NY Times Does John Edwards Rehab: He's 'Hanging Out Law Shingle Again'

The New York Times went into Democratic Rehab mode on Tuesday on the front page of the Business Day section: “John Edwards Revisits His Past, Hanging Out Law Shingle Again.”

Peter Lattman and Kim Severson
waited until paragraph 27 to wonder if someone with Edwards’ talent for lying about adultery to a dying wife might impede his appeal to clients. First, we must hear of “poor Edwards” having to deal with cynics and naysayers:

Over the last year, Mr. Edwards has continued his work fighting poverty. He traveled to El Salvador and Haiti to work with Michael Bonderer, who runs Homes from the Heart, an organization that builds houses for the poor in impoverished countries.

In a telephone interview from El Salvador Monday, Mr. Bonderer said that Mr. Edwards had always talked about a plan that centered on a law practice, his children and his efforts to close the gap between what he called in his campaigns the “two Americas.”

He said that Mr. Edwards always knew the road back would not be easy. “Poor Edwards has to deal with a cynicism no matter what,” he said. “He’s got to walk the gantlet no matter what. He’s just going to have to invest the time to go through all that.”

Again, Edwards has acted like America’s Greatest Cynic (or Cynicism-Builder) for cheating on his dying wife while he was in the middle of a presidential campaign. The New York Times wasn't exactly active on the Edwards Trail of Lies. It first mentioned mistress Rielle Hunter on August 9, 2008, the same day it reported that Edwards admitted the affair.

The piece wasn’t all puffery. The reporters noted that  after a trial on his misuse of campaign funds to pay off his mistress,  "Mr. Edwards walked out of court with his law license intact and vindicated legally, but the blow to his family, reputation and ego was devastating.”

Then, very late in the piece, came this:

He dismissed concerns that his humiliating downfall and public lies about his affair while his wife was battling cancer would impede his ability to attract clients.

“You build trust and earn respect the same way today as the first day I started practicing law,” he said. “By hard work, by caring about the people you represent, by presenting your case in the most thorough and professional manner possible and by arguing your heart out.”

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis