After months of speculation about a possible Edwards endorsement, the news came down just minutes ago that Edwards will be endorsing Barack Obama, which probably isn’t much surprise since Obama’s nearly the presumed nominee.
The report from Fox News:
Ending months of speculation, former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards plans to endorse Barack Obama at a rally in Grand Rapids, Mich., Wednesday evening.
The announcement is expected at 6:30 p.m. ET.
Edwards is not a superdelegate, but his endorsement has been persistently sought by Obama and Hillary Clinton ever since the former North Carolina senator dropped out of the primary contest at the end of January.
Until now, Edwards has given only scattered clues to where he might lean. Even when his state of North Carolina voted last Tuesday, he kept his name out of the mix.
Fairly expected since it seemed clear Edwards was holding out for the presumptive nominee.
We’ll have the video up after the endorsement at 6:30pm eastern time.
More as it develops…
Here’s about a minute of video from MSNBC:
Story from the New York Times on Edwards VP speculation and the endorsement:
At a rally in Grand Rapids, Mich., on Wednesday evening, John Edwards endorsed Barack Obama, who was on the stage with him, to be the Democratic nominee for president.
Sounding a theme of a nation divided into parts by walls, Mr. Edwards said, â€œThe reason I am here tonight is that Democratic voters in America have made their choice and so have I.â€
Mr. Edwards then went on to say, â€œThere is one man who knows in his heart that it is time to tear down that wall and make one America, Barack Obama.â€
Mr. Obama, who had introduced Mr. Edwards as â€œone of the great leaders we have in the Democratic Party, â€ responded by saying he was grateful to him for coming to Michigan and giving his endorsement.
Mr. Edwards also noted how Mr. Edwards and his wife, Elizabeth, had emphasized health care as an issue that is of primary concern, then said it would be a major issue in his administration.
The endorsement comes at a time when the appeal of Mr. Obama appears to be lagging among white, blue-collar voters, a group to which Mr. Edwards openly appealed.
Mr. Edwardsâ€™s endorsement also brings in tow 19 convention delegates he won in early party selections. He could certainly urge them to give their support to Mr. Obama, though they would not be obligated by party rules to do so.
Mr. Edwards had campaigned for the Democratic nomination for 13 months before dropping out of the race in January. He had been the first major Democrat to declare his candidacy.
Although Mr. Edwards had declined to endorse either of his rivals, there were signs that his political positions were more closely aligned with those of Mr. Obama than Mrs. Clinton. Most of Mr. Edwardsâ€™s former staff and advisers, including David E. Bonior, his former national campaign chairman, declared their support for Mr. Obama after Mr. Edwards left the race.
Here’s the bottom line:
Mr. Edwards has carefully played down his aspirations for an administration role. In an interview in January, he said he would not accept a vice-presidential spot or Cabinet position. â€œNo, absolutely not,â€ he said, shaking his head emphatically when asked.
But privately, he told aides that he would consider the role of vice president, and favored the position of attorney general, which would appeal to his experience of decades spent in courtrooms as a trial lawyer in North Carolina; and his desire to follow in the footsteps of Robert F. Kennedy, one of his heroes.
So in actuality he’d accept a VP or AG spot it seems. More video and information as it develops.
Longer video on the endorsement: