John Edwards Trial Has One Verdict But No Resolution
John Edwards outside federal court in Greensboro, NC Tuesday. Photo by: Sara D. Davis/Getty Images
John Edwards' saga doesn't yet have a final chapter.
Jurors have reached a verdict on one charge, but that doesn't conclude the month-long court case. The judge has asked jurors to continue deliberation on five other counts, the Associated Press reported Thursday afternoon.
The verdict on the single count is not yet known, but it was related to the charges of accepting illegal campaign contributions from Rachel "Bunny" Mellon, a wealthy donor.
CNN analyst Jeffrey Toobin summed up the news: "Let me put it simply - this is a mess."
Associated Press reporter Michael Biesecker explained on NewsHour at the start of the trial the issues at stake.
Edwards is accused of conspiring to use campaign money to hide his pregnant mistress, Rielle Hunter, from his wife, Elizabeth Edwards, who died of cancer in 2010.
The trial of the 2004 Democratic vice presidential nominee began more than a month ago and has been marked by a number of quirks, the Washington Post has reported. Jurors have had to balance their attention between salacious details of Edwards' affair with the dense nuances of campaign finance law. The jury has deliberated for nine days while court watchers noticed bizarre behavior from alternate jurors.
The former politician could face a maximum of 30 years in jail and $1.5 million in fines.
For some insight into Edwards' political importance years ago, here's a transcript of a NewsHour interview with historians in 2004, when the North Carolina politician delivered a speech at the Democratic National Convention. At one time, the NewsHour noted, Edwards was a young attorney known for his skill in courtroom oration.