More headlines: John Edwards on Civil Rights

(Following are older quotations. Click here for main quotations.)

I support affirmative action

I support affirmative action.
Source: 2004 Presidential National Political Awareness Test Mar 3, 2004

Economic and educational equality are needed

Q: Is the Confederate flag an acceptable symbol of anything to an American?

A: The things I have seen growing up -- segregation, discrimination -- are a part of everything I am today. We still live in two Americas, and we should be willing to tell the American people that. We have two economies. We have two tax systems. Until we have economic and educational equality in America, we’re never going to be able to do things we need to do for African-Americans.

Source: Iowa Brown and Black Presidential Forum Jan 11, 2004

Confederate flag is divisive-Dean is wrong to cite it

Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards called rival Howard Dean’s Confederate flag remark elitist. Dean, who has since apologized for the remark, said he was trying to state his intention to make the party more inclusive and bring poor Southern whites back from the Republican Party to the Democratic Party. But Democratic rivals, like Edwards, seized on the comment as condescending and even accepting of people who are racists. He said he has talked personally to Dean about his concerns.

Edwards said the flag is a “very divisive symbol” and it is wrong to stereotype Southerners. “It’s like saying to any group of voters, ‘you don’t know what’s best for you. We know what’s best for you,’” Edwards said. “There’s an elitism and condescension associated with that attitude that’s enormously dangerous to us” and that voters want to be “treated with respect.”

Source: Nov 9, 2003

Patriot Act is being abused by the Attorney General

Q: The PATRIOT Act is two years old. There has been criticism of John Ashcroft for enforcement of legislation you authored. Shouldn’t those who wrote the legislation take responsibility?

EDWARDS: There are provisions, which get no attention, which did good things. The reason we need changes is because it gave too much discretion to an attorney general who does not deserve it. The attorney general told us that he would not abuse his discretion. He has abused his discretion. We know that now.

Source: Democratic Presidential 2004 Primary Debate in Detroit Oct 27, 2003

Support the Patriot Act with rigorous review

Q: Would you revise or repeal the Patriot Act?

A: I supported the Patriot Act because it contained provisions needed to strengthen our security, but I also believe this administration has abused its powers in implementing the law. One key provision of the act requires Congress to revisit key provisions of the law. I opposed efforts to repeal that “sunset,” and Congress must rigorously review the Patriot Act-as well as any new legislation-to see whether it advances our security and honors our values.

Source: interview Jun 17, 2003

Ashcroft erodes liberties in the name of protecting America

EDWARDS: John Ashcroft, in the name of protecting America, in the name of fighting a war on terrorism, is eroding our right to privacy, eroding our civil liberties, eroding the very heart and soul of what makes this country great. It’s all around the edges. It’s creeping. But we have to be so careful and so vigilant to make sure that America does not lose what makes America great.

MOSELEY-BRAUN: We have to take very seriously the assault on our civil liberties that Ashcroft and the Bush administration have begun and that Congress opened the door for with the PATRIOT Act. That act arguably violates the First, the Fourth, the Fifth, the Sixth, the Eighth, and the Fourteenth amendments of the Constitution, have opened the door to e-mails being tapped and phones being tapped and searches and people disappearing in this country for the first time. We have a real crisis in America when it comes to our civil liberties, and I do hope that this act will be repealed.

Source: [X-ref to Moseley-Braun] Democratic Debate in Columbia SC May 3, 2003

Other candidates on Civil Rights: John Edwards on other issues:
GOP: Sen.John McCain
GOP V.P.: Gov.Sarah Palin
Democrat: Sen.Barack Obama
Dem.V.P.: Sen.Joe Biden

Third Parties:
Constitution: Chuck Baldwin
Libertarian: Rep.Bob Barr
Constitution: Amb.Alan Keyes
Liberation: Gloria La Riva
Green: Rep.Cynthia McKinney
Socialist: Brian Moore
Independent: Ralph Nader
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Page last updated: Feb 08, 2010