Law Religion Culture Review

Exploring the intersections of law, religion and culture. Copyright by Richard J. Radcliffe. All rights reserved.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Book Review: The Politician: An Insider's Account of John Edwards's Pursuit of the Presidency and the Scandal That Brought Him Down by Andrew Young.

As the old saying goes, politics is a dirty business.

Evidently, so is writing about it.

I felt like I needed to take a shower after reading 2010's The Politician, and that was not because I read parts of it while on a stair climber.

Andrew Young was a close aide to John Edwards for many years and had intimate access to the one-time Senator and erstwhile Presidential candidate.

Due to this unusually close proximity, Young was privy to many unseemly and personal things. Young apparently does not feel the need to edit himself as he reveals private conversations between Edwards and himself including how Edwards dealt with his son Wade's tragic death. Even with politicians, there should be a limit to a "tell-all" book. Moreover, Young participated in unseemly things, including acquiescing to a false press release that claimed paternity for John Edward's child with Rielle Hunter. (239.)

Revealingly, Young sets the tone at the very outset in the acknowledgments. He writes: "To the Edwards and Anania families, with the exception of John and Elizabeth, thank you for many years of friendship." (p. xiii; emphasis added.)

Accordingly, Young seems bent on vengeance, but as is usually the case with revenge, it works like a boomerang. Neither comes across well.

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