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As He Leaves Campaign John Edwards Still Right On Issues

January 30, 2008

As CNN reports John Edwards is leaving the race for the White House.

Prior to the start of the Iraq War many who were opposed to the invasion worried about the long-term effects on American foreign policy.  Given that there was international outrage over the way the war was being sold to buttress the rationale for the preemptive strike, and given the complexities of the Middle East on a good day, many of us had legitimate concerns about the lasting impact of this policy.

This theme has been a constant one on this blog, and must be addressed honestly by any true contender for the Presidency in 2008.  So I was pleased this past year to hear former Senator John Edwards make it clear that our moral leadership is a necessity if civilization itself is not to unravel.  Without hesitation, he stated that though there are many domestic issues that need the attention of the next President,  the overriding responsibility would be to restore our leadership to the world.  He is correct with this view.

Edwards understands in the way that John Kerry never could that world events like the horror in Darfur demands the leadership of America.  Kerry failed to challenge President Bush in 2004 over a more pro-active stance in Darfur to counter balance in the eyes of the world with what we were doing in Iraq.  When Kerry failed to even campaign on the idea of moral leadership around the globe, I lost the last shreds of hope for his campaign. 

In contrast, Edwards knew that we can’t stand in the eyes of the world seeking a leadership role if we allow genocide to take place in Darfur.  We can’t expect to be seen as credible when we speak to other nations seeking their involvement on various trouble spots, if we do not lead and act on the major issues confronting the world.

While there are many domestic needs in America for the next President to deal with, we must not nominate a candidate who says it is time to shy away from our role in international affairs.  Instead we must have a new President that is as determined to lead with moral leadership around the globe, as Bush was determined to lead with guile.

I am very sorry that John Edwards will no longer be a part of the race for the White House.  He had a real moral center to his campaign that was refreshing and sincere.  His willingness to confront the issues with honesty and punch made him more than a footnote in this race.

Thanks John for a well fought race on the issues that matter to America.

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