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Imagine this. Two Democrats are arguing about John Edwards future. One says, ‘Why not? Why shouldn’t he do it? Here’s the scenario: Democratic Senate leader Harry Reid calls John Edwards, says, John, your running against Elizabeth Dole could mean Democrats keeping control of the Senate. Which could mean the end of the war in Iraq. Suddenly, we go from having an unknown state Senator and gay investment banker running against Elizabeth Dole to having the best candidate in North Carolina. John can out-fundraise Dole, match her national appeal and, who knows, he may even lead in the polls.’

Second Democrat (shaking his head): ‘He has safer options. Hillary or Obama may offer him a cabinet post to mend fences. Why risk being Secretary of HEW for a bruising Senate campaign he might lose?’

First Democrat (appalled): ‘Listen. John needs to add a little luster to his tarnished political star. He lost to Kerry, Obama, and Hillary. What he needs is to win an election and what we need is a Democrat who can beat Dole.’

Second Democrat: ‘It’s still too risky. You’re dreaming. It will never happen.’

First Democrat: ‘Forget the risk. If nothing else think of the sheer entertainment value. It would be another “thriller from Manila.” A Democratic heavyweight versus a Republican heavyweight. It would turn the Senate election from somnambulant to riveting: John Edwards versus Elizabeth Dole. A race like that doesn’t come along often.’

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