Official statement from the candidate's blog:
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.
Melissa and Amanda also made statements -- they are below the fold.
(Chris @ MyDD received an email):
"My writings on my personal blog, Pandagon on the issue of religion are generally satirical in nature and always intended strictly as a criticism of public policies and politics. My intention is never to offend anyone for his or her personal beliefs, and I am sorry if anyone was personally offended by writings meant only as criticisms of public politics. Freedom of religion and freedom of expression are central rights, and the sum of my personal writings is a testament to this fact."
"Shakespeare's Sister is my personal blog, and I certainly don't expect Senator Edwards to agree with everything I've posted. We do, however, share many views - including an unwavering support of religious freedom and a deep respect for diverse beliefs. It has never been my intention to disparage people's individual faith, and I'm sorry if my words were taken in that way."
He didn't give the rabid right what it wanted, but he certainly could have taken down the extremists who were all over TV calling for Melissa's and Amanda's heads (like William Donohue), but given the length of time it took to get a statement out there, I'm sure every word was agonized over at campaign HQ and they went with a passive response.
As I said in my earlier post, Amanda and Melissa were selected by the Edwards campaign to put on a different hat, a professional hat -- not to blog as they would in their personal spaces. Sticking by them recognizes that fact.
So — what’s the verdict? Wimpy, on target, what you expected?