Rielle Hunter on night with Edwards: 'Intensity like a rock concert'
June 22nd, 2012
11:19 AM ET
11 years ago

Rielle Hunter on night with Edwards: 'Intensity like a rock concert'

(CNN) – The woman at the center of one of the 21st century's most salacious political sex scandals said in an interview airing Friday she has no regrets about falling in love with a married presidential candidate.

Rielle Hunter, who carried out an affair with former Democratic Sen. John Edwards while acting as a campaign videographer, made the comments in an interview with ABC News.

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"I don't regret falling in love, and I don't regret loving him, nor do I regret our daughter," Hunter said in the interview, portions of which aired on "Good Morning America" Friday.

In August 2008, Edwards admitted to an affair with Hunter, a onetime videographer for his presidential bid. At the time, the former North Carolina senator denied paternity of the daughter she had given birth to six months earlier.

The Justice Department had accused Edwards of using nearly $1 million in illegal campaign contributions to keep his pregnant mistress under wraps as he mounted a second presidential bid in 2008. But after more than 50 hours of deliberation, a North Carolina jury acquitted him in May on one of the six counts against him and deadlocked on the other five.

Edwards eventually acknowledged paternity of the daughter he fathered with Hunter, and after the May 31 mistrial, he talked about "my precious Quinn, who I love more than any of you can ever imagine."

In the interview Friday, Hunter describes the first time she encountered Edwards.

"He rounded the street corner, and it came out of my mouth: 'You're so hot,'" Hunter said.

She said she accompanied Edwards to his hotel room because she thought, "I could help him."

"What a joke, for the outside world looking in. 'Boy did you sure help him,'" she said mockingly.

The pair's first evening together, Hunter said, was unlike anything she had ever experienced.

"Something internally happened with me," she said. "I responded. I have never seen that before. I had not experienced or felt what was happening before. Intensity like a rock concert."

Edwards' marriage with wife Elizabeth, who died of cancer in 2010, was in shambles before she entered the picture, Hunter alleged in the interview.

"Their marriage was ruined years before I got there," she said, adding that before his relationship with her, he had carried out other extramarital affairs.

"I was not the first," she said.

Elizabeth was not the saintly figure the media portrayed her to be, Hunter claimed, saying the former political wife had another side that was rarely revealed. Elizabeth and John Edwards separated in 2010.

"The full truth needs to be in the public domain," Hunter said. "Their father's not a demon and their mother's not a saint, and I'm not a home-wrecker. We're real human beings, and there is a real dynamic that was going on, good and bad, and we all made mistakes."

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Filed under: John Edwards • North Carolina
soundoff (184 Responses)
  1. Olaf Big

    The responsibility is John Edwards's. Whether she is telling the truth, or embellishing their relationship after the fact, it's Edwards, who carries full weight of responsibility. If you want to be Commander in Chief, at the very least you should be in command when deciding when to drop your pants and when to keep them on. If anything, we should be grateful to her for bringing Edwards's character weakness to light and burying any hopes for a high office he might have had.

    June 22, 2012 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |

    This woman and i use that term lightly is nothing but trash that needs to be taken out and hope she doesn't recycle. Im not sure ive ever seen a person as low as she is, how dare she write about Elizabeth in such a horrible and demonic way. John Edwards deserves what he gets from here on out but his children do not. I don't think if i had been his daughter that i could have stoog by his side during his trial, i don't care how much i loved my father if he did this to my mother while she was fighting for her life, he would have had to fight his own battle alone as well. I feel really bad for Elizabeths children that they have to hear all the trash that this whore....has written about their mother and they should publicly come out and put her in her place.

    June 22, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  3. Expat American

    I struggle to find the words to describe the odor coming from this pile of trash.

    June 22, 2012 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  4. Megan

    Women who pursue married men absolutely confound me. Men who cheat on their wives and throw their entire families away make me sick. There is not enough moral outcry in this country – no stigma – we just all sit back and watch.

    There should be SOME REPERCUSSION! He violated his vows and she consciously pursued a married man (happily or not doesn't matter)...

    They both make me sick.

    June 22, 2012 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  5. Jules

    Spare us the Fifty Shades of Edwards. Don't want to see his face – don't want to see her face. Last comment I will make on the subject. Will not buy the book.

    June 22, 2012 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  6. WIMPY38

    She got "rocked" alright.

    June 22, 2012 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  7. wow

    when are we going to stop giving women like Hunter a platform that is the reason the family values are going down the tube... now the mistresses believe they have a right!!! Wow!!!

    June 22, 2012 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  8. Guest

    I promise you she will not get one penney from me.

    June 22, 2012 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  9. J. A. Nixon

    Please do not let this "woman" make any money off her book. Hasn't she done enough damage!

    June 22, 2012 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  10. Critical Thinking

    Karma baby, look out for Karma.....

    June 22, 2012 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  11. sayer

    Her 15 minutes are over. Please don't come back again.

    June 22, 2012 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  12. IVOTE

    She is disgusting.....The book is not worthy of anyone's dollar.

    June 22, 2012 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  13. joe smith

    didn't know there were so many Saints in the audience..then again, remember gary hart..wonder who dropped the dime on him..

    June 22, 2012 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  14. Ann

    Who the heck does she think she is? It's not her place to tell John Edwards' other children anything about him or about their mother. She's certainly not trying to make a good relationship with them. She's just excusing her own behavior. Disgusting. I will not read one more article about her or him. I will not buy any books or anything else by either of them.

    June 22, 2012 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  15. Oakstave

    Of course sh has no regrets! She just slept her way to Early Retirement!

    June 22, 2012 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  16. ThinkAgain

    Doesn't matter how you spin it, she had an affair with a married man. They were both cowards and liars to do this, period.

    June 22, 2012 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  17. Romney is not My Hero

    I knew that slick pony haircut of his was hiding a stallion. "Intensity like a rock concert" HAHAHA... WOW!

    June 22, 2012 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  18. Rock and Rose

    This concubine just does not know what she has unleashed on herself and her family. I say that for him to. It is so sad for her to say that she has no regrets, for right now until the rath of God is upon her. I feel bad for their kids. Then they wonder why so many things happen thru out their lives. If we just lived like it says to live in the bible we would be alright.

    June 22, 2012 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  19. lilred

    I will be the first one NOT to buy this book.

    June 22, 2012 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  20. Michael L

    Seems to me that the Edwards had a Jon and Kate Gosselin type marriage. She was so controlling to the point he felt emasculated enough to have an affair. Ladies, there's a lesson here.

    June 22, 2012 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    do not watch or read anything with her name or face on it

    June 22, 2012 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  22. contesa

    Any man or woman who makes the decision to have an "affair", when they are still married, on some level, figures they will either never get caught, or in the alternative, the spouse will "forgive them" and take them back with open arms! In my mind I can still see the "doe in the headlights" eyes of Elliot Spitzer's wife, the day he announced on cable TV he had an affair. Why did his wife even consider being in front of that cable TV camera with him?? Ms. Hunter can give any justification as to the reasons she had to proceed with her affair with John Edwards. And she had better realize, if John Edwards had other affairs before she "flipped his switch", then she very well could be "crying in her beer" too when she finds out he is with yet another woman. A person should never get married if he/she knows at some point in time he will be a "stray". And the same applies to a single person who pursues married partners. Single is Single!! Married is Married!! It's just that plain and simple.

    June 22, 2012 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  23. mack

    How is the a ticker item? Is she running for office? John Edwards will never again run for office unless he becomes a republican.

    June 22, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  24. alyarby

    This woman is nothing but trash. So is Edwards. They are both pathetic people who can't contain their own overblown egos and can't keep whatever they need to keep in their pants. They should both be outcast and not spoken about again. They deserve each other.

    June 22, 2012 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  25. Obama 2012 - BEND Forward America, take another 4 long years of FAILURE

    This woman is the living breathing embodiment of everything that is wrong with this world. She just happened to meet the same male version. I really hope the little girl turns out to be far better than either of her parents. They are both very horrendous role models.

    June 22, 2012 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
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