Yesterday's Candidate, Yesterday's Policies


You'd never know it from the concussive waves of Hillary Hype, but former Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.) is, at the moment, the Democrats' most formidable presidential candidate. A recent Newsweek poll gave him the highest favorability ratings of any Democrat in the country, with 49% liking him and 24% disliking him. Hillary's favorability was 53%, but her unfavorability was a steep 42%, and no other Democrats came close. Two weeks ago, a poll of Iowa Democrats showed Edwards leading Clinton 30-26, and lapping the rest of the field.

What's Edwards going to do with this popularity? This crap.

Ex-Sen. John Edwards (D-NC), evolving his pitch ahead of an anticipated presidential run in 2008, will propose to cut poverty by a third in 10 years, eliminate it in 30, and put in its place a "Working Society " where Americans are rewarded for hard work with a livable safety net of health and welfare incentives.

A copy of his speech distributed to reporters and embragoed until this morning shows that Edwards proposes to "radically overhaul" the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development; to create 1 million "stepping stone" jobs over the next five years, to raise the minimum wage, and to refocus the American education system.

"I propose a great national goal, because Americans believe in achieving great things," Edwards plans to say. "Like JFK challenging America to land a man on the moon, a national goal of eradicating poverty will sharpen our focus, marshal our resources and at the end of the day, bring out our best."

Edwards proposes one semi-new idea, housing vouchers that would replace much of the role of HUD. (Senator, I'm Fannie Mae. Have we met?) Pretty thin gruel if he's going after the Libertarian Democrat vote.