The resurrection of John Edwards, erstwhile presidential candidate and philanderer, has begun. Not content with simply restarting his career as a trial lawyer after the debacle of his affair with his campaign videographer and her subsequent pregnancy and his trial on corruption charges, Edwards made the announcement of his return with the help of a public relations agency. He is reopening his law practice by rejoining his former partner, David F. Kirby, to form Edwards Kirby, where his daughter, Cate Edwards, who went to Harvard law school, will join him on the payroll.
Edwards pontificated, “The reason we formed this firm is because we all believe in the same thing — in standing up for the disenfranchised and those who need an equal chance. That’s why we exist.” In May 2012, Edwards’ corruption trial ended in a mistrial on five charges and an acquittal on the sixth, allowing him to restart his career. He had been charged with misusing almost $1 million in campaign donations so he could prevent the public from finding out about his pregnant mistress while he ran for president in 2008.
His former wife, Elizabeth Edwards, who died of breast cancer in 2010, had separated from him that year after she found out about the affair.
Edwards would not confirm rumors that he has been dating a 35-year-old single mother, only insisting that he was intent on being a good father to his younger children; Emma Claire, 15, Jack, 13, and Frances Quinn Hunter, 5, the daughter from his affair with Rielle Hunter.
Michael Bonderer, who runs Homes from the Heart, has worked with Edwards in El Salvador and Haiti to build houses for the poor, said, “Poor Edwards has to deal with a cynicism no matter what. He’s got to walk the gauntlet no matter what. He’s just going to have to invest the time to go through all that.”
Edwards had become rich as a plaintiffs’ lawyer, by winning multimillion dollar cases involving catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases.
Speaking of his own acquittal, Edwards said loftily, “I trust juries. They closely listen to the evidence that’s presented to them. They listen to the law and, they collectively do what they believe is right. My years in courtrooms, both as a lawyer and in what I just went through, lead me to that same conclusion.” He wasn’t worried that his past would stop clients from hiring him, saying, “You build trust and earn respect the same way today as the first day I started practicing law. By hard work, by caring about the people you represent, by presenting your case in the most thorough and professional manner possible and by arguing your heart out.”
Edwards concluded by asserting, “If you’ve been treated unfairly and you believe you have a legal case, all of us at Edwards Kirby are available to help you.”