John Edwards’ Legal Troubles Continue To Simmer

It doesn’t grab headlines very often, but the Federal Grand Jury investigating former Senator John Edwards is continuing its work:

Two of former presidential hopeful John Edwards’ top aides testified Thursday to a federal grand jury looking into payments from the North Carolina Democrat’s campaign to his one-time mistress.

Jonathan Prince, who was Edwards’ deputy campaign manager during his unsuccessful 2008 presidential run, and then-spokesman Jennifer Palmieri were called before the grand jury, two sources familiar with the case said.

This comes amid the Justice Department’s investigation into money that went from Edwards’ campaign and from his supporters to Rielle Hunter, who was a videographer with the campaign.

The grand jury has been meeting at the federal courthouse in Raleigh, North Carolina, since last year.

Prince spent four hours in the Raleigh, North Carolina, courthouse on Thursday, reported CNN affiliate WTVD, while Palmieri was inside for about an hour. Both refused comment to reporters as they left the courtroom.

Edwards began his affair with Hunter in 2006, fathering a daughter — Frances Quinn — with her. Yet the former senator denied paternity for more than a year before admitting in January 2010 that he was the father. A week later, Edwards and his wife, Elizabeth, announced they were separating.

In October, Edwards’ attorney Wade Smith said that a “sizable” number of subpoenas had been issued in the case.

The affair, of course, is not a legal problem, but the use of campaign funds from a Presidential campaign to support Hunter during her pregnancy would be a serious Federal crime, and an indictment would just be another in the long line of embarrassments that Edwards has suffered over the past two years. As Joe Gandelman said, it couldn’t happen to a more well-deserving guy.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2008, Quick Takes, US Politics,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook