You probably heard that John Edwards has officially declared his candidacy for president. Here are his top five priorities:

  • Provide moral leadership in the world
  • Strengthen our middle class and end poverty
  • Guarantee universal health care for every American
  • Lead the fight against global warming
  • Get America and other countries off our addiction to oil

Edwards, who’s been working primarily on poverty since the 2004 election, announced in the 9th Ward of New Orleans. Here’s the video:

He doesn’t get nearly the hype of Clinton and Obama, but Edwards is polling amazingly well in the early primary states. He’s the sleeper candidate to watch.

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(One thing I particularly like, via Ezra Klein, is Edwards’ answer on the subject of deficits, something about which virtually every candidate from either party bullshits relentlessly. Edwards admitted what nobody else will: reducing the deficit and making public investments are in tension. Even more remarkably, he unapologetically admitted that he would opt for the latter over the former. In other words, he admitted to being a liberal. In this silly day and age, that takes cojones.)