By Forgiving Bad Girls, John Edwards Pulls a Trump

Matt Lewis
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Posted: Feb 09, 2007 1:57 PM

I see a lot of similarities between the Donald Trump/Miss USA ordeal and the recent John Edwards/Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan scandal.

Like the Trump incident, the John Edwards blogger controversy perfectly illustrated how far we've sunk as a society: Edwards' presidential campaign essentially turned into a reality show, sort of like the Apprentice, where the big question of the day wasn't about Edwards' foreign policy program, but in answering the question: "Will he keep them -- or won't he?" 

While a lot of smart people thought Edwards' mistake wasn't in retaining his two now infamous bloggers -- it was in not immediately rushing to their defense -- I think Edwards played his cards just right. He essentially followed the path of PR genius Donald Trump.  By building anticipation and prolonging his decision before finally "rescuing" these two misguided girls who, after all, made a few mistakes, Edwards became the good guy.

Remember how Trump made us all wait for his decision on whether or not to "fire" Miss USA? Edwards sort of did the same thing.

Come to think of it; Trump and Edwards have a lot in common. Both guys are loaded -- both do the same sort of hair thing -- and more importantly (to this story) -- both are older men who have come to the aid of a young maiden in distress.

By choosing to "forgive" youthful indiscretions and "give them a second chance," Trump and Edwards both garnered a ton of media exposure while branding themselves as kind and forgiving (and the girls became the victims).

(Keep in mind that though you and I may know what these young ladies did and said, the average person isn't a political junkie. All they know is that Edwards was "nice" to these misguided youths).

Both Trump and Edwards gained immense publicity because of these little mini-scandals. And they both came out looking like the wiser-older man who was just protecting a little misguided angel (even if, in Edwards’ case, these angels were foul-mouthed, anti-Catholic little angels.)

Let's be honest, between reality television and our "celebrity culture/ E Channel mentality," our whole world has changed. And if you think it hasn't affected politics -- think again.

But the big question is: Will Rosie O'Donnell weigh in on this? 

(Note: The title of this was almost "The John' channels 'The Don")