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Thank you, John Edwards. (Go Obama!)

CNN reports John Edwards is out. I’m saddened by this because I liked Edwards on the issues and themes — we need to be talking about class and poverty. The Democratic race was better for having him in it. And I’m proud that I had a chance to contribute a tiny, tiny bit towards his Internet policy.

And I could tell you what my issues with Obama are — mainly about the inevitable collapse of a policy process that thinks it’s going to find shared “great American values” among people who really, really disagree. Between pro- and anti-Iraq war folks, the only shared American value is the belief that Britney Spears needs to take a rest.

Nevertheless, I feel a sense of liberation now, because Obama touches me in a way that Edwards did not, and, btw, in way that Howard Dean did not. (It’s a different story when it comes to (1) Elizabeth Edwards, who I find truly charismatic and hope-giving, and (2) the Dean campaign, which was amazing.)

I have to look back to being a high school kid handing out leaflets for Bobby Kennedy to find the same sense of hope that Obama inspires in me. In part, I think, it’s the pure youth of the candidate. My generation had its chance and produced Bill Clinton and He Who Needs Forgetting. Time for us to pass on the baton, as quickly as possibly. And, in part it’s the sense of common cause, common enthusiasm, and common hope across this country’s class and race lines. It’s awe-inspiring and oh so best-of-America to be out in streets dappled with so many colors.

Then there’s this: With McCain the likely Republican candidate, it’ll be character vs. character. And in that matchup, Obama is by far the Democrats’ best choice.

Go, Obama! And thank you so much, John and Elizabeth. [Tags: ]

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