February 10th, 2010
05:15 PM ET
12 years ago

Kerry calls John Edwards' situation 'a tragedy'

Washington (CNN) – Sen. John Kerry, who tapped former Sen. John Edwards for the No. 2 spot on the 2004 Democratic presidential ticket, said Wednesday that he was "disappointed" by Edwards' political and personal downfall in the wake of revelations about an extra-marital affair and Edwards' recent admission that he fathered a child out of wedlock with his former mistress.

"Honestly, it's a tragedy," the Massachusetts Democrat said in an interview that will air on CNN's Larry King Live.

Kerry said he was shocked "and obviously disappointed."

"I think everybody just feels awful about it," Kerry continued, "in terms of their family, their relationship that everybody saw publicly, the promise, the hope, you know, obviously a capable career."

In the interview, Kerry also said that he has spoken to John Edwards' wife, Elizabeth, a number of times including very recently.

But, Kerry said he has not spoken to his former running mate.

"I have not. I have called their home, but I didn't know who would answer. I certainly was ready and willing and hoping to say a word [to John Edwards]," he said.

Kerry sat down with his wife, Teresa Heinz-Kerry, and CNN's Larry King in the couple's first joint interview since Mrs. Kerry announced she has breast cancer, a diagnosis she shares with Elizabeth Edwards.

The senior senator from Massachusetts also disussed the Republican victory in last month's special election to replace the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, who represented
Massachusetts in the Senate for more than four decades.

Bucking the political conventional wisdom, Kerry called Scott Brown's win "very understandable."

"If you were up in Massachusetts as I was, you can feel the anger and the frustration that people have with Washington, with what's not happening here," the longtime senator said.

"Scott brown tapped into that," Kerry also said. "He presented a refreshing alternative in that regard and I think all of us need to respect that part of it. Now I wouldn't over-interpret what happened. It was still a close race. And if certain things had happened campaign-wise, maybe it would have been a different outcome."

Programming note: Watch the Kerrys interview on Larry King Live Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET.

Filed under: John Edwards • John Kerry • Larry King Live • Massachusetts • Scott Brown
soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. They call me "tater salad"

    This isn't a tragedy!..........9/11 was a tragedy.........This is just another case of a typical crooked politician getting caught doing something he wasn't supposed to be doing!!!!!! END OF STORY!......Now lets move on!!!!!!

    February 10, 2010 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  2. Shirley In California

    As much as I like Sen. Kerry, I think he should not make personal comments on their marriage. Marriage is between two people. They are both adults and I'm sure they will work it out.

    February 10, 2010 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  3. Just Me

    I certainly was ready and willing and hoping to say a word [to John Edwards]," he said.

    And I hope he would have just reemed him big time.

    February 10, 2010 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  4. A.B.

    Senator Kerry should just avoid John Edwards. The Senator made the grave mistake of selecting Edwards to be his running mate. This may have been a factor in his failure to win the 2004 Presidential Election. Edwards was a serious liability and a drag on Kerry's candidacy for the 2004 Presidency and could have cost the Democrats their opportunity to win back the White House had he (Edwards) won the 2008 Presidential nomination. Fortunately, Obama won and is now President of the United States. I think that had Kerry chosen Barack Obama to be his running mate, He might have won the 2004 Presidential Election. Obama was far more talented, smarter and more trustworthy than John Edwards.

    February 10, 2010 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  5. Tom in IL

    This is a tragedy for his wife and family and for his little daughter and they deserve our empathy. Not for John Edwards. A psychopath feels no remorse and therefore deserves no sympathy.

    February 10, 2010 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  6. Joyce

    What worries me is that somebody (John Edwards) with such low personal and moral standards came so close to becoming the president of the U.S. I would hope somebody would be checking the personal background of potential leaders more closely.

    February 10, 2010 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
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