Table Scraps #2 – Mr. Edwards, Stop Blaming the Media

by Chris Justice

29 January 2008


Leftovers and scraps from the media’s round-tables.

I’m so tired of John Edwards.

Apparently, in another act of campaign desperation, with interest in his presidential bid fading faster than a setting sun, the Edwards campaign is now blaming the media for his failures to earn primary votes. During a recent interview with MSNBC’s Contessa Brewer, Edwards campaign manager David Bonior, a former Democratic whip in the House of Representatives, turned testy when asked why Edwards wasn’t gaining more traction. His answer? It’s the 5% less media coverage Edwards has been receiving compared to Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

Such a claim insults the intelligence of American voters. How can anyone believe John Edwards, a former U.S. Senator and Vice-Presidential nominee, has not received ample media coverage? Bonior’s own numbers reveal the absurdity of this claim: Does any rational human believe 5% less media coverage will result is such overwhelming differences between Clinton, Obama, and Edwards in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina?

Haven’t we seen this playbook before? The Bush administration has masterfully manipulated public opinion by pointing fingers at the media instead of themselves and their policies whenever criticism has grown too harsh. Edwards, another candidate trumpeting change, seems immune from it with this new twist. Here is just one anecdote revealing Edwards’s failed strategies: Recently, while driving home from work, I listened to a NPR interview that featured three leading Hispanic thinkers commenting on the presidential primaries and the influence Hispanics would have on the elections. One commentator said the Edwards campaign was “invisible” when trying to reach out to national Hispanic organizations. 

The reasons Edwards isn’t gaining traction are simple: his campaign is poorly organized, and his messages don’t resonate with the American people. He is a millionaire lawyer with minimal experience as a legislator, no experience as an executive, and a former Vice-Presidential nominee that LOST an important presidential election. Sure, he’s attractive, smart, and energetic; however, his ideas are unattractive, and he should bow out of the race sooner than later.

Chris Justice is the Director of Expository Writing at The University of Baltimore.

We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong on the Internet. Please consider a donation to support our work. We are a wholly independent, women-owned, small company. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing, challenging times where costs have risen and advertising has dropped precipitously. PopMatters needs your help to keep publishing. Thank you.

//Mixed media

NYFF 2017: 'Mudbound'

// Notes from the Road

"Dee Rees’ churning and melodramatic epic follows two families in 1940s Mississippi, one black and one white, and the wars they fight abroad and at home.

READ the article