The nation is enraptured with the prospect of a female or black president, and John Edwards' loss in his home state yesterday underscores his inability to nab the spotlight from his celebrity rivals. "He is the most gifted athlete on the field, but there's just not room," one staffer tells the Washington Post.
Some chalk up his failures to history—no loser on a presidential ballot since Nixon has run again and won. Edwards got 45% of the white male vote last night, but a paltry 2% of the African-American vote. Party officials are likely to pressure Edwards to drop out and endorse Obama or Clinton—though he's got plenty of funds. "Anything can happen," said one aide.