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

John and Elizabeth Edwards speak out

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/05/06/art.edwardseliz.gi.jpg 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. Brian

    Sounds like John is considering all pros and cons, whereas Elizabeth is being a bit more narrow and single-issued...

    May 6, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  2. AJ, IL

    John Edwards endorsement will be totally irrelevant by the end of the day, and Elizabeth Edwards endorsement is about as meaningful as Susan Fisher. Who is Susan Fisher? If you have to ask, then you get the point of Elizabeth Edwards' relevancy.

    If Obama wins North Carolina, what is John Edwards going say? Is he going to go against the North Carolina electorate that voted for Obama to endorse Hillary?

    May 6, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  3. Martha, Washington

    John Edwards, knowing what it is being under brutally dishonest and unethical attacks from the Clintons would understand that if there is going to be any healing process and change in Washington-as-usual politics, these changes can only come from Senator Obama.

    Instead, he sits quietly on the sidelines, watching the Clinton's political pandering. That's not a friend of the country!!!

    At one time I was divided between Edwards and Obama... now I fully understand why Sen. Edwards is out of the race.

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  4. CNN

    Why can't I get my comment to go in?

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  5. Alonzo Demetrius

    Come on John and Liz! Join team Obama! Obama's stance on corporations influencing politics is in line with John's. His healthcare plan doens't differ so much from Hillary's that Liz would have any reason to not go for Obama anyway. Unless her decision is gender influenced, not that that's happening at all....

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  6. Mike

    Obama does not take money from Lobbies?

    Obama's New Hampshire campaign finance chair was a registered lobby for large drug companies.

    Obama's major contributors to his campaign is a large oil company CEO and drug companies.

    Even Obama's second largest contributor is an unknown "pac" which represents an 87 billion dollar pharmaceutical company.

    Obama has got lots of money from unregistered federal lobbiests so he can say he has go no lobby money but the truth is quite the opposite.

    How does Obama get 40 to 50 million a month for his campaign, from poor people?

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  7. Tejano

    Who cares who these two losers endorse. Barak and Hillary wil fight to the end. The party will split along racial lines and the winner will be John McCain. Thank you Obama for destroying my father's party.

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  8. Sheldon cole

    I think that he hasn't endorsed either because he is the leading VP for both.

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  9. linda from South Dakota

    ok,, my comment is,, what edwards wife said,, she wants a woman? well someone different than hillary please,, shes had dealings in fraud(www.peterfpaul.com) and also has her hubby,, which doesnt make well for a canidate for president,,, change is a good thing and obama can do it, grow up ,,mr and mrs, edwards and hear whats said instead of bein torn because a woman is runnin( especailly hillary). She talks big because she wants the nomination, but she cant handle what lies ahead,, trust me(unless she does more fraud things),, people check out this info on her,, very intereting you may chage your mind, its fact not fiction,,,,, clitons do anything to get what they want lieke the current president,,, the time for change is now and not with hillary,, unless you want more of the same tht we have now... GO OBAMA!!!!!!

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  10. barackobama4prez

    booooooooo!

    John, you should have endorsed. Now your endorsement won't matter and you'll be branded a wuss. So much for party elders. what a joke.

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  11. Jo, ATL GA

    Yes CNN..plug in only Obama Comments.

    DEMs will lose this election if Obama is selected. what a shame. Kerryand now Obama.

    May 6, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  12. Open your eyes

    People here continue to say Obama can unite Republicans and Dems. What exactly has be done to show that to be possible? The most liberal voting record? Explain to me how he plans to get republican support for anything so far to the left. Talk about Pandering!

    May 6, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  13. Bob

    I will vote for Senator Edwards any day. My question is, why are so many of CNN'S reporters so biased against Senator Obama. Mr. Beck(wow).

    May 6, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  14. Maggie

    To all of the Canucks who need to mind their own business........Go Flyers!!@!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Wooooo Hoooooo

    May 6, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  15. Raphael Tx

    Its great to Hear Mrs. Edwards come out and tell the truth about Obama's healthcare plan and his ads calling them "misleading."

    You can pull the wool over the misinformed only for so long and then the truth will resinate. The Obama so called "change" is just rhetoric and words with no substance to back it up. John Edwards said he wants to "see more substance under the rhetoric."

    I see some Hillary supporters here.

    Go Hillary

    May 6, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  16. COLONEL

    ME THINKS JOHN EDWARDS IS DOING THE COUNTRY A DISLOYALTY, BY NOT ENDORSING A CANDIDATE. HIS WIFE'S
    OPINIONS? WHO CARES.....HE'S THE POLITICO NOT HER..

    May 6, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  17. linda from South Dakota

    to mike hillary has facts,, lol, but what are they?? fraud and lies,, grow up and really hear whats bein said,, or isit that u are predujuce?? ummmm

    May 6, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  18. Brian from Fort Mill, S.C.

    Gerri:

    The only people that will jump out of windows if Obama is president will be the ones that can't deal with the prospect of having even a half-black president!

    Are you telling me that you couldn't even handle someone who's HALF black? I sincerely hope that none of your family marries into a black family. I'd love to be a fly on the wall, just so I can watch your head spin around. And whatever you do, DON'T EAT PEA SOUP!

    May 6, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  19. Yes we can!

    Isn't almost majorit of his staff for Obama...If he trusted them to follow him, why can't he trust them when they decided to back Obama....This has become a circus,,,,everyone wants to have "THE POWER"....these superdelegates love the publicity and media light....i'm convinced...when Obama won 11 straight contest, it was over....If it was Hillary that won 11 straight obama would have been kicked out of the race so fast....This party would have been united already and fighting John McCain like crazy...the democracts would have been up 60/40 in the polls and on our way to clean victory.....I hope NC and In both vote Obama so we can move on already....................

    May 6, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  20. mimi de la cruz fo OBAMA

    I AM STILL IN SHOCK.

    THIS MAN & HIS WIFE JUST LOST ALL RELEVANCE,

    NOT ONLY FOR THIS RACE, BUT ALL THINGS PUBLIC

    & POLITICAL. CAN'T SAY HE MISSPOKE AS HILLARY.

    EDWARDS IS A LAYER BY TRAINING. TO CALL THE

    FUTURE PRESIDENT OF OUR NATION ESSENTIALLY

    A TOKEN, BECAUSE HE IS BLACK, IS INSANE.

    May 6, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  21. Edwards

    He must be holding out for the VP spot

    May 6, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  22. CD

    John who? I live in North Carolina and don't care who John Edwards likes. He is making nice to both in hopes of a VP offer. One thing is for sure – he is for himself.

    May 6, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  23. Simply_Amazed

    I have just read a "non-scientific" poll that indicates Most people would vote democrat regardless of who the candidate is, come November. I was shocked to see that 40% would vote for McCain. WOW...Does McCain really stand for your issues. Why the hell would you do something like that...because you don't like the other..? You people haven't a clue, do you. These are the ignorant people who don't have a clue what their own candidate stands for..Or really doesn't care. Frankly, you have no business voting. I am not for either Democratic Candidate because of their stand on some issues. I will vote for the candidate that I feel shares the same views and neither Hillary nor Barack are in the running for my vote. No wonder they say the democratic party is at the bottom of the food chain...Really people?

    May 6, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  24. White Guy : Stats

    Smart move staying out Mr. Edwards, Dmocrats will need an "Honest Broker" when Obama wins in May/June.

    Electability in November:
    Democrats = 50% of US population
    Independents & soft Republicans = 15% of population
    Obama = 65% – (HRC Support of non dems of 40% X 15% = 6%)- (racist vote of 10% X 50% = 5% within Dem Party) Total Win % = 54% WIN.
    Obama Wins GE with 54% of vote!

    Clinton = 65% – (Obama support of non Dems of 60% X 15% =9%) – (African American vote of 90% X 90% (Obama Supporters) X 12.5% of US population = 10.1%) Total Loss % = 45.9% LOSS
    Clinton Loses the GE with 46% of the vote!

    Explain to me how Obama is unelectable?? This analysis doesn't even address her Negative Ratings of 62% within 50% of the Democratic Base, which would decrease her loss by an additional 9% just from within the Democrat base!!!

    Anybody who thinks that the AA community is going to "forgive and forget" by November if Obama gets railroded is dreaming in Technicolor!

    May 6, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  25. Indy for Obama

    Simple solution: Make Obama President and make Clinton Secretary of Health and Human Services.

    May 6, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
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