Edwards, Giuliani Call it a Campaign

I’m no John Edwards fan (we’re generally ambivalent up in here) but I read a thoughtful piece yesterday by Alice Bonner on The Root, who said that being the child of a poor Southern laborer — like John Edwards, the son of a mill worker, in case you hadn’t heard —- was as much a part of what concerned her as being a woman or being black. “Certainly we must hammer away at racial and gender inequities, but we also need someone like Edwards to make sure we remember the left-behind people, someone to embarrass us for scorning people based on where they happened to be born, by place and class.” Can’t be mad at that.

After not winning or finishing second in a single Democratic primary, John Edwards is officially making the bid for the Democratic nomination a two-candidate race. What’s next for Edwards? At 54, he’s young enough to mount another bid in eight years (assuming a Democratic victory, by no means a guarantee). But would he want to? Would anyone else want him to? He ran up against two political rock stars in Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama this time, but in ’04 he couldn’t even outshine John Kerry. It’s possible that this is his political ceiling. He could hitch his wagon to the ticket of Obama or Clinton, and if they go on to be elected, he could run on the experience platform. He might even be the frontrunner (if Obama hasn’t won a nomination by then, of course).

Not too long ago, Rudolph Giuliani was the front-runner for the Republican Party nomination. As a New Yorker, that meant having to listen to annoying assertions by fellow residents that they’d “leave the country if that fascist Giuliani” were elected president. To say I deeply distrust Rudy Giuliani would be an understatement, but I just couldn’t get that worked up about his campaign; his inflated poll numbers would evaporate as the campaign wore on and Rudy acted like, well, Rudy.

Rudy didn’t disappoint. He decided on a risky strategy where he would cede the first primary states and campaign hard in Florida, hoping a big win there would slingshot him forward going into the Super Tuesday primaries. Well, it didn’t work. Can’t be mad at that, either.


Gene "G.D." Demby is the founder and editor of PostBourgie. In his day job, he blogs and reports on race and ethnicity for NPR's Code Switch team.