Liberal Charlotte Observer takes Edwards to task

This is my ‘hometown’ paper, notoriously liberal – a virtual reprint of the NYTimes. But today, they pull no punches with John Kerry’s VP running mate John Edwards, Senator from this great state when it comes to him touting his empty record on the Senate Intelligence Committee:

Yet this man who has proven himself so quick has touted a record that is transparent.

Mr. Edwards’ grounding to serve as vice president has drawn questions from the beginning of this campaign. He had been in Washington only five years when he announced his own presidential bid. Before that, as a citizen, he hardly even voted. He must convince Americans he is well-prepared to lead even without seasoning.

Given that, Mr. Edwards and the Kerry-Edwards campaign like to cite his membership on the Senate Intelligence Committee since 2001 to counter suggestions that he has too little foreign policy experience.

Mr. Edwards mentioned it during his acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention. Kerry and his campaign staff cited it time and again after Mr. Edwards was picked as running mate.

Yet when a vice presidential candidate touts his record as evidence of his ability, that record better stand up. This one does not.

Mr. Edwards was an active member of the Senate Intelligence Committee early on. But his seat has been mostly empty since 2003. Most recently, on Tuesday, he missed a committee vote on the nomination of Rep. Porter Goss, R-Fla., as the next CIA director.

Wow! There’s hope for the Observer after all :)