Edwards is closely following the Kennedy model of responding to charges of misconduct. First, admit only as much as can be currently proved. Second, get the other party to block any further investigation. I guess he really is "Kennedy-esque"!
For example, when the cops found DNA on the murdered body of Martha Moxley in Greenwich, Conn., the Kennedy suspect, Michael Skakel, suddenly remembered he had been up in a tree that night masturbating! (Talk about a tree-hugger.) You can see how something like that could slip your mind.
After Teddy Kennedy plunged his car off the Chappaquiddick Bridge with Mary Jo Kopechne in it and then failed to report the accident for nine hours, Kennedy admitted he had driven off the bridge -- but said he was in a state of shock for the next nine hours, preventing him from reporting the submerged car with a woman trapped in it.
Indeed, Kennedy was so disoriented he was barely able to dream up a highly unlikely alibi.
The historical parallel to Edwards' pincer move with Rielle Hunter is that Kennedy ostentatiously demanded a full investigation -- while the Kopechne family stoutly objected to an autopsy of their daughter.
According to Senatorial Privilege: The Chappaquiddick Cover-up by Leo Damore, the evidence suggested that Kopechne died gasping for breath in the car while Teddy Kennedy was busy trying to convince various people to say that they were driving his car.
There were lots of houses nearby with lights on, but Kennedy avoided them after he escaped from the car, so he could sneak back to his hotel undetected and begin establishing an alibi. Evidently, Kennedy is better than Edwards at sneaking into and out of hotels.
Like Dorian Gray, John Edwards had a painting of himself in the attic, absorbing all the wrinkles from a dissolute life, freeing him to campaign for the presidency fresh, perfectly coiffed and without a trace of a care on his brow.
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