Feds Search Edwards Campaign for Affair Cover Up

ABC News' Tahman Bradley reports:

Did the presidential campaign of John Edwards pay Rielle Hunter to keep quiet about her affair with the former North Carolina senator?

That's what federal investigators are looking into. 

Former Sen. Edwards confirmed to the Associated Press that feds are looking into his campaign funds. 

The Charlotte Observer first reported that U.S. Attorney George Holding is conducting an investigation of the 2008 Edwards presidential campaign, looking for a cover up and or improper use of funds from campaign donors, and a federal grand jury could consider evidence, the Observer reports.

"Records show that Hunter was paid by a political action committee aligned with Edwards. She received $114,000 to film Edwards as he hopscotched the nation to rally crowds in the fight against poverty. She followed him to Uganda, where he met with starving children orphaned by attacks by rebel forces. Her "webisodes" still live on the Internet," the Observer writes.

Edwards, in a statement to the Observer said, "I am confident that no funds from my campaign were used improperly."

Edwards, who was the Democratic Party's vice presidential nominee in 2004, first admitted that he repeatedly lied about the affair with Hunter during an August 2008 interview with ABC News.

The National Enquirer first broke word of the affair.

Edwards said he told his wife about the affair at the end of 2006 before doctors discovered her cancer had returned.

Hunter gave birth to a daughter in early 2008. Edwards denies that he is the father.

In her new memoir due out this month, Elizabeth Edwards slams Rielle Hunter, reportedly calling her life "pathetic." Astonishingly, Mrs. Edwards -- her husband's biggest campaign advocate -- admits he should not have run for president a second time in 2008.

Last week, Edwards' senior political adviser during the campaign, Joe Trippi, expressed his view that Edwards shoud not have run for president in 2008.

Mrs. Edwards is schedule to appear on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" Thursday to discuss her book.

Some Democrats are furious that Edwards ran knowing that news of the affair could become public and impact Democrats' hopes of capturing the White House. 

Hillary Clinton's pollster during most of her 2008 campaign, Mark Penn, suggested that the outcome of the Democratic presidential nomination could have been different without Edwards in the race.

"Most likely it would have been a two-way race and would have released a lot of voters who focused on demographics . . . voters who would later vote for Hillary Clinton," said Penn.

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