Report: John Edwards Proposes to Rielle Hunter Weeks After Wife's Death
By Zach Dionne Posted Jan 7th 2011 11:24AM
According to the National Enquirer, John Edwards proposed to mistress Rielle Hunter three weeks after wife Elizabeth Edwards died of cancer. The Enquirer isn't always a bastion of credibility, but its track record with Edwards is notable. The tabloid broke accurate news of the then-presidential candidate's affair in 2007 and eventually picked up steam for a potential Pulitzer Prize win.
The Enquirer reports Edwards recently took Hunter and their 2-year-old daughter, Frances Quinn, on a holiday getaway. "The callous ex-senator introduced his children to Rielle Hunter -- who had destroyed his 33-year marriage and gave birth to his love child," the paper writes in its cover story.
A source told RadarOnline.com the day after Elizabeth Edwards' death, "Rielle has been very patient through all of this. She still believes that John is her soul mate, and she thinks that they're going to get married."
UPDATE: A "family spokesman" tells The Daily Beast: "I can tell you that it's not true. I have no idea where it's coming from. I wouldn't begin to speculate about the Enquirer's sources."
Enquirer executive editor Barry Levine told The Daily Beast that denial from Edwards' camp can't be taken seriously. "Many people deny affairs, but when you've denied your own flesh and blood, nothing this guy [Edwards] says can be taken at face value. We've had very good sources on this from the get-go."
Among the Enquirer's new claims, it says Hunter asked John's children to "call me mommy," and Edwards voiced his goal to "become one big, happy family." The tabloid teases to its print edition for photos of Edwards, Rielle and the children poolside on vacation.
Edwards acknowledged the affair in January 2010, saying in a statement: "I am truly sorry. I am Quinn's father. I will do everything in my power to provide her with the support she deserves."
He added in an ABC interview, "I made a very serious mistake, a mistake I am responsible for and no one else."
In a massive GQ interview in March 2010, Hunter expressed deep sympathy for the fading Elizabeth Edwards. "Oh, my God, I have such compassion for her. I really do. I mean, especially when you have terminal cancer ... I watched my father die of cancer. It's heart-wrenching to me. But it's also really sad to me, her unwillingness to take responsibility for her part in the marriage."
Hunter also spoke out about the Edwards affair, contending the illicit romance was independent from the breakdown of John's marriage to Elizabeth. "Infidelity doesn't happen in healthy marriages. The break in the marriage happens before the infidelity. And that break happened, you know, two and a half decades before I got there. So the home was wrecked already. I was not the home wrecker."
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