Friday, March 23, 2007

The human side...

Every now and then, the human side of politics steps to the forefront. The unfortunate part is that it usually that part of the human condition that none of us would wish upon another. I'm talking about yesterday's disclosure that Elizabeth Edwards cancer has returned.

Political observers are trying to determine what this will mean on the Edwards campaign as he continues his pursuit for the Democratic nomination. Over on the CNN Political Ticker, Democratic strategist Dane Strother summed it up rather directly.

"It makes him real. It makes her real."

And that's because millions of Americans themselves have faced cancer or know someone who has, and can identify with their challenge. If Mrs. Edwards is able to campaign at his side with energy and vigor, there could well be a positive reaction to the resolute candidate and his wife, who press forward despite adversity.

But, those political calculations could quickly change should her condition worsen significantly.

I'm going to have more to say on this in my Hackett on Politics column this Sunday.

Currently Edwards is running third behind NY Sen. Hilliary Clinton and Illinois Sen. Barack Obama in most national polls, and leading in a couple of individual state polls, such as Iowa.

This what the two frontrunners had to say after hearing the news:

"Elizabeth Edwards is a wonderful and strong woman and I think all our thoughts and prayers go out to her, and to John and their children, and their entire family. I admire her optimism and I'm encouraged by her resolve that she's going to continue with her life and I look forward to seeing her on campaign trail."

“Today, Michelle and I join every American in sending our thoughts and prayers to Elizabeth and John and the entire Edwards family. We all admire Elizabeth’s strength and determination and the deep love they so obviously share.”


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