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John Edwards Doesn't Want Your Vote

Not since Al Gore won the 2000 election has there been a more important campaign than the one that will determine which party will largely ignore the needs of the many in favor of the needs of the few: the 2008 presidential election.

But let’s not be cynical!These are hopeful times, as evidenced by Democratic front-runners Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama – a woman and an African-American,two species of candidate previously believed to be unelectable. In enlightened times like these, about the only thing an experienced, prominent, handsome and intelligent candidate could do to virtually eliminate any chance of being elected is to choose an unpopular issue on which to build his campaign platform.Like poverty.

According to a recent Gallup Poll, the Top 5 issues most important in the upcoming presidential electionto Republicans, Democrats, and Independents alike, are:The War in Iraq,The Economy,Health Care Reform,Homeland Security,Education. Moving further down the list one will find “Environmental Issues,” “Taxes,” and “Foreign Affairs”; and hot button issues like “Abortion,” and a candidate’s “Christian values/beliefs” – even “World Peace”! – turn up in the top 20 issues.But no sign of poverty.

Yet former presidential candidate demoted-to-running mate and current Democratic nominee hopeful, John Edwards, has chosen POVERTY as the central plank in his presidential platform. Sounds like a good way to get a splinter to me.

What in the world is the former senator from North Carolina thinking?Here’s a guy from a small-town background with working class parents, a public school kid who’s the first in his family to attend college; he’s as good-looking as JFK, only without the bootlegger family money to live down. In short, a man most Americans would love to pull a handle for while hidden from public view by a curtain.

Instead he insists on talking about “Two Americas” (the surreal one we currently live in, and the other where we’re all lying in giant murky pods like “The Matrix”). He lists one of his favorite books as “The Working Poor” by David Shipler (nowhere near as popular as “My Pet Goat”).In July, Senator Edwards took his campaign tour to eight of the poorest states in the Union, visiting places like New Orleans' Katrina-soaked Ninth Ward, and Marks Mississippi, where Dr. Martin Luther King began his own Poor People’s March in 1968 (we all know how wellthat turned out).

Why, you may ask, would this man who seems to have everything a presidential candidate could want, build his campaign around something as insignificant as "poverty" and seek the support of a group as hopeless as the "poor"?There’s only one possible explanation:He doesn't want to win his party's nomination.

Why is he "throwing the race"? Maybe he's afraid of flying on Air Force One, or doesn't want to live in a big White House. Perhaps, as happened in recent sports-fixing scandals in the NBA and professional tennis, he’s the pawn in a giant gambling plot; or, like both Jake LaMotta and Richard Nixon, has been ordered to "take a dive" in order to get a crack at the big prize the next time around. Maybe, now that there's noWeekly World Newsat the checkout counter to expose it, he's the victim of a body-snatching alien double. I'm not ruling anything out.

Whatever crazy reason or poweful alien forces are at work here, don’t let this man subvert the sanctity of our electoral process (automatic voting machines notwithstanding). Let's band together to show John Edwards that he can fool some of the people some of the time but he can’t pull the wool over our eyes, because we have x-ray vision that allows us to see through his little scheme. And wool.

Throw a giant monkey wrench into the Edwards campaign by supporting his reluctant presidential gambit.Though he clearly doesn’t want you to, take him up on his website exhortations toJoin the Campaign; Make a Secure Online Contribution; Spread the Word; Volunteer.Show this "presidential hopeless" that he can’t scuttle our democratic voting system, because we won’t let him.

SupportJohn Edwards, the poverty candidate.Because he doesn’t want you to. (

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The use of the phrase "herein" herein is hereby acknowledged to be unnecessary and excessive.

A Modest Proposal for a film by Kurt Engfehr and Ken Pisani.
2006 Ken Pisani and Kurt Engfehr.  All rights reserved.
All "Blogging Poorly" posts  Ken Pisani.