Former Sen. Edwards says Democrats need to show 'backbone'

Stephanie

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Today: September 11, 2006 at 12:55:15 PDT
:food1:

By RYAN NAKASHIMA
ASSOCIATED PRESS

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Possible presidential candidate and former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards told some 3,400 union delegates and others Monday that the Democratic Party needs to show "a little backbone" by taking up the cause of universal health care again.

"One of the ways we can show some backbone and courage is we can speak out and we can say we're not for access to health care ... and all those weasel words that politicians like to use," he said.

"We're for universal health care for every single man, woman and child in America and we are going to fight for it every single day when we're running this country, when we're running the Congress, when we're running the White House. "

Edwards, the Democratic nominee for vice president in 2004, appeared with other party stalwarts such as former President Jimmy Carter at a convention of the Laborers' International Union of North America to make the case to attendees to elect Democrats in November. New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, also considered a possible presidential contender, was to address the convention later in the day.

Nevada has taken on new importance on the Democratic presidential primary calendar after the party moved last month to sandwich Nevada's caucus between first-in-the-nation Iowa and New Hampshire in January.

The shake-up was backed by Democratic leaders who want to add more Hispanic and black voters to the voter pool picking the party nominee, and give Democrats an early foothold in the West, a region increasingly seen as a key to winning the general election.

Jimmy Carter, speaking in place of his incapacitated son, Nevada U.S. Senate candidate Jack Carter, said the Bush administration had strayed from American values and should be held to account for the war in Iraq on false premises.

His son continued to suffer from severe colitis, an inflammation of the colon, since being hospitalized on Thursday, but was steadily recovering, said spokesman Jay Jones.

"I think it's very important that all of us combine our efforts in the next few months to make sure that the administration in Washington is restrained," the elder Carter said.

"This year and two years from now, we're going to change this country," he said to a standing ovation.

Both Carter and Edwards argued that the nation needs to raise its minimum wage, which stands at $5.15 an hour, although several states have set it higher.

Edwards called the rate an "embarrassment." "It ought to be at least $7.50 an hour," he said.

Richardson was expected to implore union members to elect governors in key states, including Democratic state Sen. Dina Titus, who faces Republican U.S. Rep. Jim Gibbons to replace the term-limited Republican governor of Nevada, Kenny Guinn.

"If we win governors' races in '06, we set the groundwork to take back the White House in '08," Richardson said in prepared remarks. "Can we do it? We must do it for all the working men and women of this country."

The Laborers' union has about 700,000 members, mostly in the construction industry.
http://www.lasvegassun.com/sunbin/stories/nevada/2006/sep/11/091110882.html
 

Hagbard Celine

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"One of the ways we can show some backbone and courage is we can speak out and we can say we're not for access to health care ... and all those weasel words that politicians like to use," he said.

"We're for universal health care for every single man, woman and child in America and we are going to fight for it every single day when we're running this country, when we're running the Congress, when we're running the White House. "
God forbid right?
 

musicman

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God forbid right?
I admire your candor, Hagbard. Not many liberals will admit unapologetically that they are socialists; you and former senator Edwards appear to be the two exceptions. Bravo, sir.
 

Avatar4321

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is it too much to ask people to stop with the partisan crap for a day to remember those who have died?
 

musicman

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is it too much to ask people to stop with the partisan crap for a day to remember those who have died?
With respect for, and cognizance of, what you are saying, Avatar, the worst miseries ever wrought upon mankind have sprung from lies. That Islamofascism can be appeased or ignored out of existence is the lie that brought us the horrible day we now commemorate. Socialism is likewise a lie - and a far more murderous one. Much as we'd like to believe it possible, fighting lies can never "take the day off".
 

onedomino

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The government does almost nothing right. From education to energy policy to finding and destroying OBL. Now Edwards and other Demos want the government to be in charge of health care. Will they do as good a job as they did with Katrina?
 

Hobbit

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I'm not so worried about the Democrats' backbone as I am what's directly above it.
 

JeffWartman

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The government does almost nothing right. From education to energy policy to finding and destroying OBL. Now Edwards and other Demos want the government to be in charge of health care. Will they do as good a job as they did with Katrina?

I made this point a couple months ago and most people disagreed.]

The government goes very little correctly.
 

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