Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The John Edwards Love Quadrangle

In politicians' philandering, from JFK to Bill Clinton and beyond, "love means never having to say you're sorry" (to quote the soupy 1970s movie) until your enablers run out of ways to keep you from getting caught.

Few have gone as far as Andrew Young, who tried to take a bullet for John Edwards by claiming he was the father of Rielle Hunter's baby, but greater love hath no man than...you know the rest.

In her coming-out interview in GQ, Hunter says casually, "Andrew was in love with Johnny...Beyond. And I believe he loved Johnny more than he loved Cheri [his wife]."

In their Oprah appearance last month, the Youngs confirmed their unconditional devotion. "We did everything," Mrs. Young said. "Both of us...It was extreme. We never, never said no," her husband adding, "Any time he got into any kind of hot water and needed something, he called me."

Now, with Edwards in permanent publicity hell, the quadrangle survivors are doing considerably better than their love object. Elizabeth Edwards is suing for divorce and her share of the family money, the Youngs are profiting from a best-selling book after escaping jail for possession of the infamous sex tape, while Hunter surfaces posing with her baby for a long New-Agey interview about their "profound," "till-death do us part" passion.

But there are always media flies in the ointment. Hunter, Barbara Walters tells us, cried over the phone for two hours over "repulsive" GQ photos of her in a man's shirt, string of pearls and nothing else. (But she may take some consolation from the fact that Jenny Sanford posed similarly for Vogue, looking quite elegant. But then again, since Mrs. Sanford was the wronged wife, maybe not.)

Meanwhile, Edwards was last sighted doing penance in Haiti after the earthquake, as the rest of the crew goes on with their lives, sadder but wiser.

"It's broken my heart," Andrew Young told Oprah, "that somebody who I considered my best friend lied to and then ran over me with a dump truck backward and forward."

So far, the object of Young's affection has shown no signs of saying he's sorry.

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