Hurting in opinion polls and haunted by charges of lavish personal spending, Democrat John Edwards took his presidential campaign on Monday to some of the most impoverished parts of the country. With America’s poor the crux of his campaign, the former vice presidential candidate launched an eight-state tour in New Orleans, a city that exposed U.S. poverty to a global audience following Hurricane Katrina in August 2005. His focus on poverty challenges his top Democratic rivals, Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, and enables Edwards to present himself as a leader with a cause bigger than his own ambition, analysts said. “This is not a political strategy. This is a huge moral issue facing America”
Indeed it is. Critics of Edwards might legitimately ask the question as to what government policy could do to address the poverty problem. That is a fair question – and let’s have that debate.