I don’t think this proves anything, actually — although it may help us figure out who the Enquirer’s sources are.
Other loose threads are also unraveling Edwards’ account.
After Edwards was caught by The National Enquirer visiting Hunter in late July at the Beverly Hilton, the former North Carolina senator said Friday that that rendezvous was only arranged last minute.
“I had been in Los Angeles that day to do an event with the mayor, and that afternoon I got a call in my hotel room from a gentleman named Bob McGovern. … And he asked me to come and meet with them.”
But a National Enquirer reporter told FOXNews.com in July that they got a tip “a while ago” that Edwards would be at that hotel, and that “we had some time to implement a plan.”
Without going into specifics, the reporter said the tip came within the week, suggesting the tabloid had more than an afternoon to organize its stakeout.
How is that a “loose thread,” though? There’s nothing necessarily inconsistent about McGovern and Hunter renting the rooms at the Hilton in advance and then waiting until the last minute to invite Edwards. Granted, they’d have shelled out a few hundred bucks for nothing if it turned out he couldn’t make it due to a scheduling conflict or whatever, but then they’ve got Fred “The Best Friend Anyone’s Ever Had” Baron to help pick up the slack. Conceivably this gives us a clue as to who tipped the Enquirer off about the meeting — but, er, what clue does it offer? Like I said on Saturday, from the way Edwards described it, it sounds like Hunter and McGovern were shaking him down, which would point to them being the tipsters. Until, that is, you remember that the Enquirer’s also claiming, without any evidence thus far, that Edwards met with Hunter at the same hotel a month earlier in June. So here’s a theory: Someone who works at the hotel, probably at the front desk, spots Edwards there in June and phones the Enquirer with a hot tip. “Terrific!” say the editors. “Let us know if/when he, Hunter, or McGovern make any reservations in the future.” A few days before the July meeting, McGovern calls to make a reservation, the news is passed on from the front desk to the Enquirer, and the Enquirer cuts a check to their mole in due course as thanks for a job well done. The alternate theory, that Hunter and McGovern tipped the paper off, doesn’t make sense unless you can explain why they’d want the Enquirer to be there for the second meeting but not for the first. Assuming, of course, that the paper wasn’t there for the first meeting in June, which we really don’t know yet.