Elizabeth Edwards: John always lied about affair, Rielle Hunter is ‘pathetic’


Everything involving the John Edwards affair made me sick – the affair itself, the lies, the hypocrisy, the financial shenanigans, the way the media covered the story, and the lack of moral accountability. It was all just… gross. We had some idea that Elizabeth Edwards would write about what happened, and now she has. The New York Daily News got their hands on an advance copy of Elizabeth’s new book, Resilience.

In the book, Elizabeth writes that when she learned of the affair, she threw up. Yep, I nearly did too. She also writes that John told her of the affair in 2006, shortly after they had decided he would run again in the 2008 race. As it turns out, John even lied about the extent of the affair when he first told Elizabeth. Gross.

Elizabeth obviously felt betrayed, but she stuck with him. What really bothers me about that is not so much that both of them lied about this fake “happy family” they had, or that Elizabeth didn’t leave him, but that John Edwards basically made his dying wife part of the reason to vote for him. It’s as if he was saying to the world, “You should vote for me because I will be with Elizabeth to her last dying day, and no one else.” When he was already fooling around. Just… gross.

Campaign cad John Edwards cheating ways made his wife, Elizabeth, sick to her stomach – literally.

After the former presidential hopeful confessed his betrayal, Elizabeth Edwards writes in her new book, “I cried and screamed, I went to the bathroom and threw up.”

Elizabeth, 59, who is terminally ill with cancer, speaks in far more detail than before about her husband’s infidelity in her new memoir, “Resilience,” due to be published May 12 by Broadway Books. A copy was obtained by the Daily News.

Despite feeling deeply deceived, Elizabeth Edwards nonetheless publicly stood by her husband’s side, lending his candidacy the aura of a warm, loving family life.

But she had actually wanted him to quit the race to protect the family. Edwards admitted the hanky-panky to her days after declaring his candidacy in 2006 – almost a year before the National Enquirer reported it.

She was afraid of the destructive questions Edwards’ affair with videographer Rielle Hunter would raise.

Later events proved her right. “He should not have run,” she says.

Edwards did not publicly admit the affair until last August – seven months after he quit the race, and the National Enquirer had reported he was the father of Hunter’s infant daughter.

Edwards denied paternity, and his wife’s book doesn’t address that issue.

But it does highlight Elizabeth Edwards’ anger and sorrow at being duped by a man whose four children she’d borne and whose political ambitions she’d passionately supported for so many years.

Hunter initially seduced Edwards using a worn come-on line, Elizabeth writes: “You are so hot,” Hunter told him outside a swank New York hotel. The campaign ultimately paid Hunter $114,000 to produce a batch of short films on his candidacy.

She lashes out at Hunter, now 45, whose name she never actually uses in the book, as a parasitic groupie who invaded the Edwardses’ life.

Her own life may be tragic, she concludes, but Hunter’s is “pathetic.”

Even when Edwards confessed to his wife, he lied, claiming he had slipped up just once, Elizabeth writes. His original version of the story “left most of the truth out,” she writes.

While Elizabeth still hasn’t fully come to terms with her man’s roaming, the memoir is laced with a powerful dose of forgiveness.

“I lie in bed, circles under my eyes, my sparse hair sticking in too many directions, and he looks at me as if I am the most beautiful woman he has ever seen. It matters,” she writes.

From New York Daily News

I totally understand her anger at Rielle Hunter, but if Rielle is “pathetic”, so is John. Not only did he cheat, he lied and used Elizabeth’s illness in a really craven, sociopathic way, all to get some votes. I can understand why Elizabeth is staying with John in theory – she doesn’t have many years left, and she wants to spend this time with her husband and children. But at some point, I just feel like she needs to acknowledge that her husband was more culpable in the affair than the bimbo who got pregnant.

John and Elizabeth Edwards are shown at Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People Gala on 5/8/07. Images thanks to PR Photos.com.

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39 Responses to “Elizabeth Edwards: John always lied about affair, Rielle Hunter is ‘pathetic’”

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  1. happymom says:

    I’m not sure I could forgive him and move on. It’s not as though this was a one night stand-he had a long term relationship with this whack-job, and even had a child with her! But just like anything-unless you’ve walked in that person’s shoes, you just don’t know. . .

  2. ! says:

    From what I understand, Rielle once upon a time was *the* essential slut party girl. Think Paris Hilton on (even more) speed. Well played on her part, she’s a politician’s baby momma now.

  3. sandy says:

    she is an amazing mom to live her dying days with this loser. she has obviously put her young children’s happiness ahead of her own. i couldn’t do it.
    nasty to think: how could john enjoy time spent with hunter while wife was on chemo., sleeping, trying to get well…?

  4. lisa says:

    You can still forgive, but you always carry that horrible feeling of your man stepping out on you.

  5. Liz says:

    I don’t think he overdid her illness as a reason to vote for him. His candidacy set the frame of debates within the party and no doubt led to broader more progressive positions than Clinton’s or Obama’s. Naturally there were questions about her health that had to be addressed but I felt they did it well. She did it well, and her charm and tireless work mattered to a lot of people.

    I hate him for the political damage he may have caused the Democratic Party in a crucial election and the betrayal of others–his advisors, campaign staff, donors. Poor Joe Trippi. But that is my world, how his lies could have potentially cost something I am deeply passionate about.

    As a family, if they have found some peace and reconciliation for the rest of their time together then I am glad. But that’s their business–in my world he’s finished.

  6. Tess says:

    She’d like for us to believe that she occupies the moral high ground in this shabby saga.

    But she’s compromised, dishonest, and complicit in perpetrating a fraud.

    And for what? Power and money.

    Now, she’ll milk it for a few more bucks from the book. Shameless.

  7. Wow says:

    Warning: This will sound rude.

    Why do I get the feeling that once Elizabeth has passed on, John will be with Rielle in the similar way that Prince Charles kept Camilla around and even married her after Diana was no longer here.

    The men seem to always get a “get out of wh*re town” free card. I guess Elizabeth probably want the remaining days of her life to be as drama free as possible, so I won’t be so hard on her. But I’m with Happymom on this one – I don’t think I could do it.

  8. KansasRefugee says:

    I agree with Tess. You have to draw the line somewhere. Trying to obtain power, money and status by proxy through men is primitive and childish female behavior. She did not need to support his candidacy once she knew of the lie (it’s not like she was impoverished and without opportunities; she was not ill when she knew of the lie and abetted him; and while her children may have been important to her that is an entirely different issue than supporting a man’s ambitions, and telling other people to support him, when you KNOW he is unwilling to honor his commitments).

    Women, let’s grow up. We fought for rights to vote and opportunities in the business and political worlds for ourselves. Let’s make use of them and get out of this childish behavior of using relationships with men for these things.

  9. Raven says:

    I think Elizabeth is the real thing–brilliant woman with a heart of gold. And it is clear to me that John Edwards would be a lot less without her. Once she’s gone, he’ll probably regress to the mean and below, esp. if he ends up with Rielle or someone like her. I feel so sorry for those children.

  10. Orangejulius says:

    Given her age and her health problems, it’s understandable that she’d prefer to forgive him than be alone at this stage. Still…can’t be easy and she definitely has my sympathy.

  11. MomInNH says:

    I would have left my husband on the spot as soon as I found out about his infidelity. Period. He wants to run for office, let him. But he’d be doing it on his own. I would not support a liar and a cheat.

    Now that it’s all over with she’s writing a book to insure her childrens’ inheritance. We all know John’s not going to be getting any ringing endorcement deals coming in any time soon. Basically with her last days she’s still thinking of their children and their grandchildrens’ future…

  12. Imara219 says:

    It angers me to hear people saying she’s staying with him b/c of his political power. Ummm, hello she is terminally ill, has 4 children with him, and an established long-term relationship. They have put what 20/30 years into their marriage. I’m pretty sure she isn’t going to just let that history and foundation go because he screwed up. He owned up to it, yes it was wrong not to provide all of the details, but he did tell her about it, obviously they grew and moved on from the situation.

    I remember his run quite well and I don’t feel as if he used her illness as a way to garner votes, I’m also glad that he’s voice helped shape the campaign, and it was quite evident that they had a deep bond and connection with one another. Just b/c he fooled around once doesn’t mean he hasn’t learned his lesson and dug deep to keep his marriage rolling.

  13. Codzilla says:

    Imara: Do you really, honestly believe that Rielle was the first woman John had on the side? Please. This is the first time he got caught. And they didn’t fool around once, they had a full-blown affair that resulted in a child that he still refuses to acknowledge publicly.

    I’m not saying Elizabeth is right or wrong for staying with him (it’s her choice), but trying to paint him as anything other than a pig at this point is a futile effort, at best.

  14. KansasRefugee says:


    She was not ill when she first learned of the infidelity, they were and are very wealthy, and she is an experienced lawyer (so she could have survived financially after a divorce).

    What I think we don’t know is whether this was an agreement of their marriage (i.e., that one or both of them could have affairs). Sexual & emotional fidelity for both the husband and wife I think is the default understanding of marriage in our culture? If they had some different kind of marriage from the default I think they should have been open about that. They did make a big show of their relationship so I think they put it on the table as an issue.

    This is very primitive but prevalent human behavior (the Alpha male has multiple women, the first wife of the alpha male has informal power and influence in the culture). It is not adult human behavior, though, in my book, either by any of the primary people involved or by any of us who continue to give them credibility and influence. I do appreciate her honesty and candor, but where is her apology to us?

    Also, where is John Edwards? And why are no men speaking on this issue? Do they all have fantasies of being Alpha men with this type of marriage?

    I hope we have elected a President who genuinely respects his wife’s and daughters’ feelings and feels accountability to people he is in relation with (including us who elected him). I hope we don’t find out he turned out to be less than substantial in this way as well.

  15. kiki says:

    I never liked JohnEdwards there was something about him that irked me. i want to be mad at elizabeth for Pretending to be the dutiful wife to him to win the election.. but as it was pointed out you dont know what goes on in theor private life her kids her cancer it s her life. Yes I dont believe this is John first woman on the side and ha haa he got himseld a real prize with Riellee ( not her orginal name ) or whatever she calls her self google her she is one SHADY woman

  16. not_a_strawman says:

    @ Imara219:
    “They have put what 20/30 years into their marriage. I’m pretty sure she isn’t going to just let that history and foundation go because he screwed up.”

    I think screwed up is a huge understatement. He didn’t have a one night stand. He didn’t have a fling. He had a long RELATIONSHIP with another woman and fathered a child outside his marriage.

    And I do remember his campaign. I didn’t trust him long BEFORE this thing came out. He felt like a snake oil salesman. I also thought should be at home with his wife once news of her illness came out.

  17. Your Friend says:

    total JFK-wannabe loser….instead he looked cheaper than Clinton.

    and she stayed with him.

    cant think much of her either.

  18. PJ says:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s staying with him for the sake of the kids. Their children are going through enough with their mother having a terminal illness and their father having a scandal. She’s trying to spare them from having to face all this and a divorce, too.

  19. Gigohead says:

    Elizabeth did the right thing by not dumping her man to go into the arms of the cheap tramp Rielle. There is nothing more sweeter than not allowing her to have him all the herself. Rielle is relegated to a few stolen moments for her and her child. Who the hell wants to live like that?

    Elizabeth has guaranteed that her three remaining children have their father with them full time even if the marriage may be over. I love her thinking. I would have done the same exact thing if I were in her shoes.

    Hey, I’m a firm believer that revenge is a plate that is better served COLD. hahahahah

  20. judy says:

    All these women in here who say they wold have left right then and there are full of BS. You are dying from cancer and have 4 kids and are sick and you are going to pack up and leave?? Try a dose of reality and get off your high horses. You have no idea what you would do unless you have already done it before.

  21. Jen says:

    Imagine being John and Rielle’s “love child” in years to come. “Daddy was feeling neglected because his wife was so busy fighting her terminal cancer and caring for their children. So he and Mommy started screwing around and along came you! Of course we had to say Uncle Joe was your father while Daddy was running for office, but then the tabloids caught on, etc.”

    Start saving up for the poor kid’s therapy now.

  22. NJMDPS says:

    God bless you Elizabeth. He is a total jerk. So sorry you have to tolerate this garbage. Wish you well.

  23. Feebee says:

    I don’t quite understand the attacks on Elizabeth. I have no idea what I would do in her situation. I don’t believe she was so hungry for money and power that that was the reason she stayed with him. Couldn’t possibly be because despite of the affair she still loved him, as she has for the past 30 years? Whatever $$ she collects from the book, it’ll hardly be for her. More likely she’s thinking of her children’s future.

  24. GimmeABreak says:

    Oh my…he wasn’t honest? Gee, how shocking.

  25. gg says:

    This cheating man makes me feel sick.

  26. eternalcanadian says:

    she’s one to talk. calling the john’s baby mama pathetic when she herself is pathetic for staying with a guy who couldn’t keep his pecker in his pants nor be bothered to put a condom on all the while she was fighting for her life with cancer. yeah, good going elizabeth, i’m impressed, not.

  27. ms adamantia claus says:

    Rielle is lucky ELizabeth is a classy woman, it would never occur to her kick Rielle’s ass, but I truly hope that she has some friends who would do the honors. If I were her friend I’d wouldve done it and gladly kicked Rielle’s ugly ass til my kneecap caught fire. I’dve videotaped it and put it on YouTube. Then John would be next.
    I sincerely hope that people openly and rudely shun this very shabby, worn out “thing” that slunk out of the ooze and entered this family’s life. Its not about 2 adults getting together, its about once she foumd out that infidelity wasnt really on the mind of this lonely, vulnerable man going thru something emotionally draining and despite knowing the fact that the wife was dying, SHE STILL PURSUED HIM, IN FRONT OF HER UNDER THE GUISE OF MAKING A FILM. It takes a special kind ( and I dont mean that as a compliment in any way) of scumbag who can LIE UP with a man, a sorry assed man at that, in that situation, how do you ignore the woman dying of cancer being cuckcolded in this situation? How SLIMY did John feel when he crawled home? A real woman who respected herself wouldve have REMOVED herself from such an act, any person with ANY kind of self respect would NEVER have allowed a CHILD an innocent to be born of such a union. When she grows up, she can explain to her daughter what a piece of absolute trash WHORE her mother is and hope this child will be able to get over her very existence having come of such pain and sin. And whatever powerbroker that paid her to set up and bring down the idiot Mr Edwards turned out to be.
    Yeah. I said it. And I’d say it to that bony ugly harlot’s face.

  28. Ned says:

    I’m a bit confused.

    “She also writes that John told her of the affair in 2006″,

    but the affair was well underway during the campaign and the campaign donations also financed Hunter’s “employment” and so he could keep her around and make her think he is serious about her.

    He fathered a child last year and not on 2006-7.

    If anything, Hunter sounds like a troubled woman is has some problems and is more passive than John.

    Elizabeth agreed to participate in that act to help him become the candidate and by doing so, she endangered the future of the democratic party.

    I do not hear her taking responsibility in deceiving the public and helping him play this hypocrisy game.

    I can’t help but wonder how much her own ambition to gain status and be the first lady, played into that.

  29. Marilyn says:

    First let me say – I think John Edwards is a coward and is despeciable man. None of us are privy to the details of the affair timeline. But I’ve followed and read enough up to this point that John wasn’t truthful when he admitted the affair to Elizabeth. Since, tidbits have been leaked from Elizabeth’s new book, even when he told her about the affair he said “it was one time he had slipped with Rielle” was a lie. John has been lying to Elizabeth just as he lied to the press when confronted in October 2007 and every time after that until August 8 2008 when he finally admitted the affair on Nightline but he lied during the admission. He never stopped the affair even when Elizabeth confronted him right after he announced running for President in late 2006. His affair with Rielle never ended. He saw her three times in 2008 March 20, June 18 and July 21 when he was confronted at the Beverly Hilton hotel by the reporter from the National Enquirer. I’ve read he lives at the Edwardses beach house in Wilmington, NC so they are still married but they aren’t living together. My guess is Elizabeth has “forgiven” but its still a “work in progress”. I’d bet money Rielle is still whisphering in John’s ear to leave Elizabeth. Isn’t North Carolina one of a few states where committing adultry is considered illegal? If that’s true, Elizabeth could get all their money if she decided to divorce him. John’s not going to give up everything for the slut but he will once Elizabeth is gone.

  30. tigerlille says:

    I could not understand what would reduce a classy woman like Elizabeth to write an autobiography that discussed her husband’s tawdry affair. Then I read MomInNH’s post suggesting that she wrote the book to earn money to leave for her children. It is the only explanation that makes sense.

    I wish you peace and freedom from suffering, Elizabeth.

  31. Connie says:

    Why do women go after the mistress, and why do people call her the whack job? When the whack job is the husband who cheated. This is not John Edwards’ first affair,it is the first one to gain national attention. I have lost all respect I had for Elizabeth, who is exploiting her husband’s affair. I honestly don’t know which is them is worse.

  32. Connie says:

    Also, most women in America live in the same 1,500 square foot home with the cheating son of a gun and suffer silently, but Elizabeth Edwards lives separate from her husband in a 25,000 square foot home and writes a book for sympathy. They deserve each other.

  33. Leah says:

    I think she knows her days are numbered, and for these last days she would rather just blame Rielle completely, instead of coming to terms with the fact that her husband that she trusted broke her trust and her heart 100%.

    That would make her last days even more painful… and she’s got enough physical and emotional pain already with the cancer and all of this.

    I feel so bad for her.

    John and Rielle are BOTH to blame. I hate people who cheat.

  34. Thelmacynthia says:

    John Edwards is a pompus arragont son
    of a bitch.

  35. thelmacynthia says:

    He is a lier. I could not figure
    out why she wrote the book. Was it
    to get more money from us, was it to
    stick it to her husband and let the
    world know he’s a lier or was it for
    her own peace of mind….

  36. Brian says:

    John will not end up with Rielle when Elizabeth passes on. What happens with men like John is that they’re never satisfied with what they have, so the moment something more exciting comes along, to hell with any previous promises. Rielle is naive for believing she’s somehow going to put and end to this cycle of frauds because it’s a permanent character defect of John Edwards. Always will be.

  37. MSat says:

    Let’s get one thing straight: Elizabeth Edwards is a good woman. Her only flaw is loving, supporting and believing in a bad man. Even after the truth came out – which it always does- she still feels some sense of loyalty and obligation to this man. We can’t judge her for that. There are many more women like her out there. (I was one of them.)

    John Edwards is a pathological liar. He lied to the American people, he lied to his supporters, he probably lied to this Rielle bitch and he most definitely lied to Elizabeth. He is probably still lying to her, and will continue to do so until she dies. Men like Edwards are so used to lying about everything, they don’t even know what the truth is anymore. Lying is like breathing to them and they are very, very good at it.

  38. Весьма возможно. Иногда так случается.