Saturday, August 9, 2008

It's Edwards's baby. It's just not Hunter's.

If you're a semi-sentient user of the internet you know the outlines of the Rielle Hunter/John Edwards story that's dominated the blogosphere for the last 24 hours.

They say Rielle Hunter had Edwards's baby. I think they're all wrong. I think it's Edwards' baby. I just don't think it's Hunters.

Let me explain.

If you're a semi-sentient user of the internet you know the outlines of the Rielle Hunter/John Edwards story that's dominated the blogosphere for the last 24 hours.

They say Rielle Hunter had Edwards's baby. I think they're all wrong. I think it's Edwards' baby. I just don't think it's Hunters.

Let me explain.

In the broadest strokes, the story is:

A middle aged divorcee trying to start over moves from New York to Hollywood, changes her name from Lisa Druck to Rielle (pronounced ree-ELL) Hunter and goes into the movies.

She hooks up with the Edwards for President campaign and convinces them to pay her a whole PILE of money to make web-only documentaries about Edwards so he comes off less like a Ken doll.

The two of them have an affair.

The National Enquirer hears about it and publishes the story. He denies it, the rest of the media ignores it.

She gets pregnant.

The National Enquirer hears about it and publishes the story. He denies it and says the father is his campaign aid, Andrew Young. The rest of the media ignores it.

They have a baby.

The National Enquirer hears about it and publishes. He denies it. The rest of the media ignores it.

The Enquirer keeps pursuing it, and finally gets pictures. He denies it, the rest of the media ignores it. They keep pressing.

Finally, he admits it, or at least some of it. He now says he had an affair with her, it ended a long time ago, his wife and family knew, he's NOT the father.

The mainstream media, prodded from it's stupor, finally publishes it.

As the mainstream media has reported it many bloggers have started pointing at holes in the story. Like, when exactly was Ms. Hunter hired, and were they having an affair at that time? When Young - a man with a wife and kids - was identified as the father before the baby was born, Hunter was moved into a house in Young's neighborhood. Apparently Mrs. Young did not object.


And then there's the question of timing. The baby - little Frances Quinn Hunter - was born Feb 27th 2008. Assuming she was born full term, she was conceived about June 5, 2007. But on March 22, 2007 Edwards and his wife announced that her cancer had returned; she was diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer, with metastases to the bone and possibly to her lung.

What kind of a man would get his mistress pregnant 6 weeks after announcing to the world that his wife was dying from cancer? I don't like Edwards, but that just seems too low, even for him.

The statement released by Edwards says he had an affair with her, but didn't love her. That his wife and family knew but let him run for President all the same.

The whole thing just doesn't make any sense. So I started thinking (a dangerous pastime).

Maybe the admission we're getting from Edwards is still a lie, meant to cover up something completely different.

What follows is pure speculation.

Edward's wife Elizabeth is 4 years older than him, born July 3 1949. They had 2 kids, Wade in 1979 and Cate in 1982. Wade was killed in 1996 when his Jeep was blown off a road by strong winds. Shortly thereafter, the Edwards decided to have more children. They had Emma Claire in 1998 and Jack in 2000.

At the time Emma was born Elizabeth was 49. The odds of her becoming pregnant at that age with her own eggs is about 1:1,000,000. They have said that she underwent "fertility treatments" but it is almost certain that both Emma and Jack were the result of one or more egg donations.

They have never admitted that. Perhaps not even to the children. It is relatively common for DE (Donated Egg) parents to keep it a secret from everyone. There are MANY Hollywood celebrity mothers who have had DE children and won't admit it. When an actress has twins at age 50, it's DE.

When you do a DE procedure it's just like conventional IVF, except the Dr. changes patients between egg retrieval and embryo transfer. And if it works you almost always end up with extra embryos, stored frozen in liquid nitrogen in a lab.

There are a few things you can do with those frozens - or "Totsicles" as some of the DE people call them. If the parents want more kids they can be transfered, one or two at a time, into the mom in the hope that they'll take and become new babies. They can be thawed and flushed. They can be donated to science for stem cell research, or they can be donated to another childless couple that can't afford a full $40,000 donor egg cycle.

It isn't at all common, but they could also be implanted in a surrogate, to carry them to gestation. Parents might do that if they wanted more children but the mother couldn't carry a pregnancy to term. For example, she might have had a hysterectomy, or have a progressive disease like Parkinson's. Or she might be on Chemotherapy.

Like Elizabeth Edwards.

I think maybe that's what happened here. I think Rielle Hunter wasn't John Edward's mistress, or at least she was not JUST his mistress.

I think she was a surrogate. I think John and Elizabeth Edwards wanted another baby, but due to the chemo she couldn't carry one.

That 6 weeks between the cancer announcement and conception would be a horrible span, if Edwards was cheating on his wife then. But would be about the right amount of time to get a surrogate ready to accept an embryo. Since she became pregnant she's been put up in very nice private homes AND paid $15k/month - a little on the rich side but not that outlandish as a surrogate fee, and they were paying for more than a conventional surrogate. The payments seem to have continued after the birth, as Ms. Hunter has nursed the little girl. The plan may have been to wait until after the election then quietly adopt the little guy. After all, John McCain has an adopted daughter, why not the Edwards? If it hadn't been for those meddlesome kids at the National Enquirer, they would have gotten away with it, too!

One more percentile to drop into the equation - Ms. Hunter is 44 years old and has never had children before. She MIGHT get pregnant the old fashioned way, but it's very unlikely - the odds are something like 1 in 40. MOST women who get pregnant at 44 do it with infertility treatments of some kind.

If it's true, it actually increase my estimation of Edwards. I don't care that he lied to the press; they deserve to be lied to early and often. I don't agree with their decision to not disclose the use of donated eggs for their first two children - I don't disapprove, it's their business, but I think transparency is a better option all the way around.

If I'm right it will come out eventually. Several people know - Edwards, Elizabeth, Rielle, the people at the Doctor's office, the aids and contributors that have been busy covering it up. And while I may be the first to come up with this hair-brained theory, I don't think I'll be the last. If more than one person knows, it's not a secret.


  1. Well, it's a new angle, but there are a few problems with it. The big one is: How is it better for Edwards to say Rielle was an affair instead of a surrogate mother?

    Also, given the length of the affair, it's not at all unreasonable to think Rielle might have gotten pregnant the old-fashioned way. If you play 1 to 40 odds several times a week for months, chances are you'll hit the jackpot. And who's to say she wasn't getting some fertility help on the side?

  2. Edwards would probably prefer aides to aids.

  3. Hare brained not hair-brained

  4. No one would hire a 40ish surrogate with no kids. Nice try.

  5. Papayasf, Edward's main constituency is southern, Christian and progressive. Christians have a long history of forgiving adulterers - like Clinton, Jimmy Swaggart. That's why he was so clear that he was cheating on his wife BEFORE her cancer returned - after she was diagnosed, cheating on her was unforgivable.

    That's also the reason he's so strongly denying that it's his baby. If she got pregnant the old fashioned way it was 6 weeks after the diagnosis. Like, he was doing her while his wife was in chemo. If THAT ever gets traction, he's toast.

    Nobody knows how that group of Christians would react to his having donor egg/sperm kids. I'd hope they wouldn't care, but they can be very judgmental. So they may be seeing how this plays out. If it doesn't, they can switch to the surrogate story.

    Othewise, why would Elizabeth still be supporting him?

  6. Your theory is certainly possible, but not likely in this particular cse.

    First of all, there are certain people with genetic constitutions that are able to conceive at the relatively advanced age of 43 (which is the age Hunter was when she became pregnant).

    I would imagine that the age of 43 or 44 is not all that rare in countries with high birth rates such as India.

    My grandmother, who was Hungarian, had her last child at 46, and this is a fact, not an estimation. My grandmother's age was not guessed at; I have her birth certificate to prove it.

    Also, a friend of mine just gave birth naturally to her fifth child (a complete accident) last year at age 46.

    So please don't be so sure of your theory -- which is all it is, really - because, really, it doesn't make much sense.

  7. Actually, it makes Hell-a-sense.

    In fact, as I mull the whole thing over, it's the ONLY scenario that accounts for the pregnancy/birth itself AND the reactions of...well.. everyone involved, right down to the aid's wife.

    Monster, I tip my hat to you - I think you've got it.

    - MuscleDaddy


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