The eight years he spent in federal prison bar Edwin Edwards from running for statewide office for another decade or so, but a felony conviction won’t stop Louisiana’s longest-serving governor from running for Congress.
Edwards, a Democrat, who was found guilty of 17 counts of racketeering, extortion, conspiracy, and fraud in 2000 recently hinted that he may make a bid to represent Louisiana’s sixth Congressional district.
The 86-year-old ex-con reportedly told Bloomberg’s Albert Hunt, “I’m just figuring out all the legalities and how to set up a super PAC, and then I’m going.”
But his wife, Trinia Scott Edwards, insists he hasn’t yet made up his mind.
“I was there when he was on that call and he did not say that (he had decided to run),” she told The New Orleans Times Picayune. “He had definitely said he had not decided.”
Despite his past trouble with the law, Edwards seems optimistic about his chances. In the Bloomberg interview, he asserted that private polling shows he would easily qualify for Louisiana’s run-off election.
“I’m the only hope the Democrats have here,” Edwards said.
A formidable campaigner who won gubernatorial elections in 1972, 1976, 1983 and 1992, Edwards once claimed he was so popular that he couldn’t lose unless “I’m caught in bed with a dead girl or a live boy.”
A font of colorful quotes, Edwards doesn’t shy away from attacking his opponents. He once ridiculed a political challenger as so slow “it would take him an hour and a half to watch ’60 Minutes.’”
His quick wit even landed him and his wife a spot on A&E reality TV show, “The Governor’s Wife.”
But is he too old for a political comeback?
“I hope [age] is all they talk about,” Edwards quipped.