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Inside Politics

Edwards: Kerry offers hope for 'future of America'


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Sen. John Edwards touts Sen. John Kerry's record.
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• The Candidates: Bush | Kerry
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John Edwards
John F. Kerry
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George W. Bush

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Newly minted vice presidential running mate Sen. John Edwards brought his sunny disposition to his party's weekly radio address Saturday, delivering it with the same Southern twanged optimism that fueled his one-time presidential sprint.

The senator from North Carolina's remarks were strictly in the campaign vein as he noted that "nothing makes me prouder than to stand with John Kerry."

"I know that John Kerry will make this country stronger and more secure for my children and for your children," Edwards said. "And he will build an America that's stronger at home and respected in the world."

Kerry, the junior senator from Massachusetts, tapped Edwards this week to join him on the Democratic ticket.

Edwards had been Kerry's competitor for the Democratic presidential nomination before giving up the failed bid in March.

"I know John Kerry well," Edwards said. "I spent six years working with him in the Senate, and we spent a lot of time on the campaign trail together. And I'll tell you one thing: He has what it takes inside to be president of the United States -- backbone, strength, courage, heart."

Edwards made a couple of thinly veiled slaps at the Bush administration -- noting that it took "three long years" for former Enron CEO and Chairman Kenneth Lay to be indicted. Lay has been a friend of President Bush's and contributed to his campaign.

Edwards also said Kerry's values show in "what he's done with his life" rather than "how he uses the word 'values' in a political slogan or a political speech."

"If you want to know about John Kerry's values, ask the men who served with him in Vietnam," Edwards said. "He put his life on the line for them every day -- seven days a week, 24 hours a day. They trusted him. They believed in him. They trust and believe in him today."

Edwards predicted that voters between now and the election would reject what he called "the tired, old, hateful negative politics of the past" in favor of "the politics of hope, the politics of what's possible."

"And that's what John Kerry is for this country," he said. "He's hope. Hope for you, hope for me, hope for our children, hope for the future of America. With John Kerry as our president, America's tomorrow will once again be better than today."


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