Washington Starts Pretending It Liked Elizabeth Edwards

Click to viewElizabeth Edwards, the long-suffering wife of crinkly-faced twit John Edwards, died today after a long battle with breast cancer. So get ready for D.C. establishment types who hated her when she was alive to pretend they admired and liked her!

Edwards, who was smart and ambitious and realistic about her stupid husband and their doomed relationship, was widely disliked by the D.C. pundit class, as our own Alex Pareene documented last year. Why? I could speculate, but it would involve me spending more than ten seconds thinking about Maureen Dowd's feelings, so I won't. And, in the end, no matter how "difficult" Edwards might have been in real life, she didn't deserve the bizarrely personal, kick-her-while-she's-down attacks she had to put up with from people like Dowd.

So it was a special treat to see, as Pareene writes, Time magazine hack Mark Halperin on Chris Matthews' show today, solemnly telling Matthews that Edwards was "valiant," and "so strong" and "a very tough person." Are you sure that's all you want to say, Mark? Because you had a lot of important insight into her personality in your book Game Change! Like how, according to unnamed "Edwards insiders," she was " abusive, intrusive, paranoid, [and] condescending." Oh, and a "crazy-woman"!

But surely Halperin won't be the last pundit who smeared Edwards to suddenly proclaim awe at her "strength" or intelligence or whatever. Who's next? Dowd, maybe? Moe Tkacik suggests Tina Brown. Personally, I'm hoping it's Sally Quinn. Surely, the "On Faith" section of journalism's own little cesspool, The Washington Post, deserves a Quinn-penned remembrance of Edwards?

[Salon]