The walls are coming down around John Edwards. Considered on the short-list as Barack Obama’s Vice-President, amid allegations that Edwards has an affair and a baby with a mistress, now there are allegations of hush money being paid to keep her quiet.

A whole lot of hush money according to the National Enquirer which apparently is the only newspaper left in America which can afford investigative journalists. They say that an Edwards’ backer has been paying Rielle Hunter to keep quiet about John Junior, whose actual name is reported as Frances Quinn Hunter. They have implicated Andrew Young in the scheme by reporting that the same financial backer is paying sums of money to Young.

Ms. Hunter is the woman whom the Enquirer says Edwards was visiting in a hotel room last week. She reportedly had his baby last year. Meanwhile his faithful wife Elizabeth Edwards continues to battle breast cancer.

Ms. Hunter and Mr. Young have both indicated that the baby is a product of a relationship between them rather than John Edwards. That should have put the rumors away but new revelations from the paper continue to dog him.

Lest we be confused, the payment of hush money is not technically bribery according to our faithful companion, the on-line dictionary. Bribery is a payment made to a public official in exchange for an official action. Political bribery is what Tony Resko was convicted of doing, the Chicago felon who gave Barack Obama land next to his home. Hush money is a payment to someone for keeping quiet, which is usually legal and sometimes politically smart.

Until you get caught. Edwards career as a politician is finished unless he can explain away these persistent rumors. And to think that Barack Obama was rumored to be a hair away from selecting Edwards as a VP running mate. Where is the judgment?

Edwards responds to a reporter’s question about the affair while discussing his Veep chances in a video below.

John Edwards National Enquirer (Video)