MAY 04, 2009
Federal prosecutors have finally launched a criminal investigation to determine if the North Carolina senator who cheated on his terminally ill wife illegally used political campaign funds to pay his mistress, purchase a multi million-dollar home for her and transport her on private jets.
News of the extramarital affair broke after John Edwards’ failed 2008 presidential campaign. As his ailing, cancer-stricken wife toured the nation campaigning for him, the Democratic senator had a secret affair with a younger woman he met at a bar and kept close with a bogus campaign job. They even had a child out of wedlock.
Allegations immediately surfaced that Edwards used campaign money to pay off the mistress (Rielle Hunter) and buy her lavish gifts. In fact, Edwards’ former national finance chairman, Fred Baron, paid for Hunter’s moving expenses and reportedly upwards of $15,000 a month in hush money. The cash was seemingly paid out by Edwards’ political action committee, a top contributor and his presidential campaign.
Over the weekend a newspaper in the disgraced senator’s home state reported that the U.S. Attorney’s office in Raleigh has launched an investigation into the scandal and a federal grand jury could eventually consider evidence. Records already prove that Edwards’ political action committee paid his mistress $114,000 to create a series of internet videos even though she had no filmmaking experience. Using money from a political action committee for personal use is a federal crime.
A wealthy trial attorney, Edwards became a U.S. Senator in 1988 and entered the national spotlight when he first ran for president in 2004 and was later chosen by Massachusetts Senator John Kerry has his running mate. He ran again in 2008 and a tabloid broke the extramarital affair scandal while the so-called mainstream media ignored it for months.
In her upcoming book, Elizabeth Edwards reveals how angry and hurt she felt after learning of her husband’s enormous betrayal and how it would inevitably affect their children. She writes: “I cried and screamed, I went to the bathroom and threw up.”
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