Cherie Young, the 38-year-old wife of, onetime top aide to Senator John Edwards, on Monday took the stand before a federal court in Greensboro, North Carolina. She testified that she found it repulsive when Sen. Edwards used $725,000, donated by the wealthy philanthropist Rachel ‘Bunny’ Mellon for his presidential candidacy, to hide the pregnancy of his mistress Rielle Hunter.
Cherie Young said she deposited the Mellon checks, which began to flow in June 2007, by endorsing them with her maiden name because Mr. John Edwards told her on the phone that he had talked to his campaign lawyers ‘this was not a campaign donation. Get the money in! (to the bank).’
When prosecutor Robert Higdon asked her how she reacted to the senator’s command she said “my husband and I had given everything to make this man president. If I didn’t do this, the campaign was going down.”
As more Mellon checks arrived, following instructions from Mr. Edwards, she issued checks for Hunter, who had came to hide at her home away from the media. She paid Hunter between $5,000 to $11,000 each month, paid her ob-gyne pre-natal care $2,500, provided Hunter a companion card to their American Express account, paid all her bills, bought her a used BMW that cost $26,000, and there were also checks for Hunter’s ‘spiritual adviser’ that totaled close to $10,000.
But there was a lump in her throat when she spoke of her husband’s decision to go along with Sen. Edwards’ idea for Andrew to publicly claim paternity of his mistress’s baby ‘Mr. Edwards said it was for the good of the country.. .Andrew said he agreed, he was willing to do it because it was their only chance to cover this up…I had to go along with the lie.’
And then came the fateful day in July 2008 when Edwards was caught at the Beverly Hilton Hotel visiting his mistress and his baby by the National Enquirer, she said that’s when the late Texas billionaire Fred Baron, who also supported Edwards’ campaign told her ‘you’re going home.’