The anger, disgust and disappointment of fellow Democrats will be felt by John Edwards as he goes on trial tomorrow for allegedly misusing campaign finance money to help keep secret his affair with another woman.
Reuters reports: "Edwards is accused of accepting more than $900,000 in campaign funds from two wealthy donors, knowing the exposure of his extramarital affair "would destroy his presidential campaign," prosecutors said in a trial brief.
The candidate at the time was a married father of three, whose late wife, Elizabeth, had breast cancer.
Jurors will hear opening statements the federal courthouse in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Edwards, 58, is accused of conspiring to solicit the money, receiving more than the $2,300 allowed from any one donor, and failing to report the payments as contributions.m He faces six felony counts, each carrying a sentence of up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Edwards admits personal failings but insists he broke no laws.
Edwards' defenders say the government is overreaching with its prosecution of Edwards, the son of mill workers who earned his fortune as a trial lawyer in North Carolina before being elected as a U.S. senator from the state in 1998.
His defense lawyers dispute the Justice Department's interpretation of federal election laws, arguing the donors would have given the money regardless of the campaign and did so knowing it wouldn't be used for campaign purposes.
The money was not spent to influence the election but rather to conceal the affair and resulting pregnancy from Edwards' wife and children, they said.
Edwards never personally received any of the payments, nor did his campaign. The money was used to cover living expenses and medical care for his mistress, campaign videographer Rielle Hunter, rather than traditional campaign activities.
"This is expanding the scope of the definition of campaign contribution," said Ron Wright, a law professor at Wake Forest University who is not involved in the case. "It is an unprecedented definition."
And now you know what will be on Talk Radio in the coming weeks, obliterating all other news.