Edwards beats back right wing noise machine

Keeps bloggers... But the right's dirty tricks have just begun...
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John Edwards announced a short time ago that although he doesn't agree with some of the statements made in past blog posts by his blogger Amanda Marcotte and organizer Melissa McEwan, he will stand by them.

Good for him.

Mentioning that some of the posts had "offended" him, Edwards was reassured that it was not their aim to malign any faith in general and vowed to give them "a fair shake."

He then redirected the conversation, subtly, to the blowhards in the right wing noise machine: "We're beginning a great debate about the future of our country, and we can't let it be hijacked. It will take discipline, focus, and courage to build the America we believe in."

Yesterday, when the news that right wing fanatic Bill Donohue had demanded their release, I wrote that this was the first test of his candidacy. It may not have been perfect, but it is an inspiring beginning.

There will be other attacks. Of that you can be sure. It's crucial that the dirty tricks and attack campaigns be anticipated and beaten back. Matt Browner Hamlin writes:
The netroots must continue to push back on the rightwing partisans who launched this attack on the netroots and the Edwards campaign. We must continue to point out that top staffers at the top levels of Republican presidential campaigns have ties to ongoing criminal investigations and past criminal malfeasance. We have to make sure the world knows about the ethical hardships some Republican presidential blog staffers have gone through in the past. We have to remind the media that they were played by Donohue, a hate-monger with no credibility to speak of (and potential lawbreaker himself).
But it isn't just the netroots in this fight anymore. John Edwards and all other presidential candidates must take up arms and push hard against the dirty tactics of the Right and the partisan hacks who perpetrate them.
Evan Derkacz is an AlterNet editor. He writes and edits PEEK, the blog of blogs.
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