Candidates: Crisscrossing Paths

Article excerpt

Byline: Jonathan Darman

With no government salary or special stationery, former vice presidential candidates have only each other. As co-chairs of a Council on Foreign Relations task force on Russia, Jack Kemp, the Republican vice presidential candidate in 1996, and John Edwards, the Democratic candidate in 2004, have forged a friendship in the past six months--traveling halfway around the world, coauthoring an op-ed and appearing in public forums together. "It's probably raised some eyebrows among his friends and among my friends," Kemp tells NEWSWEEK, "but we work very well together."

Kemp and Edwards, who'd never met before the Russia project, bonded quickly. During an initial meeting at Edwards's Georgetown home, Kemp gave him Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's "The Red Wheel"; Edwards told his son Jack of Kemp's football triumphs as a Buffalo Bills quarterback. In early meetings, and on a trip to Russia in September, they traded debate-prep notes and war stories from the trail. "It takes a long time to get to Russia," Edwards tells NEWSWEEK. …