endorse Obama after today. After all , I believe that John Edwards
    is one of the honest politicians that Senator Obama seeks.

    May 6, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  3. kelly WI

    so, you are for a guy who wants to raise taxes on the rich. Well, fine, the rich will still be rich and they will lay off more of the workers and then you will be poorer. It's the rich that provide the jobs.
    All these social programs have been bad for the people. The welfare has replaced fathers in the home. And created a host of other problems.
    We could have oil dependcy with nuclear...but no because of a movie.We could drill more of our own but no, because enviromental whackos. Which is not helping the "people".
    We are forbiden to build roads and buildings because of a frog or bird. That is not helping the people.
    These last 45 years doing things on principles has hurt the people more than helped.
    John Edw. just another loser. Who cares. They got theirs and I don't think they give a whit either. Probably a hobby to them.

    May 6, 2008 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  4. Phil-Little Rock

    The candidates are right in these fools' back yard, and they haven't spoken up until today, and even then in a print interview. Face it: working people have seen enough of both candidates to make up their minds one way or the other, on their own. Beyond today, John Edwards' opinion isn't going to matter much anyway and neither will his wife's. He had a chance to step forward and make his voice known, but silence is golden.

    Fade away, Edwards, fade away............

    May 6, 2008 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  5. jimmy vekmen

    well, this election certainly has three Presidential candidates with
    different political ideologies;
    Mccain is the Conservative Republican
    Hillary Clinton is the moderate Democrat.
    Obama is the left wing Liberal.

    This Election will go down in history as the most historic and most expensive presidential election.

    May 6, 2008 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  6. simon

    Obama does not represent the "old style" politics? B.S.!!! Most of his recent ads have gone negative attacking Hillary. Not to mention the McCarthyism comment the Obama campaign had used to attack the Clintons.

    May 6, 2008 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  7. jc

    enough catering to these two whimps!! Who cares who Edwards endorses – he lost!! he lost early and he lost big.

    May 6, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  8. Wny so late Edwards?

    I don't understand why they decided to speak out today, they already have their candidate picked. She likes Hillary health care, John said Obama can bring the country together and Hillary is old politics.

    People want change, John be the man and endorse Obama. Each candidate has his or her flaws just choose the best.

    I believe John is afraid to choose Obama because of what the wife would think and we already know she wants Hillary because of the woman thing, typical.

    PS. If Hillary was the best candidate I would vote for her.

    May 6, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  9. jr

    Come on John, stand up and be counted. All of this fence sitting isn't who you told us you were when you were in the race. Be that man again. You know who you want to support. Just say it.

    May 6, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  10. Phil-Little Rock

    Besides, how can you be for the working man when you have a 28,000 square foot secluded house?

    May 6, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  11. Kimberly in Texas

    With the history of the US, a black or native American President would be much more symbolic...regardless of gender.

    When we are honest about our history, white men and women haven't been disadvantaged to the same extent...historically speaking.

    May 6, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  12. independant

    He stood his ground and didn`t accept money from lobbiests--– that`s why he`s not in the race now. -- John Edwards is still the best alternative to McBush.

    May 6, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  13. Swannie From Maryland

    Edwards will never be vp for Hillary ... Harold Ford Jr should be Hillary's VP now that would be the best choice !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 6, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  14. vjh

    Never liked the man, no backbone !

    May 6, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  15. Scott Metz

    I supported John and Elizabeth Edwards, but I think they both have shown an incredible lack of leadership, honesty and love of country by staying on the sidelines. I would like them to endorse Obama, because he represents the policies Edwards claimed to espouse. Clinton is and always has been completely controlled by lobbyists, has no history of standing up for American workers, and her health plan is about forcing Americans to buy insurance form the most corrupt business in America – Health Insurance companies. We do not need HEALTH INSURANCE – WE NEED HEALTH CARE. Get rid of the middle men, and just have a direct delivery government health care program!.

    That said, if Edwards cannot choose between Clinton and Obama, he never had any business being President. This is a fairly clear choice, and whatever he decided, no one would die. If this simple choice overwhelms him, his is a panty waste.

    May 6, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  16. Brian in Windsor Ontario

    PS. Rolling her eyes does not mean Mrs. Edward is racist (and it does not mean she is not a racist). It simply means she has heard this comment too many times before, whereas thinks women are not being given their due... (hence she likely leans toward Sen. Clinton, whereas John leans toward Obama).

    May 6, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
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