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    May 14, 2008

    'There is one man...'

    Posted by: Chris

    NOTE: I've updated this post because the more I thought about it, the more I think Edwards' choice of language was not a gender slight, but a subtle hint to Hillaryland and her supporters that his heart isn't in it. Trying to have it both ways, like Edwards has attempted on the Iraq War, gay rights and many other issues over the years.

    EdwardsobamaREVISED POST: Is it just me or was John Edwards' endorsement of Barack Obama either lukewarm or rather tone-deaf toward women? The punch line announcing Edwards' decision repeated four times the line, "There is one man…" and concluded, "That man is Barack Obama":

    There is one man -- there is one man who knows and understands that now is the time for bold leadership. There is one man that knows how to create the change, the lasting change, that you have to build from the ground up. There is one man that knows in his heart that it is time to create one America, not two, and that man is Barack Obama.

    Given the other candidate in the Democratic primary is most definitely not a man, is Edwards even saying he believes Obama is better than Hillary Clinton? And if he is, what kind of signal does it send to say Obama is "the man" for the job?

    The message is subtle, but I read this as Edwards chiming in only because the race is over and he's angling for a role in Obama's administration -- probably attorney general. In that sense, the former senator from North Carolina is displaying the same absence of political courage that has been his signature for years.

    Full video of the Edwards endorsement speech here:



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    1. Andrés Duque on May 14, 2008 9:39:33 PM:

      You know I support Obama but those were exactly my thoughts when I saw Edwards' speech live earlier today. I wondered why he didn't say "The right person" instead of "The right man."

      I am keenly aware, despite the many ways that I think the Clinton campaign went wrong, that many women (and men) were/are inspired by the historic nature of the Clinton campaign and the possibility of having a woman finally reach the presidential office (just as many are inspired by the fact that a black man might be the president).

      And I was shocked that Edwards chose to use the language during his speech today.

      Still, I am glad that Edwards did not wait until later and think that the endorsement is monumental.

    1. Randy on May 14, 2008 9:50:06 PM:

      Damn do we have to nitpick every single word someone says? I agree that we all should be cognizant of what we say but this is as bad as picking at HRC for her analysis of supporters and calling it racist.

      I'm so glad we can throw stones from the side and call ourselves analysts. I guess I'm more interested in knowing how the Clinton campaign is going to stop the tide of supers from following Edwards. Even more interesting is Pelosi's stance on this matter. I guess her tones seem to suggest she's an HRC super in disguise waiting for the opportunity to "reveal" her true identity (or not).

    1. Tim C on May 15, 2008 8:23:44 AM:

      File under Picking at Nits.

    1. Douglas on May 15, 2008 10:15:43 AM:

      I definitely picked up on this when I was watching his speech... I don't know how he could have missed the implications of his statements. Perhaps that part of the speech was more about Obama versus McCain?

      Either way, Edwards used the walls analogy a lot but didn't mention any walls dividing gender...

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