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. oliver

    Body language says a lot. Nice roll of the eyes Elizabeth!

    You have issues!

    May 6, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  2. Zoinks

    Sounds like Elizabeth is preventing John from endorsing Obama. Hint to Elizabeth: ITS MATHEMATICALLY ALREADY OVER!

    John should secure the Attorney General spot from Obama and endorse and end this nonsense.

    May 6, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  3. tom

    They are insiders – if the voting public has enough information to make a good decision at this point, they should have much more than enough.

    It may be a good move to have prominent people like Edwards stay neutral now, so they can fully back the nominee once it is finally decided. The more important election is still to come.

    May 6, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  4. kathleen retired Professional w/woman for obama

    Edwards thinks the American people are stupid and can't figure
    this "no endorsement yet" out. No, Mr. Edwards you are a phony.

    May 6, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  5. atypical white person

    No fear
    Audacity to Hope

    Obama 08

    May 6, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  6. Norm

    To little too late.... He'll be know as the loser that can't decide, no wonder he fell from grace

    May 6, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  7. Churchill

    How come no one recalls that the Clintons took away artifacts from the White house on their way out, which they later returned. That was petty theft you know. This is even more revealing about these folks.
    Couple that with the string of lies and deception and you have a clear pattern that runs deep.

    May 6, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  8. RYAN

    Now, we know why Edward has not endorse Obama because of his control personality wife.

    May 6, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  9. voter in AR

    Sounds like they are waiting for the convention.

    And please! White women have always gotten treated better and have gained rights before non-whites. The status quo or the "old ways" dictate that a white woman be next in line.

    Obama for change.

    May 6, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  10. Annette Johnson

    Hilliary said, “Rich people, god bless us. Now who's the elities, it sounds like she is the one.

    May 6, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  11. Daniel, Newport

    People don't understand politics if they don't realize that the superdelegates are professional politicians who are going to shift
    towards the winner for their own careers. As we have seen, Hillary's
    supers have switched to Senator Obama because he has won the
    most states, popular votes, and delegate count. They won't swing
    toward Hillary because she is not the winning horse, therefore is not
    in a position to offer them anything politically. To them, this is business,
    not personal.

    May 6, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  12. fran

    My goodness some of you people are so negative and mean. They have a right to not endorse anybody and whomever they endorse is their choice. I do not see a need to attack anybody who does not agree with you, or who does not do what you want them to do. The Edwards are good people and John can hold his head high for running a very good campaign. It just wasn't his time. I sure hope some of don't treat your spouses or children they way you treat your fellow party members.

    May 6, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  13. Marshall in Nebraska

    Just tell us! Please!

    May 6, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  14. Liz

    That John Edwards has not endorsed either tells much about his character: sore loser. He might have helped either one, but sat on his hands and did nothing. I used to be a supporter of his, but I am glad he is out. And besides, according to NC news, Edwards has no sway in NC politics, being a one-term wonder with no state party network to call upon. Perhaps then it is just as well he did nothing. VOTE OBAMA! VOTE HOPE!

    May 6, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  15. Ivar

    who is wearing the pants... is he trying to say that he was going to run the white house with his wife if he had won the primaries

    May 6, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  16. Sharon

    OMG!!! This is more silly season reporting. The bottom line is neither one of them declaring who they support will affect this race in anyway. All this coverage makes him feel important so that is why he not announcing his decision. When he does he will be known as Edwards Who?

    May 6, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  17. norb

    John Edwards likes John Edwards and his 28 thousand square foot house and his 400 dollar haircuts. He's a one time Senator and President wanna be. Which he'll never be. Anybody watch his debates with Dick Chenney the last election? I doubt Edwards would even win North Carolina if he ran again for the Senate seat. Look, there goes an ambulance.

    May 6, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  18. Roselle

    John Edwards has wasted the enormous amount of political capital he had at his finger tips when he withdrew from the race. He could have negotiated with either team and applied a great deal of influence for his positions/policies to be included. Now it is too late.

    It is very devoted of John Edwards to hold off his endorsement in light of his wifes preference for the opposing candidate but the basic fact is that John Edwards is the politician who his supporters voted for and Elizabeth Edwards was not a contestant. He should have made his decision and used his position to get the most policy agreement as possible from the candidate he chose to support. He could also have pressured the Obama camp to agree that Elizabeth Edwards should be included as a major voice in the working process or committee which will be tasked with Health Care policy.

    All of that political capital is now blown. Their last major chance to get the most from their endorsment was in the weeks leading up to Pennsylvania. But it's too late now. Their policies and positions will fall to the floor instead of at least having some measure of influence on a candidate.

    May 6, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  19. Gerri


    I am 1/2 Native American, 1/4 African American, and1/4 European American. 100% American and proud of it

    May 6, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  20. Sue Z

    As another NC resident, people here are not huge Edwards supporters. He has not done anything for our state. He may be the son of a mill worker, but he became a millionaire chasing ambulances. He's probably a nice guy, but I don't think he should be VP

    May 6, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  21. kathleen retired Professional w/woman for obama

    The Edwards and the Clinton's need to move to Dubai or Columbia.

    May 6, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  22. Kiah

    Typical! She seems to like Hillary because she's a WOMAN and John seems afraid to come out in support of the TRUE candidate that brings a
    lot more than rhetoric. They both are lame!

    May 6, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  23. bigben

    Seems both are saying is Obama is all mouth no action

    May 6, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  24. Mr DE

    IF Barack can not close the deal today, ( to win both states) he is in big trouble. This primary will go all the way to convention.
    And Mr Dean will cry for help of super delegates.

    The latest poll shows Hillary will beat McCain

    May 6, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  25. Bill, Covington

    "Mimi de la cruz fo OBAMA"

    Poor baby, can't stand the heat, or truth. That is exactly what obama is, "A Token"

    Only a fool would vote for fim, so I guess we know what you are.
    Have a nice day!

    May 6, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
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