I’ve been writing about John Edwards and Rielle Hunter since 2008. This much I knew from the beginning: Edwards and his wife, Elizabeth, lied, lied and lied.

Edwards lied from the beginning about having an affair with Hunter, then he lied about fathering her child. He lied to Bob Woodruff on ABC in the summer of 2008 during an interview in his own home. Elizabeth Edwards was not on camera, but as my’ sources said then, she knew the whole story, she orchestrated the interview, and told Edwards what to say.

At the end of the summer of 2008, I reported that Edwards had gone to the Beverly Hilton Hotel in June 2008 to see Hunter and discuss their situation. A former campaign worker spotted him entering surreptitiously through the hotel’s garage, and offered to have a drink with him. Edwards said yes, then disappeared into an elevator that bypassed the lobby.

Through the fall of 2008, I wrote about Hunter and baby Quinn. I was in touch with her friends. They told me the baby was Edwards’. When’Edwards’ friend Fred Baron died in October 2008, Hunter’s money was cut off. Baron had been underwriting her rented home in Santa Barbara, Calif. When the lease ran out, Hunter and Quinn went to live in New Jersey with a friend.

Edwards, I wrote then, kept calling Hunter and telling’her he couldn’t get her any money because Elizabeth controlled their checkbooks. She would know if a big chunk of money vanished, he told Hunter. He also kept telling Hunter he loved her.

At the end of February 2009 I published a picture of Hunter and Quinn on the child’s first birthday. You can still find it on the Internet. Quinn was looking more and more like Edwards, who was still publicly denying paternity. Then Elizabeth Edwards published a book called “Resilience,” went on “Oprah,” and was cagey about the paternity issue.

It’s a sad story. Elizabeth Edwards has incurable cancer. She is a smart woman with a lot of gifts, and she’s saddled with a rat. She is also a liar. She knew this whole story a long time ago. She published “Resilience,” launched a line of home furnishings, and bad-mouthed Hunter all the time. She is very likely the source of most of the National Enquirer items, she or one of her people. Hunter’s side knew that for a long time, too, because they weren’t talking to the press.

Rielle Hunter was born Lisa Druck. The name Hunter came from her first husband. The “Rielle” she changed later. She was not a fortune hunter or gold digger. She was simply available and interested.’Elizabeth Edwards has made it seem — in the Enquirer, and in the book “Game Changer” — that somehow Hunter targeted John in the Regency Hotel in New York. This is to suggest that John was somehow a victim. Hardly.

Edwards’knew what he was doing when he fell in love with Hunter. Like Tiger Woods, Republicans and Democrats,’and a lot of other powerful men, he was living a double life, compartmentalized. He exited suddenly from the presidential campaign on Jan. 31, 2008, because of this — two years ago next Sunday. Two years of lying. Many lives destroyed. Thank goodness he was never president.

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