John Edwards hated hanging around with “fat rednecks” (UPDATE: E. EDWARDS HAS SEPARATED FROM JE)

That’s just one damaging allegation of many in the upcoming tell-all book The Politician, a book written about Edwards by his former handler Andrew Young. The exact quote:

Young says Edwards is an Atkins-dieter who hated making appearances at state fairs where “fat rednecks try to shove food down my face. I know I’m the people’s senator, but do I have to hang out with them?” Before a SEIU candidate forum in Las Vegas, Young says Edwards made him cut out a “made in the USA” label from Young’s own suit to sew in place of Edwards’s “made in Italy” label.

Another interesting tidbit from the book? Neither Hunter nor the baby they had together had health insurance. Figures.

Read much more about what’s in the book at that WSJ link, and also at Hotline on Call.

Edwards’ supporters will be quick to point out that the book is nothing more than an unverifiable he said, she said, but Young claims to have emails and voice mails – and witnesses – to back up what he’s written, in case he has to. That said, what I’ve read so far about the book fits the John Edwards that many of us have known all along: A man who has claimed to be and who acted like a “man of the people” but who in reality was a conniving, scheming snake who would say and do pretty much anything to both get what he wanted and get away with what he didn’t want others to know about.

The Politician will be released on Saturday.

Update – 5:38 PM: Reuters reports that Elizabeth and John Edwards are separated:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards and his cancer-stricken wife, Elizabeth, have separated following reports that he fathered a child with a woman who was a former campaign aide.

A source familiar with the situation confirmed on Wednesday that the Edwards, who live in North Carolina, had split up. They have been married 32 years.

Edwards, 56, unsuccessfully ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008 and was the party’s vice presidential nominee in 2004 in John Kerry’s failed bid for the White House.

A statement from Elizabeth Edwards’ publicist at Random House, which published her book last year, “Resilience,” said Elizabeth Edwards, 60, “is moving on with her life and wants to put this difficult chapter behind her.”

People Magazine has more:

After three years of standing by her husband, Elizabeth Edwards, 60, has decided to try life on her own, reports People magazine.

“She said, ‘I’ve had it. I can’t do this. I want my life back,'” her sister, Nancy Anania, tells People in its Feb. 8 issue. “She’s got cancer and has young children and totally believes in marriage, but she can only do so much,” says Anania.


Now, says People, Elizabeth has called it quits, and John, 56, has moved out. She is living in their Chapel Hill, N.C., mansion, while he divides his time between an annex they call “the barn” and their beach house 160 miles away. Elizabeth, who is still undergoing cancer treatment, has had divorce papers at the ready for a year.

People reports that last December, Elizabeth met her husband’s child with Rielle Hunter, Frances Quinn, in a meeting held at a North Carolina hotel room overseen by an intermediary. “She gave it a lot of thought, wrapped up a bunch of Christmas presents, took them to the baby and was so pleased when Quinn made a beeline to the toy carriage and doll,” Anania says. “She even said to Quinn, ‘Go stand next to Daddy.’ And she took a picture. I don’t know how she could do that,” she added. “She just has a big heart.”

But why now, three years after he first confessed the affair to his wife? Michael Cucchiara, a confident of John Edwards, tells People, “I think they realized she still doesn’t trust him and therefore they shouldn’t live together until she can.”

No statement yet from John Edwards. Not that it really matters at this point.

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