Don’t trust your soul to no backwoods southern lawyer. Because if nothing else, he’ll get away scott free.

Such was the case with former trial attorney and 2004 Democratic Vice Presidential nominee John Edwards.

He was brought up on the exact same charges Trump is facing.

Edwards was a well known senator and ran with John Kerry in his losing 2004 presidential campaign. He ran against Obama and Clinton in 2008, and was a serious contender for a while, before Obama took the Iowa caucus.

After that, all hell broke loose. Edwards was found to be having an affair with his campaign videographer, Rielle Hunter. Even worse, she became pregnant with his child, and Edwards pressured a staffer to claim fatherhood. Even worse than that, he used campaign funds to pay Hunter for her silence on the affair. And this was all while his wife was dying from cancer. Total payments added up to a million bucks.

All centered around the 2008 campaign, Edwards was officially charged three years later. Prosecutors actually did get felony charges to stick at first. The most notable one, that Trump is also facing, was conspiracy to violate federal campaign finance laws. Edwards was looking at five years in jail should he have been declared guilty.

If Bragg wants to get Trump, he can’t get him with a federal statute violation, but on violating Federal Elections Committee policy. Although ultimately, while the FEC is indeed a governmental organization, their policies were officially advisory. You could stretch that, calling for a conspiracy charge when dealing with an official governmental org and money involved with them. But it didn’t have any teeth. Ditto for all things Trump.

The jury acquitted Edwards on that charge, and were deadlocked on five other lesser ones. So if we examine Trump’s charge right there, it has the easiest shot of falling by the wayside.

For Edwards, a mistrial was declared, and no prosecutor ever bothered to pick it up again. Edwards, who did ultimately acknowledge paternity, remains a free man to this day, and still practices law, with his law license still very active and usable.

Things turned out fine for Edwards and his finally acknowledged kid, pictured

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