John Edwards won't be getting Rick Warren's vote: "John Edwards and others like him have lost the trust of America because they lied, and fundamentally beneath every affair it's dishonesty, its deceit, its deception," Warren tells ABC's Tapper. "They're lying to God. They're lying to themselves. They're lying to their wives and they're lying to the public. How do you trust someone who's constantly lying? You can't."
On adulterers more generally: "If you can't keep your faith to your most sacred vow – ''til death do us part' -- how in the world can I trust you to lead my family, my government?"
(How did McCain's first marriage end again?)
New details on the John Edwards story that don't make anyone look good. Dallas lawyer Fred Baron (he of the apparent hush money to Rielle Hunter) was behind the December statements that appeared to clear Edwards' name.
"After initially saying that he did not know how the lawyers were chosen to represent Ms. Hunter and Mr. Young, Mr. Baron acknowledged that he might have played a role," Serge F. Kovaleski and Mike McIntire write in The New York Times. "The revelations of ties among the lawyers emerged through public records and interviews with people close to Mr. Edwards and Ms. Hunter, which suggested that their affair went on longer than Mr. Edwards admitted and that the effort to conceal it by Mr. Edwards's inner circle was much more extensive than has been reported."
"The review found that Mr. Edwards's political action committee went to unusual lengths to make a final $14,000 payment to Ms. Hunter's film company months after its contract with the committee had ended," they continue. "Furthermore, a woman who helped Ms. Hunter create a Web site on New Age spirituality in 2006 says she regularly corresponded with her about a married North Carolina man named John whom Ms. Hunter was dating in March of that year, if not earlier. Mr. Edwards has said his affair with Ms. Hunter did not begin until after she had started doing video work for his political action committee months later."
(Note: Obama aides are still not saying whether Baron continues to raise money for them.)
One area where Obama is not rolling over: Responding to the smears. The aggressive pushback has begun: detailed rebuttals, extensive surrogate work, and a big push to discredit the purveyors of lies and half-truths.
"The Obama campaign is mapping out an aggressive counter-attack against the new Swift-Boat-Vet style book targeting Obama -- including plans to dig more deeply into the author's past statements, plans for increased surrogate action against the book, and stepped up pressure on high-level media executives to let the Obama team have air time to rebut the charges," Greg Sargent reports for Talking Points Memo. "The planning reflects an uncomfortable reality for the Obama camp: They realize that the book, and any ensuing GOP attacks in its wake, are certain to continue to get extensive media coverage."
"Beyond the questionable and disputed claims in Corsi's anti-Obama book and the one Corsi co-authored in 2004, 'Unfit for Command,' which sought to discredit Kerry's Vietnam war service, Corsi has, as a poster on the conservative site freerepublic.com, made a number of comments that are pretty out there," ABC's Jake Tapper reports. (He has, among many other writings, disparaged the Pope, called Arabs "ragheads" and "women-haters," and peddled some bizarre World Trade Center rumors.)