Monday, February 12, 2007

John Edwards

Evaluating John Edwards for endorsement has been something of a challenge. I tried to maintain my objectivity in the matter, but I am surely swayed by the fact that I liked him as a candidate in 2004. In an attempt to be objective I found myself looking for reasons to not endorse him for 2008.

After much searching I concluded that John Edwards is a better candidate now that he was in 2004. He appears to have learned much from his previous presidential run while maintaining the optimist and idealism which were some of his strengths last time. While I do not agree with every one of his positions on every issue I think that he has the character to make a good president and the ability to bring this nation together in ways that would be impossible for some other candidates.

He is honest enough to admit that his desire for universal health care is probably not attainable without a tax increase. This kind of candor before being elected bodes well for any potential public servant.

I made the decision harder than necessary. In the end, I easily endorse John Edwards for President in 2008. He is a capable candidate and I believe that he would make an admirable president.

5 comments:

The Tufted One said...

Do you remember that Edwards made his fortune from being a trial lawyer? (Those scummy attorneys who put ads on TV? Those attorneys who are not "real" attorneys?)

From Wikipedia: "Edwards made his personal fortune through his trial successes and his 2003 financial disclosure forms showed a total net worth between $12.8 and $60 million. Edwards was criticized for paying himself mostly through subchapter S corporate dividends, rather than a salary, to take advantage of a tax-law loophole that allowed him to avoid paying $591,000 in Medicare taxes; Edwards claimed that he chose the subchapter S structure to protect his assets from liability.[4]"

Also see:
http://news.findlaw.com/newsmakers/john.edwards.html
http://john-kerry.tonyspencer.com/edwards-trial-lawyer.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Edwards
http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/copland200407080820.asp

I wouldn't vote for him.

David said...

Well, you'll never be forced to vote for him.

While I do not care much for the complexities of our current tax system, I have no personal complaints about people taking advantage of that complexity - so long as what they are doing is not illegal or immoral.

The public disclosure of these facts suggests that what he did was not illegal. Different people will have different views of what constitutes "immoral" with regard to tax law. I'm not even going to go there.

I do think it is an interesting contradiction that John Edwards wants to promote universal health care and yet he personally kept more than half a million dollars out of our existing health care system.

Peonicus said...

Take away that tax loophole, and there will be an almighty outcry from the small business sector. I think it's sixes that he did it; the law was there, he took advantage of it, too bad it hurt the medicaid program. However, from what I understand, Mr. Edwards made his money by suing doctors, I'd say that puts him nearly at the bottom of the barrel right next to criminal defense attorneys for the wealthy.

Peonicus said...

Sorry, I just checked out his record and not only med mal, he branched out to personal injury, products liability, and motor vehicle injury. His ranking stays the same.

David said...

Just a little reminder to go add comments to my live site davidjmiller.org

All comments have been moved over there and new posts will be found there as well.

As for Edwards and the loophole I stand by my previous position - if you don't like the loophole close it. If its there it's legal. On how he made his living - I don't have enough information to judge.