Monday, June 23, 2003

I had not given a whole lot of consideration to John Edwards lately, but maybe that is about to change. If you have not already read the text of the speech he gave at Georgetown University last Tuesday, here is the link. It is very clearly a New Democrat speech, criticizing both the right wing GOP and the liberal wing of the Democratic Party, and makes reference on several occasions to the glory days of Clinton-Gore. Edwards calls for a return to the values of fairness and hard work, in short resurrecting the American Dream.
I still think the Senator may be trying to trade up a bit too early in his career, but he does make for an interesting candidate to watch. He seems to have realized that re-hashing Gore's "people versus the powerful" is not the route to the White House, though this speech does still have populist tones. It appeals more to Americans' belief in hard work and the opportunity that America is supposed to represent. If Edwards can stay on this message, and continue to point out the pitfalls of crony capitalism (which isn't even capitalism) as practiced by the Bushies, he could soon position himself as a formidable candidate in the primary of ideas.


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