So who told George Stephanopoulos this nutty story about the secret plan to sabotage the John Edwards campaign? Because no one will admit to it.
Honestly, we thought it sounded a little bullshitty when we first heard it—Edwards staffers were going to pull a Bulworth to save the Democratic party if it looked like John might get the nomination? Really?
First of all, his appeal to our mom aside, John Edwards never did actually look like he'd get the nomination. Secondly, as Walter Shapiro points out, any smart Edwards staffer would be more focused on saving their own career than rescuing the party, and purposefully sinking your own campaign—even if it's in the service of a greater good, or whatever!—is not a good way to end up working on a future campaign.
So no one will confirm on or off the record that they'd even heard of this "plan." Edwards campaign Senior Advisor Joe Trippi called it a fantasy.
So who is Stephanopoulos covering for, here, with this crazy "party first" conspiracy? Naturally everyone has someone they blame.
It did not take many calls to the Edwards alumni association to pick up off-the-record speculation about who might have peddled the self-aggrandizing conspiracy story to Stephanopoulos. In fact, in back-to-back interviews, two Edwards campaign veterans fingered each other as the likely leaker.
So hell, we don't know. David Bonior might be close to Stephanopoulos, and a former party whip might make up this sort of "Democrat first" nonsense. Or it could've been Mudcat Saunders, who seems like he will say literally anything. His name is "Mudcat," so we'll go with him.