Edwards Refresher

22Aug08

In case there’s an Edwards surprise, here’s my post on the Texas congressman when Nancy Pelosi first floated his name as a potential VP three weeks ago.

THE TEXAS OPTION
Reports this weekend indicate there’s an unnoticed contender to be Barack’s VP pick – Congressman Chet Edwards of Texas.

Edwards, 56, has been pushed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other congressional Democrats who cite his work on veterans’ affairs and nuclear nonproliferation, as well as his potential to attract Southern white blue-collar voters. Pelosi has called Edwards “one of the finest people I’ve ever served with.” His stock rose further, one source said, after a meeting with Obama, though his low national profile remains a hurdle.

Scary, isn’t it, to think that Pelosi might have that sort of swagger with Barack? But he does have a profile, after 18 years in Congress, that is unusual for a Democrat.

Congressman Edwards is known as a fiscal conservative who believes massive federal deficits and the $9 trillion national debt are harmful to our economy and morally wrong to pass on to our children and grand children. The non-partisan Concord Coalition has given him its “Deficit Hawk” Award.

As a lifelong person of faith, Chet has been honored by the Baptist Joint Committee and earned the Walter Cronkite Award from the Interfaith Alliance for his principled stand to keep government regulations out of our churches and houses of worship. Congressman Edwards has also been honored with the T.B. Maston Christian Ethics Award.

Newsweek reports that the campaign wanted to announce Barack’s running mate before the Olympics, but has been unable to narrow things down. They’re unhappy, apparently, with their options.

In fact, Obama aides have identified potential drawbacks to all the front runners. Biden brings foreign-policy expertise, but there are lingering concerns that his garrulous tendencies might knock the campaign off message. Bayh, who the sources say has been lobbying hard for the nod, brings solid centrist credentials. (An aide says Bayh is not “actively” pursuing the job.) But his wife serves on numerous corporate boards, and she also previously worked as a lawyer for drug giant Eli Lilly—an inconvenient link for a party committed to health-care reform. Kaine is seen as a “change” candidate, but he has no national-security experience. Clinton remains a possibility, but her chances are seen as remote, if only because of the near impossibility of vetting her husband’s business affairs.

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