Sunday Times (UK) Tweaks American MSM for Remaining Mum on Edwards Scandal

The Sunday Times (UK) has just ratcheted up the pressure on the American media in their continuing effort to maintain their silence on the alleged John Edwards scandal. While becoming the largest English language newspaper so far to publish the juicy details, The Sunday Times, in tomorrow's edition, also took a bit of delight in tweaking the American newspapers for their desperate efforts to put a lid on this scandal such as the directive by the Los Angeles Times muzzling their staff from reporting on this as has been chronicled here in NewsBusters today. The Sunday Times story set the tone with this catchy headline, "Sleaze scuppers Democrat golden boy," followed by this subtitle, "Gotcha: Senator John Edwards, whose wife has cancer, has been caught in a sex scandal that ends his vice-presidential hopes." The Sunday Times story itself goes where the American MSM fears to tread (emphasis mine):

 SCRATCH John Edwards off the list of potential vice-presidential candidates. The former White House contender, who had been hoping to get the nod from Barack Obama, is in the midst of a full-blown sex scandal.

Every supermarket shopper knows that the preternaturally youthful former senator for North Carolina may have fathered a love child with a film-maker while Elizabeth, his saintly wife, is dying of cancer. There are sensational new details on the National Enquirer website, although most of the media have done their best to ignore them.

Following that dig at the American media, The Sunday Times continues exposing how the MSM here have kept mum on this story:

The story has been bubbling away for months, but so far there has been not a word about it in the mainstream newspapers, even though Edwards was John Kerry’s running mate in 2004 and has been tipped for a prominent job in an Obama administration – if not vice-president, then attorney-general or antipoverty tsar.

Edwards volunteered recently: “I’m prepared to consider seriously anything, anything [Obama] asks me to do for our country.”

He can stop waiting by the telephone. News of the “gotcha” rapidly circulated on the internet via the Drudge Report and has been buzzing on the blogs. The Enquirer’s story appears to be well sourced.

The Sunday Times also takes a direct jab at the Los Angeles Times for muzzling their own staff:

He can stop waiting by the telephone. News of the “gotcha” rapidly circulated on the internet via the Drudge Report and has been buzzing on the blogs. The Enquirer’s story appears to be well sourced.

According to the magazine, Edwards arrived at the Beverly Hilton on Monday at 9.45pm after attending a meeting on homelessness in Los Angeles and was dropped off at a side entrance. Two rooms were allegedly booked for Hunter in a friend’s name.

Edwards emerged hours later and was confronted by journalists from the Enquirer. His usual spokesmen and defenders have scurried for cover behind a wall of “no comment”, while the details of the story have gone unchallenged.

Even so, Tony Pierce, editor of the Los Angeles Times, issued an edict to the paper’s own bloggers to stay off the subject. “Because the only source has been the National Enquirer, we have decided not to cover the rumours or salacious speculations,” he wrote.

Mickey Kaus, a blogger for Slate magazine, leaked the memo. He noted: “This was a sensational scandal that the Los Angeles Times and other mainstream papers passionately did not want to uncover when Edwards was a formal candidate and now that the Enquirer seems to have done the job for them it looks like they want everyone to shut up while they fail to uncover it again.”

Ouch! And the New York Times is also a target of The Sunday Times' withering criticism in the hypocrisy department:

The New York Times has not deigned to touch the story, although it recently ran thousands of words on a relationship between McCain and a female lobbyist, which appeared to be based more on innuendo than fact.

It's going to be much tougher, and embarrassing, for the American media to remain mum on the alleged Edwards scandal now that The Sunday Times has accused them of covering it up.

P.J. Gladnick
P.J. Gladnick
P.J. Gladnick is a freelance writer and creator of the DUmmie FUnnies blog.