Associated Press attacks Elizabeth Edwards

When it finally became official that John Edwards had an affair, many felt hurt and betrayed. Still more felt a stab of pain for Elizabeth Edwards, who emerged from her husband's campaign as a powerful liberal voice.

A couple weeks later, however, the Associated Press has gone way, way out of its way to vilify her.

"Wife blasted for keeping Edwards affair secret"

RALEIGH, North Carolina (AP) -- Two weeks after a devastating revelation sent her husband into political exile, Elizabeth Edwards isn't getting the steady sympathy usually afforded to a woman scorned.

Instead, she's faced criticism from dedicated Democrats who think she was too willing to keep the affair a secret to help John Edwards' political ambitions, as well as her own.

At a time when she was expected to hold a prominent role in pushing an agenda of improved health care for Americans, she stands silent. While fellow Democrats converge in Denver, Colorado, to nominate Barack Obama for president, Edwards remains in seclusion in North Carolina.

It seems an odd way to treat a woman with incurable cancer wronged by a cheating husband, the latest in a series of deep hardships in life that includes the death of a teenage son.

But some former followers have questioned the recklessness of keeping the affair under wraps even though her husband -- a former U.S. senator, two-time presidential candidate and the 2004 vice presidential nominee -- said he confessed the affair in 2006, before the campaign began in earnest the next year.

Who are all these angry Democrats coming forward?

1. Brad Crone, an N.C. Democratic political consultant known for advising N.C. Democrats to avoid going after Elizabeth Dole's Senate seat.

2. Chris Lehane, described in the story as "Democratic consultant who helped President Clinton through his cheating scandal." And Lehane in no way "blasted" Elizabeth Edwards.

3. A commenter on Daily Kos.

4. Betsy Wells, a former Edwards delegate who didn't "blast" Elizabeth Edwards, either.

And that's it. Those are the "Critics (that) say Elizabeth Edwards lost their sympathy for keeping (the) affair secret." In fact, it wasn't even close to "critics" who said that. It was an unnamed commenter on a blog post.

Basically, the AP wanted to do this story during the Democratic National Convention, and ran with it regardless of its non-existence. The idea that Elizabeth Edwards has anything to answer for in regard to her husband's affair is beyond hurtful, it's pure misogyny. And that misogyny came purely from the AP. It was an invented story that's sole purpose was to shame, insult and disrespect Elizabeth Edwards. And CNN and any other news agency that runs the story are equally hateful.

This is what passes for political discourse to the Associated Press these days. With John McCain stooge Ron Fournier running the joint, you can expect a lot more like it in the coming weeks. But it's unlikely they'll be able to match the outright hatefulness they produced in this transparent attack on a woman that deserves nothing less than outright admiration and respect.


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