John Edwards' curious choice of pronouns


Geraldine Sealey
June 30, 2004 2:10AM (UTC)

Dick Gephardt isn't even the choice of Missouri Democratic Party leaders to be John Kerry's vice presidential nominee. Instead, eight of 11 rank and file county chairs in Mo., went with the flashier John Edwards, when asked by the AP. "Gephardt just doesn't have the get-up-and-go that Edwards has," said Irma Brannum of Poplar Bluff, the Butler County party chairwoman. "Edwards is the exciting one," said St. Charles County chairman Joe Koester. Of course, support of local party leaders won't determine Kerry's choice in the end.

And Edwards is threatening to upstage Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack in his home state, too. Or at least some could accuse him of trying to. The Des Moines Register points out that Edwards stole the show at the Iowa Democratic party convention over the weekend. Edwards is popular there -- he took a surprising second place in the caucuses earlier this year and gave a rousing speech, not so subtly using the pronoun "we" and "us" to refer to John Kerry and himself.

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"John Kerry and I both learned so much from you," Edwards said, referring to their time campaigning in Iowa. "What's going to happen between now and November is the American people are going to see what you and I have seen, what I saw in this presidential campaign, what the men who served under John Kerry in Vietnam saw: a man of strength, courage, determination, vision."

As for Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack, he hasn't campaigned for the veep slot nearly as aggressively (some may say shamelessly) as Edwards. But he made the case for himself in an interview with the Register this week. "The frustration is that we've got a great story," Vilsack said. "I'm part of it, obviously, and I'm proud to be part of it, but I'm not all of it We've governed well, and we've politicked well," he said. "I've never lost an election, and I'm the only Democratic governor elected in 1998 or 1999 who's still governing."


Geraldine Sealey

Geraldine Sealey is senior news editor at Salon.com.

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