With Barack Obama expected to name his running mate at any time now, a true dark horse finalist has emerged. Rep. Chet Edwards of Texas is being reported as one of the finalists in the Obama VP search.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is the one responsible for floating Edwards’s name. In June, Pelosi told Newsweek, “I do think in the list of considerations there should be somebody from the House of Representatives, and Chet Edwards is a person many of us think would be a good person to have in the mix.”
Edwards was one of the first superdelegates to endorse Obama, “As someone who has spent most of my adult life fighting for veterans and for military troops and their families, I am convinced that Senator Obama will be a champion for better health care, housing and quality of life for those who have sacrificed so much for the American family. He knows that standing up for our troops, our veterans and their families is the right thing to do—for them and for our nation’s security,” said Edwards, who chairs the House Army Caucus.”
The 56 year old Edwards is a nine term congressman whose district includes President Bush’s Crawford home. He serves on the powerful House Budget and Appropriations Committees. He has been a strong advocate for veterans’ issues, and has consistently won reelection in a Republican district.
Edwards has recently been a DNC attack dog against McCain on veterans’ issues. Earlier this week during a conference call Edwards said, “All Americans respect Sen. McCain’s military service, but more would be surprised that Sen. McCain has consistently voted against increased funding for veterans healthcare and benefits.”
Edwards would appear to fit all the criteria that Obama is looking for in a running mate, so it is a surprise that he has flown so under the radar. He is a Democrat who has demonstrated that he can win in a Republican district. He has experience, and is an advocate for veterans. The downside is that he is unknown, but by Obama’s criteria of wanting a VP who does not seek the limelight, this is a good thing. If Obama’s running mate choice is a surprise, it could very well be Chet Edwards.
Edwards as a dark horse report