A lot of people pulled together yesterday to exert maximum pressure on John Edwards not to fire his two female netroots outreach employees, Amanda Marcotte of Pandagon and Melissa McEwan of Shakespeare’s Sister and Big Brass Blog. And it payed off.

John Edwards in News Feed of
2/08/2007 at 11:36 AM EST

The tone and the sentiment of some of Amanda Marcotte’s and Melissa McEwan’s posts personally offended me. It’s not how I talk to people, and it’s not how I expect the people who work for me to talk to people. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but that kind of intolerant language will not be permitted from anyone on my campaign, whether it’s intended as satire, humor, or anything else. But I also believe in giving everyone a fair shake. I’ve talked to Amanda and Melissa; they have both assured me that it was never their intention to malign anyone’s faith, and I take them at their word. We’re beginning a great debate about the future of our country, and we can’t let it be hijacked. It will take discipline, focus, and courage to build the America we believe in.

An elegant response to a tricky situation. I’m glad he took some time to work this one out and I’m very glad that he made the right decision. His online support would have plummetted, particularly among the blog-writers that were all threatened by the Catholic League’s bullying attacks. Chris Bowers spoke for me when he said.

If Amanda and Melissa are terminated from the Edwards campaign, there is no way I could respect either myself or the movement and support Edwards in the primary. His campaign will have contributed to the longstanding goals of the conservative movement and DLC-nexus alike to defund, marginalize, ostricize, and otherwise diminish the influence and credibility of the people-powered netroots and grassroots. Such a move would reinforce every elitist, ignorant, double-standard, disinformation campaign ever run against the netroots and the blogosphere. During a primary election, when Democrats are trying to decide what direction our party will take, I won’t be a part of a campaign that decides to run as fast as it can away from the blogosphere, the netroots, and the progressive movement.

Edwards made a wise decision. His enemies don’t care about him. It’s much wiser to piss them off than a legion of potential supporters.

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